On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 09:10:28PM +0100, Arthur Chance wrote:
> On 10/20/10 20:46, Bob Hall wrote:
> >On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 12:07:55PM -0500, Tim Daneliuk wrote:
> >>On 10/20/2010 11:55 AM, Gary Kline wrote:
> >>>On Wed, Oct 20, 2010 at 12:47:38AM -0700, per...@pluto.rain.com wrote:
> >>>>Matthias Apitz<g...@unixarea.de>  wrote:
> >>>>>El d?a Tuesday, October 19, 2010 a las 07:29:46PM -0700, Gary Kline 
> >>>>>escribi?:
> >>>>>>        PS:  I really _was_ current on hardware stuff.  Back in the VAX
> >>>>>>        780 days :-)
> >>>>>I booted my first UNIX V7 tape on a PDP-11 around 1982, I think.
> >>>>
> >>>>Gotcha beat :)  UNIX V6, PDP-11/34, RK05 disk cartridge, 1975.
> >>>>The whole runtime fit on one RK05.  The sources took a second one.
> >>>
> >>>   I remember the 11/34 fondly.  The whole EE department at Cory
> >>>   Hall was running one one; then when I interned at Livermore my
> >>>   job of porting the "Portable F77 Compiler" was done with vi and
> >>>   the source code that Stu Feldman wrote.  I love[d] those bloody
> >>>   old computers, :-)  Dunno why.   Maybe because they really
> >>>   *were* about computing.  Not streaming [[whatever]] or having
> >>>   php running.  (Blah^9^9^9)
> >>>
> >>>   :)
> >>
> >>Heck, when I started out, they didn't even have zeros and ones yet.
> >>We had to settle for "o"s and "l"s ...
> >
> >When I started out, we didn't have read/write heads for the hard disks.
> >We had to copy the data from the screen to the disk by hand using
> >magnetized sewing needles. In order to read the damn things we had to
> >pass a compass over the disk and see where the needle deflected.
> Enough Monty Python Yorkshiremen claims, already. :-)
> Getting back to reality, although I never did it (fortunately), a
> friend of mine who was about a decade older than me (I'm mid/late
> 50s) had the experience of programming microcode on a machine by
> inserting brass slugs for 0s and ferrite slugs for 1s on a pin
> board. Anyone got any idea what that was? He was (UK) military so
> maybe it wasn't a generally known box.

        This microcode programming sounds just vagely familiar; seems like
        mid/late-80's or early-90's. Am i right?  --Most uses for
        supercomputers are mil/spooks/<<>>; that's the only reason the
        idea might have floated past me.

        Anyway, enjoyed the laughs... .
 Gary Kline  kl...@thought.org  http://www.thought.org  Public Service Unix
    The 7.90a release of Jottings: http://jottings.thought.org/index.php
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