Imagine if you can a Great Britain and Northern Ireland today which stands four-square at the top of the computer industries of the world. Imagine a manufacturing industry based in a real ‘Silicon Glen’ which furnished some thirty percent of the world’s hardware, and another fifteen percent spewing out of an overcrowded M4 corridor. The planning authorities have just approved a request for the largest factory in the world which will be solely devoted to the manufacture of superfast S.D.R.A.M. memory chips sited on the shores of Lough Neagh, and the software industries of Wales and the Republic of Ireland are just now noticing the arrival of a newcomer based in Seattle, but aren’t unduly worried as they have got a lock on the operating systems of a good ninety percent of the installed computers. FlowerPower Limited has just revealed it’s year-end results, which make the family-owned company the most profitable in the entire Western world, and the Treasury, basking in the twentieth straight year of double digit growth, has reduced the standard rate of Income Tax to just above seven percent!
PipeDream? Possibly! Never Happen? Not Really!
We had a head start on everyone, including the Americans, through the work of the code-breakers and builders of Bletchley Park; we made the first functioning (then) super-computer in 1943, and lead the world in the development of Information Technology! We gave the world a headstart in the use of valve-based computing power in the exploitation of the “Collossus” computer, developed by Alan Turing, the mathematical genius, operational some four years ahead of the similar American ‘ENIAC’ long lauded by the Americans (naturally) as the true birth of the computer. When World War Two ended, we had a core of some ten thousand skilled scientific, mathematical and technical people who were used to doing the impossible; the Post Office engineer Tommy Flowers had built both the ‘bombes’ which were the backbone of the ‘Enigma’ code-breaking efforts against the U-Boat offensive in the Atlantic, and ‘Colossus’ itself, based wholly on the designs inspired by the fantastically-agile mind of Alan Turing!
We had everything, and we threw it all away, in a mess of government cock-ups, civil service plotting and a deeply-censorious dislike of homosexuals, of which Turing was one! Despite the vast array of talent, nothing was built on the foundations of the Bletchley Park work until the Ferranti computers arrived in the late Forties, while Turing was being squeezed out of all computing works because someone in M.I.5 had decreed that no ‘queer’ was to be involved in ‘Secret’ works, despite being, to all intents, the father of the code-breaking computer industry! He committed suicide on 7th June 1954, after being subjected to a year of ‘chemical castration’ as part of his sentence for a homosexual affair. Apart from the code-breakers of G.C.H.Q., nothing was saved from Bletchley, and the ‘Collossus’ machines were individually smashed apart, for some strange, bureaucratic purpose no doubt!
I hold no admiration for either the homosexual cause, or indeed for homosexuals, or, as they prefer, the ‘Gay’ culture; although to be perfectly honest I have never noticed much gaiety around their ilk. But just imagine, if you can, what this country could and indeed should have achieved if this true genius had been left alone, and this country of ours had grasped all the knowledge it held, and allowed it’s dissemination instead of classifying everything “Top Secret”?