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Started by xbod72 on Sep 14, 2020 6:55:14 AM
The seldom acknowledged prosperity mistake: how the UK threw away its IT creations.

We all know this nation is f-ed cos COVID and Brexit.

But with Turing having invented computers and Berners-Lee having invented the world wide web we should have started as a much more prosperous nation. Instead, the world wide web is powering Google, Facebook, Amazon - all overseas. And what do we do when we buy those products back from them? We don't even tax them!

And now the British chip-designer ARM has been sold to America's Nvidia. We're total f-ing chumps.

... would you believe I typed all that out before noticing the article says ARM was owned by Japan at this point anyway? Gah! Point stands, though!

SharkPatoo - 14 Sep 2020 08:41:36 (#1 of 131)

Indeed, we make nothing, build nothing, own nothing.

barkis - 14 Sep 2020 08:48:40 (#2 of 131)

The computer was hypothesised by Turing but the first one was built bt Tommy Flowers. Still British of course.

xbod72 - 14 Sep 2020 08:49:14 (#3 of 131)

Perhaps someone will colonise and give us things. Oh, hang on, there's no wealth to be extracted that can't already be extracted over the internet.

Bonusy - 14 Sep 2020 08:52:30 (#4 of 131)

TBL was working at the CERN labs in Swisserland when he created the web

Sabacious - 14 Sep 2020 08:54:33 (#5 of 131)

Charles Babbage invented the computer, surely? Unfortunately he couldn’t get it built during his lifetime as there wasn’t the manufacturing infrastructure to cope with its demands.

xbod72 - 14 Sep 2020 08:59:38 (#6 of 131)

I totally grant the existence of Babbage but is it Turing or Babbage that most accounts for the modern day computing situation?

GyratingTrampoline - 14 Sep 2020 09:00:28 (#7 of 131)

The IT sector in the UK is thriving, it provides employment directly and indirectly to lots of people and ought to be generally seen as a success story. Household name - recognition in itself isn't an important criterion of success.

The point about not taxing multinationals properly is a good one though

browserbutton - 14 Sep 2020 09:01:25 (#8 of 131)

Imagine if every household had a big old Babbage:

Sabacious - 14 Sep 2020 09:01:39 (#9 of 131)

Well one preceded the other by 100 years, so Turing (and others) made progress from Babbage’s concept.

Let’s call it a draw.

Sabacious - 14 Sep 2020 09:02:33 (#10 of 131)

It’s a beautiful thing is a difference engine.

Bonusy - 14 Sep 2020 09:05:36 (#11 of 131)

I totally grant the existence of Babbage but is it Turing or Babbage that most accounts for the modern day computing situation?

Ada Lovelace was hugely important in pushing what could be done with early computing tools as well, in some ways the first programmer

Sabacious - 14 Sep 2020 09:06:23 (#12 of 131)

Good point.

bossab2 - 14 Sep 2020 09:10:13 (#13 of 131)

I work for a successful 'British' IT company.

Except its owned by a company based abroad.

tasselhoff - 14 Sep 2020 09:16:19 (#14 of 131)

ARM already belonged to a Japanese bank prior to being sold to Nvidia.

Bonusy - 14 Sep 2020 09:17:18 (#15 of 131)

The underlying reason many such concepts and ideas were able to flourish in the UK is surely down to the educational system, where a high-quality of education was historically available to a broader cross-section of society based upon merit - at least in comparison to other nations

I don't think the UK's domestic failure to build big industries from great ideas is limited to the area of IT though

ARM already belonged to a Japanese bank prior to being sold to Nvidia

Already noted by xbod, tass

SharkPatoo - 14 Sep 2020 09:17:39 (#16 of 131)

It makes me miss the old A3000.

tasselhoff - 14 Sep 2020 09:20:05 (#17 of 131)

ah, ok

tasselhoff - 14 Sep 2020 09:21:33 (#18 of 131)

Interestingly, Nvidia is worth more than Intel and AMD.

Bonusy - 14 Sep 2020 09:25:10 (#19 of 131)

Combined. That's mad. Nvidia has really surged over the last 18 months

SharkPatoo - 14 Sep 2020 09:29:53 (#20 of 131)

That's because Apple charge about £8K for one of their cards in a Pro!

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