When we were getting the tram back from the German Museum to the Central Station where our hotel is, we were looking for the display showing the time we would have to wait for the next trams. There weren’t any. Instead, they had a printed timetable displayed showing the exact arrival of the tram. And, again, of course, the tram arrived exactly at the time shown in the time table for this stop. No need for any digital displays.
The Museum is mind-blowingly nerdy. The level of detail in each of the sections is incredible. And it’s not about any-things it the ‘things’ themselves. So – it’s not about the famous Enigma encoding machine, they have a few of the 100,000 machines used by the Germans during the war (and de-coded by a team around Alan Turing) on display, the originals. They have an Apple II, the first Mac, the first Apple laptop, the first DOS IBM PCs (I have one of those in the attic, I noticed with surprise:), the first analog computers and many, many more historic machines you otherwise only find in books. Informatics is just one section. They do the same for weather forecasts, for weights and weighing machines, and other weird and wonderful stuff.
In the morning, we had decided to walk with Pádraig to the Isar river where the museum is located. When we stepped out on the footpath it was so cold that we decided to step back in to the next Brauhaus to have what we would have called Sunday Brunch, the German called it dinner. Back out on the footpath to the famous Marienplatz, freezing cold feet, nose and hand, back into Cafe Rischart where we had cake that was almost too nice to look at for it to be eaten. Rischart started their business in 1883 and they used that time to really get it all right.
The one thing Pádraig did not enjoy was the demo session in the Museum where they showed how high voltage electricity works. Saying that there were some sparks flying would be an understatement. But otherwise, he really enjoyed the day, the walks, the meals, a bit of Bavarian beer, the people walking by, the cold air, the tram ride…
We’ll have to get up early tomorrow to catch a train to Burgau.
PS: I’ve been thinking about the business of encoding messages. Why they used the Enigma. How they managed to break the unbreakable code. About what happened to the man and his team who broke the code.