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By Peter Matthiessen

Whilst Matthiessen went to Nepal to check the Himalayan blue sheep and, in all probability, to glimpse the infrequent and gorgeous snow leopard, he undertook his five-week trek as wintry weather snows have been sweeping into the excessive passes. it is a radiant and deeply relocating account of a "true pilgrimage, a trip of the heart."

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Sample text

After some early successes I had to admit, however, that mechanical solutions were not flexible enough for such tasks . For two years I had battled with mechanical constructions until I finally had to give up . U nfortunatcly, these devices were destroyed in the air raids, but I was able to develop and test the basic laws of switching techniques with them. Mathematical logic helped me in this . The transition from mechanics to electromechanics and also to electronic solutions was thereby greatly facilitated .

For instance, in communications construction certain special relays with fall and pick-up delay times were used, and he advised me to use these for my computing relays. The problem here is that, in general, the coils of the next relay group must be switched via the contacts of the previous group, which explains why the relays of the first group cannot be allowed to fall immediately. In principle, this could be solved using fall delay relays, and it has probably been tried in many ways. But the process has definite disadvantages.

I'm hones t eno ugh to admit that I worked blind; I did no t know pr ecisely how thi s monster , that was taking sha pe th er e, was supposed to fun ct ion . And ye t, the ma ch ine was com pleted, worked with an unhol y ra ttl e and supplied precise solu tions to com plica ted tasks. It took up almost th e en tire living room . It was a permanent fixture in the ap artm en t. I think that it was only aft er th e house was bombed during the war that th e first Zu se Universal com pu ting machine co uld be moved into th e mus eum .

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