In a 1948 paper, he envisaged using a digital electronic computer for providing information over a national telecommunications network:
"In the non-mathematical field there is a wide scope for the use of the techniques in such things as filing systems. It is not inconceivable that an automatic encyclopaedic service operated through the national teleprinter, or telephone system, will one day exist."
He bet that he could make an electronic device that would be 1000 times faster than the best electronic device of the time. Just one of his calculators filled a small room, weighing 7 tons.