By David E. Lundstrom
During this own memoir, electric engineer David Lundstrom remembers the heyday of early computing, the increase of regulate info out of the Univac department of Sperry Rand, such milestone desktops because the Univac and the Naval Tactical facts method the exploits of CDC's best dressmaker Seymour Cray, and the slow company shift from the fascinating and technically attention-grabbing international of machine layout to inner politics and clumsy forms. - writer. Read more...
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Extra resources for A few good men from Univac
Althoug h the overa ll design philo sophy influen ces every des ign decisi on, most engineers are incapable of verb alizing their inne r thoughts on thi s philosophi cal level. Th e failed design approach es are never written down because no one likes to publicize his failures, and it is easy to rat ionalize that the failed approache s are not a part of the completed design. " The group receiving th e complet ed design, th en, has to ferret out the missing 5 to 10 percent of the design for themselves, despite their not knowing the overall design ph ilosophy tha t guided, perhaps subconsciously, every de cision of the original designers Any change that the receivers make with an eye to reducing costs or improving performance runs the risk of repeating one of the unsuccessfu l (and undocumented) expe riments of the origin al develop ers.
This can occu r in th e following manner. A wire is specified to connect from pin 6 of one chassis to pin 73 of ano the r chassis. The assembler by mistake con nec ts the wire to pin 71 instead of to pin 73. Soon afte rward, before the or iginal error is found, an ECO (e ngineering change order) comes through to delete this wire. The assembler. working from a tabulated list of chan ges, looks at pin 73, sees no wire th ere. and assumes that the wire has already been removed She goes on to the next change on her list, leaving in the machin e a wire that now appears nowhere in the documentation.
However, all the plug-in chassis containing the vacuum tube circuitry and without a full complement of Uniservos, These five machines had already been sold, so a sign was hung above each one with the name of the customer. On Tech nology and Geography 25 In the ea rly da ys of comp uters, each comp any bu ying one wanted to be sure that the ge ner al pub lic, and especi ally th eir shareholders, knew about the new acquisition. After all computers we re extremely expensive and the newest thing in techn ology.