God Save the King.
An Early Musical Program on the Ferranti Mark 1
David Link


In September 1951, the school teacher Christopher Strachey showed up in the computing laboratory of Manchester University with an algorithm of enormous length. After a couple of errors were fixed, the program ran straight through and finished by playing God Save the King on the built-in hooter (loudspeaker) of the Ferranti Mark 1 computer, which had been installed there in February.

The article provides a detailed account of the software, which has been preserved in Bodleian Library, Oxford.

David Link, God Save the King. An Early Musical Program on the Ferranti Mark 1. Resurrection. The Journal of the Computer Conservation Society 76 (2016/7): 11–16.

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