United Kingdom
Milton Keynes

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16 travelers at this place

  • Day40

    Winning the war, one byte at a time.

    May 28, 2017 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ☀️ 20 °C

    It was early in World War 2.
    The problem : break the code that communicates Hitler's strategic plans to his generals. These messages were coded AND encrypted by an unknown machine. This code was so hard it made the usual German Enigma code seem easy as a paper bag.

    The Solution: boffins + machines*

    The boffins (engineers, code breakers, linguists etc) invent the computer to reverse the encryption. They do it without EVER seeing the original machine (the Lorenz SZ 42).

    In the process they invent the electric powered computer in the first dedicated computer facility.
    The movie doesn't tell you half of it...

    All this is now rebuilt on site at Bletchley Park where the secret allied intelligence work happened.
    It has become the national museum of computing. Computers of all eras are there, including the old school retro stuff I've used over 20 years... XT computers Palm pilots, Segas...

    My inner nerd, which isnt so inner, had a ball.

    *(which we now know is the long standing formula for making nerds)
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  • Day42

    Leaving our home away from home.

    May 30, 2017 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 14 °C

    It had to happen. After almost forty days we handed back our camper van. We (mostly) enjoyed 4000kms and almost 80 hours of driving. We've been quite comfy with soft beds, hot water, shower, kitchen, separate toilet, fridge, even central heating.
    The camper gave us the freedom to make our plans as we went, stay longer or move on as we wish. The continent loves campervans and with lots of free campsite options we paid about $20AUD per night on average at campsites.
    Now staying in London: that's a different story...
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  • Day43

    Welcome to England

    August 15, 2017 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Where - Bletchley Park
    Weather - sunny 25°C
    Steps - 11250 or 7km

    The 2 hour ferry crossing and to see the white cliffs of Dover was amazing- they really are spectacular. Even though the steering wheel is on the wrong side (for this country) the actual driving is strangely familiar . We drove to the Cambridge area which was a bit slower than anticipated (traffic heading north out of London) and stayed in a little country village - just lovely.

    We had decided to visit Bletchley Park, which, if you have seen The Imitation Game movie about the code breakers during WWII you will know what I'm talking about. Very interesting- we did a free guided talk which added some fascinating tidbits of information. We only spent a few hours there but could have stayed all day. However, we had to get to York by evening (about 4 hours drive).

    On the way we passed through Nottingham so bad to check out Sherwood Forest on the way. The Major Oak (perhaps the one where Robin Hood hung out?) was an impressive 1,150 year old tree. The branches are being supported by props.

    All in all, a very nice day.
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  • Day44

    Electronic Daisy Festival

    July 8, 2016 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

    Dieser Festival war eher eine spontane Idee. Per Couchsurfing fragte ich 6 Personen an, zwecks einer Unterkunft. Ich bekam eine Absage (Mann) und eine Zusage (Frau). Die Frau erklärte mit zwar bereits Gäste zu haben, allerdings könnte ich in deren Garten campen.
    Der junge Mann, der mir erst eine Absage gegeben hatte, da er bereits einen anderen beherbergte, kontaktierte mich nochmal. Er meinte nur, er würde gerne mit mir zum Festival gehen und sage dem anderen schnell ab. Ich nahm seinen Vorschlag an und sagte auch meiner ersten Gastgeberin ab.

    Der junge Tschche war sehr mega entspannt. Er war das totale Gegenteil von mir. Machte sich um nichts Sorgen und hatte so eine "Who cares"-Einstellung.
    Wir lernten uns Freitag kennen und gingen Samstag dann zum Festival. Es war echt ein riesiges Festival mit 4 Stages. Es war echt super cool, auch wenn ich es irgendwie nicht genießen konnte, da ich nicht so richtig entspannen konnte. War gerade noch auf dem Fahrrad und dann auf einmal warst ich mitten auf einem riesigen Festival.
    Haha, als das Festival zu Ende war stimmten alle auf dem Heimweg noch "Will Gregg is on fire" an ;-)
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  • Day26

    Bletchley Park

    August 26, 2015 in the United Kingdom ⋅ 🌧 16 °C

    Went to see the now-famous (once top secret) wartime codebreaking center. There's actually quite a bit to see around the site and I think I spent a bit too long following around the audio guide (of the outdoors) instead of looking at the displays indoors.

    Most impressive was the working rebuilt replica Bombe (electro-mechanical-)machine, designed (but not built) by Alan Turing, to break the German enigma codes in WW2. Also interesting were the restored huts in which the codebreakers worked.

    I didn't realise until the end that there was a separate National Museum of Computing next door (that is separate because of an ongoing spat between the organisations). They had a separate entry fee and a replica Colossus (the first actual programmable electronic digital computer), also used for codebreaking. Unfortunately by the time I realised this there wasn't time to see it :(

    I did stumble upon an interesting little exhibit on radio, including amateur radio station, near the exit. It was inside Bletchley Park so free bonus!
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Milton Keynes, MIK

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