Pilot ACE Computer
The Pilot ACE Computer changed the future in 1950
The future then...
We take it for granted that we can surf the net, write documents or play music, all on one laptop. But Pilot ACE was the first computer that could do more than one thing. And for a while it was the fastest computer in the world.
The future now...
In the future, a new type of machine called a quantum computer could give us unimaginable calculating power. If someone figures out how to build one, it could crack currently unbreakable codes and lead to all kinds of life-changing discoveries...
Learn more about this Icon
See other Icons
What links this massive machine with today's changing climate?
It's the most famous steam locomotive in the world... but what makes it so special?
Using only 20 letters, how did this odd-looking machine make the world a smaller place?
Looking inside the body was tricky before the discovery of X-rays. What did it mean for medicine?
Motoring for the masses begins. Imagine swapping your horse for this handsome creature...
A life-saving medicine made from mould? Would you have believed it?
The Nazis built it to fire missiles at London. So why have we chosen a weapon of war to celebrate our centenary?
In a world where computers could only do one thing, how slow could you bear to go?
Imagine how you'd feel if you thought you had discovered the secret of life...
How far? How fast? How on Earth? Forty years later we ask: would I have been as brave?
Add your own Icon
We want to know what invention or discovery has changed your life... Could it be the iPod, IVF or the internet? What would you choose?