Information processing has transformed large swathes of modern society since its beginnings at the end of the 19th century. It has been a major driving force in the astonishingly rapid development of electronic components - the very heart and brains of information processing. The plummeting costs and size, and increased performance of those components continue to relentlessly push information processing technologies deeper and deeper into the fabric of society. This process continues to provoke major societal changes, the controversies over the future of newspapers and copyright law being two current examples.
History provides a lens to examine the past and its connection with the present an to allow us to better prepare for the future.
ACONIT, the Association for a Conservatory of Information Technology, founded in 1985 with principle objective of preserving the history of computing and creating tools to better understand and explain to the general public the risks and rewards of current developments in the information processing as it permeates deeper into society.
An extensive collection, among the largest in Europe, has been constituted comprising of machines, software, documentation and other artifacts.
The ACONIT team, composed of volunteers crossing generational boundaries, maintain a close watch on and contribute to developments in fields as diverse as retro-gaming to mainframes restoration. Participation in, and organization of international conferences, has brought widespread recognition of ACONIT initiatives and skills.
ACONIT regularly organizes and accepts requests for guided visits to its collection, workshops, conferences and other events for schools, industry, students, and the general public. It offers tailored exhibitions, for rent, adapted to specific needs. E.g. the exhibition "Computing Chronicles : by hand and eye", designed for a general audience, relates the history of the interaction between man and the multitude of tools (from ancient Sumer to the last innovations) devised to help in his ever expanding need to compute and process information.
In the development and distribution of communication material (web 2.0, ...)
With the inventory of the collection : the classification,research and identification of items
In developing reports on past computing achievements, their impact on society, and possible consequences for the future.
In helping restoring machines and recovering software from old media.
The establishment of a center of excellence dedicated to computer gaming. Development of emulation systems, conservation and restoration of vintage computer games.
Your help can be equally valuable whether offered locally in Grenoble or remotely via the web.
Though only a small part of our web site is currently available in English, please note :
The inventory data base commands and captions are available in English (you can switch between French and English via a simple click).
The "computer science gallery" is the first draft of the future "virtual museum". Very basic to day, but a pleasant way to visit about 300 objets from ACONIT collection. All descriptions are presently in French but in some months... they will be available in English also...
Première publication :
Mise en ligne le samedi 2 août 2014