This is a full working simulation of the world's first computer: the Antikythera Mechanism, an ancient Greek device accidentally discovered a century ago on an extraordinary shipwreck.
Bringing the mechanism back to life, this special app allows the user to investigate in great detail how the ancients viewed the cosmos.
The crank input can be controlled by the point slider at the bottom, enabling clockwise and anti-clockwise motion at varying speeds. Use the swipe rotate and pinch zoom features to navigate in and around the mechanism. Another point slide is also available at the side for panning vertically. The Calendar dial can be rotated using the + - controls on the bottom left of the screen.
Two viewing modes are available for selection at the top; the external mode offers a detailed look at all the dials and the internal mode offers a close inspection of the gear arrangements which drive all eight outputs.
WARNING: Due to the high graphics requirements to run this app, please consider that this app only runs smoothly on the latest three generations of iPhone and only the latest two generations of iPad.
1) The app now incorporates within the mechanism the planet indicators of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn along with the Sun and Moon indicators. The conjectural used gearing is based on the paper: 'The Cosmos in the Antikythera Mechanism' written by Tony Freeth and Alexander Jones, 2012.
2) Colour rendering has been addressed and the viewing of the inscriptions is improved.
4) Top left button allows the user to select a date between 01/01/1900 and 01/01/2051 where the planetary alignments will be shown for that specific date.
5) Please note that app may not work on iPhones older than 3 generations and iPads older than 2 generations.
Ratings and ReviewsSee All
A little bit of historical background information would be nice as well as description of the functionality and just how advanced this device was.
Developer Response ,
Hi BaltimoreDave, thank you for your feedback. Description, functionality, origin and historical background can now be found on our website: antikytheramechanism.com
Awesome app! Well done!
1) render the faces of the teeth in slightly different colors. If you zoom in then the white just makes it really hard to see.
2) the ability to "explode" the device - stretch all the parts (or the major components) out in the direction of the axis of rotation - would be helpful to see inside it.
3) there are multiple dials, it would be great if one could click on a single dial (or toggle an option or something) and make transparent all the other parts of the mechanism. So a user could see and understand just the gears that drive (say) the Olympic Games pointer and make all the other parts translucent. If a differential is in use then coloring each path differently would help. The "visible body" app does this well.
4) rotation about all axes would be helpful.
5) some way to see the operation of the pin and slot gear that handles the lunar inequality would be useful.
6) A big ask but a tutorial or guide to give the user an understanding about how each part works would complete this. The "4D" app for explaining the tesseract is excellent for this.
This thing is really cool to look at, but there's a problem. You see it works on my iPhone SE just fine, but for some reason, it doesn't work at all on my iPad mini 2 running iOS 9.3.5. It just crashes upon opening! I know it's an old OS on old hardware, but this is not an app that needs a whole lot of power. I mean, you can't run the first computer on an iPad that's only a few years old? Come on! I can't even see what it says on iOS! So please fix this, and I'll give full stars, otherwise 2.
Developer Response ,
Jurassicjordan, many thanks for your valued feedback. The problem is that only one build can be created to accommodate all iOS hardware and as we try to update the simulation, add detail and functions which closely represent the original mechanism, the very first devices such as the ipad and ipad 2 struggle to work. This is why we included a notice on the App description page that it may not work on iPad 2 devices and below. The next update will include the rotating planets and although it may require slightly more processing power to run, we will make the upmost to try and make it work on older ipad devices.
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The developer will be required to provide privacy details when they submit their next app update.
With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.