BCS - An Introduction to the Archives of IT

3rd May 2022 7:00 pm

Archives of IT is a free-to-access online museum and archive that records and presents the modern history of the UK IT and Coms industry, its achievements and its impact on society. The collection consists of oral history of members of the industry and selected documents that inform on topics from the period. The timescale of interest is c 1950 to the present, including current developments and thoughts on the future from interviewees. The archive complements the collections of artefacts and machines in other museums.

Tom Abram will talk about the collection of oral history, including the kind of people interviewed and scope of the conversation, illustrating with examples. Similarly, he will describe the collections of documents, including periodical sets and one-off donations.

Material is gathered into themes that reflect the development of the industry. Tom will show, with examples, how the material can be aggregated to present interesting “stories” from the industry and to enable scholars and enthusiasts to explore aspects of the industry, for research.

The audience will be shown how they can make a virtual visit to the museum from anywhere in the world with an internet connection to explore the data and the presentation outputs.

Tom will present some of the highlights to be found in the museum and the plans for the future.

Tom Abram, Executive Director, Archives of IT

Tom Abram studied Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester, gaining a PhD for work on the design of a real-time digital signal processor. After working on technology for airborne systems at the Ministry of Defence, he ran the consultancy arm of a leading software house and established the Management Consulting business in Europe for US outsourcer EDS.

He developed the software company Mantix into advisors to Government and City on major programmes of IT and business change. Tom has been active in industry bodies, including EURIM (The Digital Policy Alliance); Intellect (Tech UK); BCS and WCIT.

John Carrington, Chair of Trustee Board, Archives of IT

John Carrington was educated at LSE, Edinburgh University and the LBS. He worked at BT for over 20 years, joining when it was part of the GPO. From 1983, he played a key role in the development of cellular communications in the UK and Europe. John was the founding CEO of Cellnet – now O2. He was an initial signatory in 1987 of the agreement that established the digital international cellular standard, GSM. After BT John worked in Cable and Wireless developing cellular businesses in the UK and worldwide before becoming the Management Board member responsible for operations in 34 countries, including the Caribbean. From 1995, John worked with a number of emerging companies as Chair or CEO. Now retired from industry, he was Chair of the Council of Gresham College 2014 – 2019 and currently Chairs the Woodbridge Tide Mill Charitable Trust.

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