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Museum of Science and Industry

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The Manchester Small-Scale Experimental Machine, nicknamed ‘Baby’, was the first computer to store and run a program. Watch volunteers run our replica Baby and see how far computing has come since 1948.

The original Baby computer was built at the University of Manchester using technology developed for Second World War radar and communications equipment.

Baby was just a prototype, but it led to the development of the Ferranti Mark 1, the world’s first commercially available computer.

Our replica was built in 1998 from original parts to mark the 50th anniversary of the world’s first stored-program computer. The original no longer exists, so this is the closest you’ll get to an important piece of computing history, which took place right here in Manchester.