About

Our Mission


The University of Waterloo Computing Museum is university-based museum, whose purpose is to collect, preserve and interpret the history of computing at the University of Waterloo (UW) and related organizations of the geographic region. The time period it focuses on is primarily from 1957 (the year UW was established) to the present. However, artifacts from before this date may still be relevant, and the mission explicitly includes non-modern (i.e.: non-electronic) computing machinery and methods. The museum collects various computing related artifacts: hardware, software, documents, books, manuals, and other related cultural artifacts. As appropriate, it collaborates and cooperates with other UW units that hold overlapping interests, such as the University Archives and Records Management or various Alumni offices. The museum interprets and presents the history of computing at UW via physical and online exhibits, research, teaching, public events and publications. It exists to encourage the UW community to recognize, reflect and interpret its own history.



Do you have an old computer taking up space in your office (or your garage)? Are there old manuals on your bookshelf for software you haven't touched in decades? Don't just send it off to be recycled quite yet!

In particular, we're interested in artifacts of direct or slightly indirect relevance to the history of computing here at Waterloo.

  • Did you keep your old lab manuals from a computer course? Let us know!
  • Do you still have your old slide rule or programmable calculator in your desk drawer but haven't used it in decades? We could use it for a display!
  • Did you work at a Waterloo spin-off on your co-op term and you still have some manuals sitting around? Let us know!
  • Did you scratch-build a personal computer for a research project and you just didn't know who might be interested? We'd love to talk to you!
  • Have you been keeping a collection of old hardware and software on punch cards hidden in a closet somewhere, just waiting for someone to start a museum? Well, now is the time!

Then just email our curators (make sure you include your name and email or phone number!) and we'll arrange a visit to assess your treasures and hopefully add them to our collection!

Scott Campbell is the Director of the Centre for Society, Technology and Values. His research interests include the history of computing in Canada.

Lawrence Folland is manager of Research Support for the School of Computer Science.


Credits


We'd like to thank the following people and organizations for contributing to the development of the museum through their hard work or financial and material assistance.

Individuals

  • Angela Tran
  • Calum Patrick
  • Chrisoula Vergis
  • Conrad Heidebrecht
  • Erika Szostak
  • John Oss
  • Lawrence Folland
  • Lynn Qin
  • Matt Ulbrick
  • Scott Campbell
  • Teresa Branch-Smith
  • Trevor R. Grove
  • Wendy Stocker

Organizations

  • Centre for Society, Technology and Values, UW
  • David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science, UW
  • Graduate Studies Endowment Fund, UW
  • Institute for Computer Research, UW
  • Waterloo chair in Science and Society, UW

Artifact donors are listed on the "Donors" page.


Questions, Donations, or Tours?

Curators:

Scott Campbell
Centre for Society, Technology and Values
scott.campbell@uwaterloo.ca
Engineering 3 room 3174
519-888-4567 x35635
Lawrence Folland
School of Computer Science
lawrence.folland@uwaterloo.ca
Davis Centre room 2607
519-888-4567 x32214
Museum Assistants:

musecoop@uwaterloo.ca
musetech@uwaterloo.ca