The Geek Atlas: terrific tech shrines that every geek should see

This new book outlines the best places in the world for nerds and geeks to visit before they die. We selected some favorite places, including the HP Garage, the MIT Museum, and da Vinci's last home.

Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, Michigan

The name Henry Ford immediately evokes images of the Model T, but Ford built more than cars. In Dearborn, Michigan, he constructed an enormous history museum with a fascinating collection of scientific and technological exhibits alongside American cultural artifacts.

The Henry Ford consists of a museum and an entire village of houses; because of the size of the site, carefully planning your visit is worthwhile. The Henry Ford's Web site has interactive tools for deciding what to visit and where to find objects of interest.

The museum contains entire homes and laboratories that were moved to the Henry Ford and put on display. The most interesting of these are the bicycle shop and home of the Wright Brothers and the reconstruction of Thomas Edison's Menlo Park, New Jersey, laboratory. You'll also find Buckminster Fuller's Dymaxion House prototype, a circular home made entirely of aluminum that could be delivered on a truck and was designed to be energy- and space-efficient.

Of course, the museum also has an extensive collection of cars and car-related memorabilia (including the neon sign used to illuminate the first McDonald's fast-food restaurant). The museum also has a model of the (happily) never-created Ford Nucleon nuclear-powered car, and you have the chance to take a ride in a restored Model T.

Shown here is the Ford Quadricycle.

Photo courtesy of DougW, Wikimedia Commons.

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