Long back, in 1953-54, Christopher Strachey, using the built-in random generator of the Ferranti Mark 1 and programming system made by Alan Turing, generated texts of love that evoked many true passions in people then. Now after so many decades, Dr. David Link has recreated both the hardware and software of this 1951 computer as part of a project to safeguard the entire scientific Ferranti Mark 1 software from 1948 – 1958.
It’s the devotion in reincarnating this iconic device that won him the first Tony Sale Award. The new award recognizes achievements in computer conservation achievements.
It’s all managed by the Computer Conservation Society and sponsored by Google. With the powerful search engine spending money on it, the award has found the right person.
Manchester Baby is a prototype of the first fully electronic universal computer controlled by software. Ferranti Mark 1 was an industrial version of this Manchester Baby. It was Christopher Strachey, who originally wrote the software for this automated love letters.
LoveLetters 1.0 has two parts. The visitors can interact with the functional replica of Mark 1. They can easily type their names on the switches of the console. Then by performing the original code of Strachey’s software, it can continuously produce love letters.
At another location, the love letter written is showcased on a large screen. This art installation was first shown at the centre of art and media technology-Karlsruhein 2009.