Abstract

The 2011 opening at the Computer History Museum of the world’s largest and most complete physical and cyber exhibit of computing history marks the sixth stage of a public museum’s evolution, which began in 1975 with a closet-sized exhibit in a Digital Equipment Corporation building, migrating to The Computer Museum, Boston. It now lives in a 119,000 square foot public home plus its artifact storage facility. This chance/luck driven evolution of an institution is due to the dedication and leadership of a few people who persuaded hundreds of others that the endeavor was worthwhile and needed their support. They2 would not let it die! Behind nearly every artifact, exhibit, and pioneering effort is a story that the museum is dedicated to understand and tell. This is the story leading to the Computer History Museum.