Viva Computer - A people's history of computing

Viva Computer Video ArchiveViva Computer records the memories of the engineers, inventors, microchip designers, game developers, tech entrepreneurs and end users who have helped create the high-tech world we live in today. Their stories, freely available in this audio-visual archive, help us gain a deeper understanding of the computing industry’s history of innovation, and Cambridge’s unique position within it. Many of the stories are told by the innovators of the time; others are told by ordinary people who kindly told their stories as part of our public events.

Viva Computer! is supported by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

The interviewees have been generous in sharing their memories and visitors to these pages are asked to treat this material with respect and sensitivity. The content of oral history interviews is personal, experiential and interpretive because, by its nature, it relies on the memories, perceptions and opinions of individuals. If you refer to this material elsewhere, please present the recordings in context so that interviewees’ meanings are not misconstrued.

All interviewees have given permission for the video to be preserved as a permanent public reference resource for use in research, publication, education, lectures, broadcasting and the internet. The views expressed in these recordings should not be taken as statements of fact or opinion endorsed by The Centre for Computing History or by any of the organisations referred therein.

The Centre for Computing History is committed to continuing this project. If you’d like to be part of the story, please get in touch.

Be part of the story... a producer/editor!

We currently have unedited footage that needs to be put together and made available online. If you are proficent with video editing software and methods, and have the time to help, please do get in touch. a storyteller!

We are looking for local people with computing stories

Viva Computer Oral History ProjectDon’t let your story go untold. Please contact us to arrange a time and date to have a chat. a story collector!

We are looking for people interested in contributing their time, experience, and passion to continue this project.


As a volunteer you would be part of a team, capturing the stories of some of leading thinkers and innovators and finding out the vital contributions they made to the digital world. We are always looking for people to fill the role of researcher, interviewer, camera technician, sound recordist and sound and video editor to extend our digital archive.

If you are interested, please contact us.


Learning Resources

These are the some of the learning resources used during the Viva Computer! Festival in July 2016. Each week of the festival had a theme and there is online material for each one, via Hstry (a collaborative website for creating learning resources). The materials have Viva Computer! interviews embedded within them so they’re a great way of bringing computing history to life. Teachers – feel free to use with your students. We’d love to hear how you use them so don’t hesitate to let us know how they worked for you.







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