Back in the U.S.S.R
- November 18, 1992. Wednesday. Deep in the heart of Siberia lives a winking monster. It is rumored to occupy an entire floor and to be outfitted with thousands of flashing console lights. Once part of the U.S.S.R.'s military, space, engineering, meteorological, and computer-science programs, it is the last working version of the legendary BESM-6 supercomputer. It stands amid the debris of its three compatriots, which have been smashed and melted down for the salvage value of their precious-metal content. I have pushed forward the timing of our visit to the former Soviet Union in an effort to save the last machine from the same violent fate.