During World War II, British brainiacs helped save their country and defeat the Nazis. Recently, the equipment they used has been rebuilt and the surviving members got together for a reunion.
The Bombe was the brainchild of Alan Turing and Gordon Welchman, and the 210 machines manufactured by the British Tabulator Machine Company did vital work cracking encoded German military traffic – a feat which shortened the war by two years, Bletchley Park suggests.
The original devices were destroyed after the war on security grounds, but in 1970 a set of blueprints turned up at Bletchley and the idea to reconstruct a Bombe was born. The rebuild team, led by volunteer John Harper, has finally succeeded in putting the beast together:
Check out MAKE, Volume 17: The Lost Knowledge issue!