I've been thinking about this concept for a while and have not been able to figure out what could be a plausible answer. It seemed appropriate for my first question on this website.
Imagine an experiment where a group of approximately 20 humans are dropped off on a fairly small (~1000 km²) island that contains all necessary resources as they would appear in a natural environment. The group would then receive the challenge to - starting completely from scratch - build a fully functioning computer system capable of running at least Windows 1.0 with usable speed and then run it successfully as fast as possible. They would start off with no tools or resources. These are the rules and conditions that would be present:
- The group of humans would not need to worry about life supporting and maintaining issues such as food, clothing, weather conditions, natural disasters and hostile wildlife.
- The group would know exactly how to find and assemble any items involved in the process of creating the machine.
- The group consists of young and fit humans that would not experience any social issues within the group, and would not tire from consistent 12-hour working days.
- For convenience, we assume that the humans would not age or die during their participation in this experiment.
- The island contains any necessary resource in completely raw form. Materials like metals may be present in a higher-than-natural rate to ensure there is enough available for completing the challenge.
As I started thinking more about this concept, I began expecting the minimum time needed to achieve such a goal would probably be at least 5 years (Edit: way above). However I am probably underestimating the time it would take to obtain some of the necessary materials and build all of the advanced machinery that is used in assembling a fully functional computer system.
Could anyone suggest a reasonable time estimate for completing such an extreme task/challenge? What would be the biggest obstacles along the way?
As this is my first time ever post on any StackExchange website, feel free to point out anything I should be doing differently.
Edit: The challenge does not require building a version of the hardware that was actually being used to run and interact with the OS. As long as it gets the job done and the system is able to run at usable speeds, it could be built from any material and can be as big as it needs to be.
Edit: I have accepted Karl's answer as it portrays the most factual sequence of steps that would have to be taken in order for the team to achieve the necessary level of technology for building the machine.