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April 07, 2006

Heath Robinson Rube Goldberg computer

Tim writes, "This has an incredibly high geek factor."

This proposed HRRB computer project is named in honor of British cartoonist and illustrator William Heath Robinson (1872-1944) and his American counterpart Reuben Lucius Goldberg (1883-1970). Robinson and Goldberg were both famous for creating illustrations of machines that were intended to perform relatively simple tasks, but whose implementations were incredibly complex such that they performed their tasks in exceedingly convoluted and indirect ways.

Just to set the scene, take a look at the photo below. This shows a relay-based computer created by Professor Harry Porter III, who is a lecturer at Portland State University. (You can find out more about this little rapscallion on Harry's Website).

Posted by joke du jour at April 7, 2006 09:01 PM

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