At the International Conference on the History of Computing held in Los Alamos in 1976, R.W. Hamming placed his proposed agenda in the title of his paper: "We Would Know What They Thought When They Did It." He pleaded for a history of computing that pursued the contextual development of ideas, rather than merely listing names, dates, and places of "firsts". Moreover, he exhorted historians to go beyond the documents to "informed speculation" about the results of undocumented practice. What people actually did and what they thought they were doing may well not be accurately reflected in what they wrote and what they said they were thinking. His own experience had taught him that.