Discovered amidst the wreckage of a sunken ship off the coast of Greece in 1901, the Antikythera Mechanism (previously featured here on Open Culture) is often considered the world’s oldest known analog computer. Dating back to approximately 150–100 BCE, the device has a complex arrangement of precisely cut gears, all designed to track celestial movements, predict lunar and solar eclipses, and chart the positions of planets. It’s a testament to Ancient Greek engineering. Above, you can see a fully functional replica of the Antikythera Mechanism re-created in LEGO, courtesy of the scientific journal Nature. As one YouTuber put it, “The device is unbelievably cool, and the video is masterfully done.”
If you would like to support the mission of Open Culture, consider making a donation to our site. It’s hard to rely 100% on ads, and your contributions will help us continue providing the best free cultural and educational materials to learners everywhere. You can contribute through PayPal, Patreon, and Venmo (@openculture). Thanks!