The Geek Atlas: terrific tech shrines that every geek should see

This new book outlines the best places in the world for nerds and geeks to visit before they die. We selected some favorite places, including the HP Garage, the MIT Museum, and da Vinci's last home.

National Electronics Museum, Linthicum, Maryland



The National Electronics Museum focuses on the application of electronics to defense, and has the most important collection of radar equipment in the world. The museum begins with an introduction to electronics and magnetism designed for beginners.

Three galleries cover the history of radar, starting with British work in the 1930s through the attack on Pearl Harbor and the Second World War.

The second radar gallery covers advances in radar to cope with the Cold War--Doppler radar was developed so that surface-to-air missiles could attack nuclear bombers, and eventually became the technology used to trap speeding motorists.

The final radar gallery covers modern radar systems, including the AWACS rotating dome, airport radar, and a demonstration of phased array radar.

Outside the museum are a number of large exhibits: a TPS-43 transportable U.S. radar used for ground sensing of aircraft, a TPS-70 that replaced the TPS-43, and a Nike AJAX antiaircraft radar used to steer the Nike AJAX missile to its target.

Shown above is a Morse telegraph machine.

Photo courtesy of the National Electronics Museum.

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