Researchers across the globe to join hands to interpret and construct the mechanical computer
The Science Museum in London has reportedly agreed to help digitising the original plans of the Analytical Engine conceived by Charles Babbage.
This would be a fillip to the project that aims to construct one of the earliest mechanical computers based on sketches by the mathematician. The BBC reported that the images will be used to create a full working model of the Analytical Engine.
The report said that at present, the Science Museum’s archives Babbage’s many notepads and sketch books. They remain in a largely inaccessible form in the museum.
Digitisation of the documents is expected to allow researchers around the world to pick apart the many disparate ideas and settle on the definitive version of the machine, said the BBC.
One of the minds behind the project, programmer John Graham-Cumming said, "There are some complete plans, they are just not totally complete. There will be a degree of interpretation."
"The machine itself is going to be enormous, about the size of a small steam train, so the simulation is important to allow anyone access," added Graham-Cumming.
"[The Analytical Engine] is actually quite fast given that it’s all in cogs, so Babbage was thinking about something relatively powerful. Of course, we’re far beyond that now," said Graham-Cumming.
Graham-Cumming said he had set the goal of completing the project by 2021, the 150th death anniversary of Charles Babbage.