The Pilot ACE (Automatic Computing Engine) was the first physical manifestation of the ‘universal machine’ outlined by the mathematician and wartime code-breaker Alan Turing (1912-1954). He imagined a machine that was not structured to create a particular task but one that would be capable of any form of computation.
With the confidence that characterised post-war British technology, an attempt was made by the National Physical Laboratory in Teddington to take on the Americans and help launch a national computer industry. The ‘pilot’ or test assembly of ACE was completed in 1950 and for a short time was the fastest computer in the world.
- National Physical Laboratory, Teddington
- Key Individuals
- Alan Turing, National Physical Laboratory,