Campaign launched to build Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine

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A steam-powered computer designed by the 19th century mathematician Charles Babbage could finally be built after a campaign was launched to bring his dream to life.

The Analytical Engine – conceived in 1837 – remains one of the greatest inventions that never was as Babbage died before he could see out its construction.

However, John Graham-Cumming, a programmer and science blogger, now hopes to realise Babbage’s vision by raising £400,000 to build the giant brass and iron contraption.

He plans to use Babbage’s original blueprints for the device, which are contained in a collection of the inventor’s notebooks held at the Science Museum in London.

The campaign has already attracted 1,600 supporters who have pledged funds to kick-start the project.

Elements of the engine have been built over the last 173 years, but this would be the first complete working model of the machine....

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