One of the earliest “computers” looked nothing like the sleek silver tablets and laptops we’re used to seeing. Known as the Antikythera Mechanism, the device featured a series of impressively sophisticated dials and gears used for tracking astronomical events. Today’s Google Doodle celebrates the anniversary of the device’s discovery, which occurred 115 years ago in 1902.
A Greek archaeologist uncovered the artifact in the remains of a Roman cargo ship off the coast of Antikythera, a Greek island between Crete and Peloponnese. The artifact had spent 2,000 years beneath the sea, and even after its discovery, it took a while for experts to recognize its importance.
According to Smithsonian Magazine, scholars from Wales brought widespread attention to the Antikythera Mechanism in 2006. The device, which could be controlled by a crank, shows some of the earliest forms of astronomical mapping and technological development. Gears moved hands that displayed the timing of celestial cycles, charting moon phases and the rise and fall of stars. Smithsonian Magazine also reports that inscriptions revealed the dates of the Olympics and other major festivals.
If you want a look at the machinery in person, head to Greece’s National Archaeological Museum in Athens, where it’s currently housed.