Smashwords Edition

Copyright 2009 David Shaw

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This story is based on a single piece of pure speculation. Suppose the transistor had been invented in the United Kingdom in 1937, instead of in the United States in 1947?

There are no particular reasons why it could not have been. Semi-conductors had been used in "cat's whisker" radios since the 1920's. And once transistors were available it would have been quickly recognised that digital computers could now be built. Construction of the world's first digital computer in fact began in 1938 at Iowa State University. Of course, it had to use vacuum tubes and was extremely primitive.

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