You know you want this badass Victorian scientist to glower at you from a corner of your desk accompanied by her massive steampunkish Analytical Engine and an oversized spanner.
Ada Lovelace is now most famously known as the mother of computer science, but during her lifetime, she was also well known on account of her famous father: Lord Byron. Although Ada never met her father, his scandalous behavior had a profound effect on how she was raised — on a strict diet of mathematics.
Charles Babbage's difference engine—the mechanical precursor to today's digital computers—is a beautifully intricate machine. Now, you can take a real close look at it using this gigapixel image.
Not even IMDB seems to know whether Zooey Deschanel has been cast as Ada Lovelace in Enchantress of Numbers, but Lovelace and Babbage's Analytical Engine computer shall be finally built—if programmer/blogger John Graham-Cunning can raise enough money.
For those who haven't yet heard, a band of number-crunching nostalgists took the concept design for Charles Babbage's Difference Engine No. 2, and turned it into a real, fully functional machine. But what really makes the Difference Engine amazing is only noticed when you watch its thousands of moving parts in action.…