From: Chuck Simmons
Organization: You jest.
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Subject: Re: Monrobot XI
References: <3D8E5A29.B4BCE8B9@managesoft.com> <3D8E6F7C.234304F9@webaccess.net> <3D8FA564.1A8925EF@managesoft.com>
Date: Tue, 24 Sep 2002 00:46:03 GMT
NNTP-Posting-Date: Mon, 23 Sep 2002 17:46:03 PDT
Clifford Heath wrote:
> Chuck Simmons wrote:
> > Transistor computers computers go back further than you think. As early
> > as 1955 or before,
> Yep, I know that. In the first five years still counts as "one of the
> first" in my book.
> > I am wondering if Monrobot XI was really the name of a piece of software
> > running in a PDP-5 or 8 (they were very similar).
> Nope, built by Monroe Calculating Machine Co. Used IBM electro-mechanical
> typewriters and paper tape as I/O, and also had a "Monroecard" reader
> which took magnetic cards, same size as a punched card. Main storage
> was on a drum which held 1024 or 2048 32-bit words - that was the "RAM"!
> 17ms average access time, a real speed demon.
> There was a sort-of assembler but we never learned to use it, instead
> typing in machine code in hexadecimal (STUVWX instead of ABCDEF as now)
> after hand assembly. 3XXX was "call", TXXX was load, etc. Registers 0-7
> were written 16 times around a single track on the drum to reduce read
> latency to just over 1ms.
> BTW there was a IC microprocessor made with the PDP-8 instruction set,
> I forget the designation but had details somewhere.
> Thanks Ken for the details about the Charles Babbage manual set. I had
> found that too, but Minnesota is a long way from Australia :-) I hoped
> to find something online.
> Clifford Heath
The PDP-8s were made by Mostek originally for DEC before DEC built its
Hudson, MA plant. Early Hudson designs were things like the LSI-11 that
was found in the PDP-11/23 and 11/24 (and others) and the Tiny-11 which
was not very successful. Later they did the MicroVAX I and II and
finally Alpha. My first project at DEC was a single chip disk
controller. Quantum continued to use follow ons of that controller
(project start in September, 1980) until about 1996. I don't know who
has the Hudson facility now. Maybe Intel?
... The times have been,
That, when the brains were out,
the man would die. ... Macbeth
Chuck Simmons email@example.com