Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum (part 5)

      6 Comments on Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum (part 5)

This is part of a series of blogposts about the Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum in Paderborn Germany. Read part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here and part 4 here.

Before we finally reach the computer era there a still a couple of machines to show you. First of all, this wonderful wall of typewriters, presenting the mass production. It contained the usual suspects as the Selectric, the Valentine, but also the Olivetti M40, Olympia SM and a Lettera. It did however also displayed some unusual suspects, some kind of Chinese typewriter and a Melotype!





And somewhere in between, there was this typewriter work shop! Woa! Don’t you just love that cabinet?


Of course the accounting machines were also present. Here are a couple of those.






What I haven’t mentioned yet about this first floor (yes, there’s another one) is there also is a Hall of Fame. It celebrates a couple of inventors, like Wilhelm Schickard the inventor of the mechanical calculator, Blaise Pascal who also worked on calculating machines. Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz who developed the infinitesimal calculus and refined the binary number system. Charles Babbage (and of course Ada Lovelace) who invented the first mechanical computer. Werner von Siemens who founded the electrical and telecommunications company Siemens after inventing a telegraph that used a needle to point to the right letter, instead of using Morse code. Herman Hollerith who developed a mechanical tabulator based on punched cards. Thomas J. Watson, the founder of IBM, based largely around punched card tabulating machines. Alan Turing who was highly influential in the development of computer science, giving a formalisation of the concepts of “algorithm” and “computation” with the Turing machine (and codebreaker of the Enigma). Konrad Zuse whos greatest achievement was the world’s first functional program-controlled Turing-complete computer, the Z3. Howard H. Aiken who was the original conceptual designer behind IBM’s Harvard Mark I computer. J. Presper Eckert and John W. Mauchly who invented the first general-purpose electronic digital computer (ENIAC). John von Neumann who made major contributions to a number of fields. And Heinz Nixdorf himself who founded Nixdorf Computer AG which was the market leader in West Germany and the fourth-largest computer manufacturer worldwide.

It was very interesting, some of the inventions were rebuild so people could test how they work, like the first calculating machines. There were stories about their personal lives as-well as their career, sometimes even in audio.

6 thoughts on “Heinz Nixdorf MuseumsForum (part 5)

  1. Richard P

    I’ll also comment on the Continental Rapid. I have seen them on ebay.de several times, but never seen one in person. That is one of the most impressive typewriters (+) ever built!


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