Check out this video from CNET TV. It shows the original Cray 1 and discusses how Star Trek influenced the design of the granddaddy of the supercomputers.
I've already mentioned how a typical laptop today has more raw CPU power than a Cray supercomputer from 1988. The Cray in that discussion was the Cray Y-MP from 1988. It wasn't the first Cray supercomputer however. The very first Cray supercomputer was the Cray 1, which was built in 1976.
This video shows the Cray 1 and tells how Star Trek influenced the signature-curved tower design of the Cray supercomputer line. Along the way, you get a mini-Cracking Open as they look inside the Cray 1.
Bicentennial computing power
If a typical laptop CPU outpowers a Cray Y-MP from 1988, your typical iPhone has more computing power than a Cray 1. The Cray 1 ran on only an 80Mhz vector processor CPU. Processing power would top out at 136 Megaflops. (Remember that a typical laptop today can do about 15GIGAflops.) It could support a maximum memory of 8MB of RAM — unheard of in those days.
How much would such a computer set you back? A mere $8 million. In today's money, that's a relative bargain of only $28 million. By comparison, IBM Roadrunner costs $133 million. Certainly that's more FLOPS for the bucks, but it also shows how expensive the pinnacle of computing is now compared to 32 years ago.