So a couple of academics were asked to build a vacuum tube-based calculating machine.
This they did.
The resulting machine used 18,000 tubes, weighed 30 tons, measured 100ft x 8ft x 3ft and cost $500,000 ($12.7m in today’s money).
Unfortunately for the war effort, the machine was completed in November 1945 – the same month that peace was declared.
Moral: Timing is important.