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February 7, 2019

Computer power sufficient to take Apollo 11 to the moon: "A digital watch"


I recall watching the Discovery Science Channel's 2006 documentary about Apollo 11, "First on the Moon: The Untold Story." 

It was riveting — especially the first public revelation that Neil Armstrong came within a fraction of a second of dying in a fiery explosion while test-flying a lunar landing module simulator.

There is spectacular footage of him ejecting from the vehicle and parachuting to the ground while the lander simulator crashes and burns.

One of the grand panjandrums of Mission Control was talking about the computers used to make the mission happen.

He said the entire floor of computers at Mission Control wasn't as powerful as one of today's laptop computers, and that the computers inside the Apollo 11 lander cumulatively had "about the processing power of a digital watch."

So here's my question: how come when I go out running wearing my Casio F-91W digital watch (top) I don't go into orbit?

February 7, 2019 at 02:01 PM | Permalink


Dr. Joe,

I like the link to the Casio watch on Amazon. You'd think that for $10.67 it would have the power to let me go into orbit too! LOL :-)

Posted by: Brian McFerron | Feb 7, 2019 3:36:01 PM

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