Transporting a computer to India in the 1960s was no easy feat. Apart from using a bullock cart, and also breaking a wall, the team had to get the machine through road blocks that collected customs taxes for road maintenance, for which the money had to come through additional AID grants.
The computer room wasn’t finished, and monsoon season had left an inch of water on the floor where the computer was to go. To add to the difficulties, the power in India ran at 50 cycles, while the computer needed 60 cycles.
Through numerous telegrams between IBM and Kanpur, they were eventually able to convert the power and adjust the voltage, and after three long weeks, the machine was up and running.
We today have the power of 1000s of those super computers, just in the palm of our hands. According to Barclays’ analysts, if human productivity was 100 units in 1765 (when the steam engine was invented), it increased to 1500 in the 1960s, and has doubled to over 3000 in just 5 decades thereafter. We are so productive but has that led to increase happiness as well? We should each introspect, and make peace with whatever we already have.