Punched card office, 1930.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Reconstruction at the Science Museum in London of a typical punched card office of the 1930s, containing full-scale replica punched card accounting equipment. On the left is a sorter, an automatic key punch is on the desk, and beneath the window is a tabulator. By the 1930s, similar machines were used by many industrial and commercial companies to proces the huge quantities of information concerned with payrolls, invoices, store inventories and insurance policies. These machines were once part of an installation where the number of tabulators ran into double figures.