THE BRITISH LIBRARY

Sound and vision blog

24 June 2019

Recording of the week: Frank Land OBE - from Nazi Germany to the tea shop electronic brain

This week's selection comes from Dr Tom Lean, Project Interviewer for An Oral History of British Science.

Amongst the awards in this month's Queen's Birthday Honours list was a much deserved OBE for An Oral History of British Science interviewee Frank Land, Britain's first professor of information systems and a pioneer of business computing.

In this clip from his interview, Frank recalls the path that led him from a childhood in 1930s Nazi Germany to become one of the early programmers of Lyons Electronic Office, or "LEO", the world's first business computer, created in the 1950s by catering company J Lyons & Co to automate the business operations of their chain of tea shops.

021I-C1379X0017XX-0001A1Frank Land with his twin brother

Frank Land on emigration, education and working for Lyons (C1379/17)

The full interview with Frank Land can be listened to here.

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