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“Outstanding Computer History Museum!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Computer History Museum

Computer History Museum
1401 N Shoreline Blvd., Mountain View, CA 94043
650-810-1010
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Type: Specialty Museums, Museums
Attraction details
San Jose, California
Top Contributor
150 reviews 150 reviews
85 attraction reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
“Outstanding Computer History Museum!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2013

My Dad (a retired electrical engineer) and I visited the Computer History Museum yesterday.

We were amazed and entranced by the depth and range of this institution.

The exhibits and the artifacts are astounding, although I might have been disappointed if some of these things had not been present. We saw the Babbage Difference Engine No. 2, the RAMAC (first hard drive, developed in San Jose), an Enigma (German code machine) and a component of the Colossus (seminal WW2 code-breaking computer).

We were here for about 3 hours, and could have stayed for another hour (we got tired).

My only complaint is that I think the cues on flow through the museum could be a bit better; I definitely should have referred to the map more.

We'll go back!

Visited November 2013
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Florham Park, New Jersey, USA
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17 reviews 17 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Delightful Museum!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2013

I've always been more interested in computers than my wife, so I wasn't sure how this visit would turn out. But we thoroughly enjoyed the 3 hours touring the museum itself and then spend another 45 minutes watching the very impressive Babbage calculator. There's so much to see that it can be a little hard to follow -- so take a map to help guide yourself through the jam packed museum.

Visited October 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Minimal interactivity. Babbage machine not there. Staff not helpful with advice on what to see.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2013 via mobile

I looked everywhere before realizing that the Babbage machine no.2 was not there. Nor was Play, nor PDP-1. Least the staff could have done was to tell me but no that would have been too much. Most exhibits are show and tell only, using static notices and audio video - behind glass or transparent plastic, no interactivity. For the $15 admission, not worth it. Plus it is far from any other museum, and taxis are very expensive.

Visited October 2013
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Metuchen, New Jersey
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4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“A walk down memory lane...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

When my wife suggested visiting, I thought it was going to be pretty lame. My attitude changed when we got to the ticket counter and were offered the Super Geek package by a guy who was clearly a geek. Was immediately interested to see two of the featured exhibits he talked about (Google's Street View and the Babbage Difference Engine).

We started by walking through the first sections of the Revolution exhibit, which chronicles the entire history of computing devices, and took a break from that to get back to the Babbage presentation at the scheduled time.

The later parts of the Revolution exhibit (this exhibit takes up nearly all of the museum) were a wonderful walk down memory lane, showing examples of pretty much every electronic toy I played with as a child - even ones I had long ago forgotten about (e.g., a piano keyboard overlay for the Commodore 64). There were also many fun interactive exhibits (e.g., Pong, Watson on Jeopardy).

The museum is just down the street from the Google headquarters, which is an open campus that is fun to walk around in, and very close to a very walkable downtown in Mountain View. Easy to mix it into your day trip or overnight stay in Mountain View.

Visited October 2013
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Surrey, England, United Kingdom
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16 reviews 16 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Needs time to absorb it all”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

A really comprehensive collection of computing equipment from ancient to modern. Starting with the abacus and slide rule the museum charts the development of computing from early mechanical devices to the present. Well worth a visit, even if it is alarming to find the computers you worked with a few years ago are now museum exhibits!

To cover the whole of the museum takes several hours. We didn't manage to see everything in a three-hour visit.

The museum is well presented, but we found the routing a bit hard to fathom. Some of the sections are like a maze.

In all an excellent museum

Visited September 2013
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