Not to be confused with the Glooper.
May 24, 2008 10:46 PM Subscribe
posted by Upton O'Good (12 comments total)
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The Phillips Machine
, also known as the Moniac
, is a early analog computer for economic modeling with an unusual twist: all of the computation is done by water flowing through its pipes. The flows represent taxes, income, and so on, and the chambers
represent balances held by various bodies. Floats attached to pens can provide graphical output such things as GDP and interest rates, and valves can be opened and shut to change the state of the system in real time. You can listen to a BBC radio segment
on the origin of Phillips machine, or see a demonstration
of one of the only extant working models at the University of Cambridge.
For a more in-depth discussion of its workings, this book
has a chapter devoted to the subject, with diagrams, equations, and explanations.