Calculating Ada: The Countess of Computing • 2015

Category: Technology
Download:

Ada Lovelace was a most unlikely computer pioneer. In this film, Dr Hannah Fry tells the story of Ada's remarkable life. Born in the early 19th century Ada was a countess of the realm, a scandalous socialite and an 'enchantress of numbers'. The film is an enthralling tale of how a life infused with brilliance, but blighted by illness and gambling addiction, helped give rise to the modern era of computing. Hannah traces Ada's unlikely union with the father of computers, Charles Babbage. Babbage designed the world's first steam-powered computers - most famously the analytical engine - but it was Ada who realised the full potential of these new machines. During her own lifetime Ada was most famous for being the daughter of romantic poet Lord Byron ('mad, bad and dangerous to know'). It was only with the advent of modern computing that Ada's understanding of their flexibility and power (that they could be far more than mere number crunchers) was recognised as truly visionary. Hannah explores how Ada's unique inheritance - poetic imagination and rational logic - made her the ideal prophet of the digital age. This moving, intelligent and beautiful film makes you realise we nearly had a Victorian computer revolution.

You might also like

Fusion Power Explained – Future or Failure

How does Fusion Energy work and is it a good idea?

In a NutshellTechnology

Do You Trust this Computer

Science fiction has long anticipated the rise of machine intelligence. Today, a new generation of self-learning computers is reshaping every aspect of our lives. Incomprehensible amounts of data are being collected, interpreted, and fed back to us in a tsunami of apps, smart devices, and targeted advertisements. Virtually every industry on earth is feeling this transformation, from job automation to medical diagnostics, from elections to battlefield weapons. Do You Trust This Computer? explores the promises and perils of this developing era. Will A.I. usher in an age of unprecedented potential, or prove to be our final invention?

2018 • Technology

How does your smartphone know your location?

GPS location apps on a smartphone can be very handy when mapping a travel route or finding nearby events. But how does your smartphone know where you are?

TED-EdTechnology

The Swiss Army Knife, the Winglet, English Saddle

We explore the hidden history and super science of the Swiss Army Knife, the Winglet and the English Saddle.

1/10Incredible Inventions • 2017 • Technology

American Made Marvels

The rise of the skyscraper coincided with the rise of America as a global superpower, and experts reveal how expert engineering and cutting-edge technology helped power humankind's race to conquer the sky.

1/6Skyscrapers Engineering the Future • 2019 • Technology

Back to the Future

Tech billionaires launch a new generation of aerospace companies, setting their sights on colonizing Mars and exploring the universe.

4/4Blue Sky Metropolis • 2020 • Technology