LEGO Turing Machine

Hello there, this is my first post here. I've been reading the posts and discussions at ltu for a few years but never found anything to post about before and hence, never registered. However, I just saw this on YouTube and felt that I had to post about it here so I finally got an account. The timing seems appropriate given that Gordon Brown just issued a formal apology for the treatment of Alan Turing. Maybe Turing and thus computing is finally getting some well deserved attention in the public sphere.

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Now, who's up for designing a Tinkertoy graph reduction engine?

Transition Function not Demoed

Is it just me, or it is not completely clear from the demo, whether the machine is a self-contained implementation of a TM (including transition function) or is it a mere sensor/actuator controlled by a separate computer?

Transition via Lego Mindstorm

The Lego Mindstorm kit provides microcontrollers; the older version has an H8, and newer versions have an ARM and an AVR chip in them.

It would be rather impractical to implement the transition function mechanically, although this device is self contained and doesn't rely upon an external laptop or desktop except for programming.

Yes, the fact that it is not

Yes, the fact that it is not implemented completely by mechanical means does make it a bit less interesting. I should have provided links for further details. This is where I originally read about it. There are further links from there.