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On 05/25/2012 04:16 AM, Tom Davies wrote:
Hi :)
First time i went up to Manchester the university had just completed building a huge building 
that had been designed to fit the latest best machine of the day.  

Unfortunately by the time the building work was done a better machine was small enough to fit on 
one of the desks in one of the rooms.  I'm not quite sure if that says more about the speed of 
computer development or the slowness of English builders!  
Regards from
Tom :)  
Slowness of any government contractor, it is just as bad in the US

--- On Thu, 24/5/12, webmaster-Kracked_P_P <> wrote:

From: webmaster-Kracked_P_P <>
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-users] Re: LibreOffice is listed as an educational software for math
Date: Thursday, 24 May, 2012, 19:30

On 05/24/2012 12:14 PM, Joep L. Blom wrote:
On 24-05-12 16:06, Tony Sumner wrote:
On May 24, 2012, Jay Lozier wrote:

This trip down memory lane makes one feeil old. Anyone remember
teletypes with punched tape?
Of course. My favourite paper tape story. At AEE, Winfrith, we did
serious computing on the IBM704 at Risley in Lancashire. We would type
the program onto paper tape and run it though a teletype to send it by
phone to Risley. At their end they would punch it out and to check that
it was ok they would send it back. At the Winfrith end we then had the
original tape and a copy and we would hold these up to the light to
check for errors. If there were none we'd phone Risley and say yes ok
go ahead.  This was a communication protocol, yes? Later we installed a
punched card system so we could put the program on cards and fly them
to Risley by plane.


I assume you never worked with the folded papertape used with the DEC PDP-8! coded in ASCII. 
Years before we used an  Electrologica X-1 with papertape coded in EBSDIC!You could edit the 
tapes with a manual punch and nontransparent sellotape. We thought punched cards were 

DEC PDP 11 and similar was most of my main-frame and mini-main-frame work back in the 80's and 
early 90's.  I used  IBM main-frames in the late 70's bunch cards and dumb terminals in then in 
late 90's with terminals dumb and smart.  In the mid 70's I used a teletype style 
printer/terminal connected via phone to a computer 50+ miles way, for my first coding experience, 
then went to punch cards before I ever got to use a dumb terminal CRT display and text editor to 
type in and edit program code for COBOL, FORTRAN, BASIC, RPG-II/III, Assembly, and a few other 
languages.   Now people use PCs with "smart" color coded editors to help them code, edit, and 
debug their programs.

I wrote an RPG-III coding editor so it would be easier to line up the cryptic codes in their 
proper columns.  It was well received at that place that used RPG-II/III.  It took half the time 
to type in the programs in the dumb terminals.

I started my computer work experience when most computers I had "terminal" access to, or had to 
load tapes for, were bigger than all my apartment rooms combined, and then some.  I worked a 
terminal with one that used more floor space than a basketball court.  I remember when a college 
put up a Bulletin Board System [via phone modems] that had a brand new 10 MEG of drive space and 
the people could not think of why it needed so much space to store files.  10 MEG was too large 
to imagine using.  Those were the days when floppies were floppy.


Well we really went off thread topic with this one.

As I stated in the original post, it was interesting that LO was listed under free Math software.

Now it seems we are talking about the "grand old days" of computers before they could fit on a 

I still know many people who do not have the money to buy a computer or if they have one be able 
to get online with broadband.  In the '50 it was thought there was no need for more than 50 to 
100 computers in the whole USA.  Now there are millions of them in the USA, with people like me 
having several desktops/laptops running side by side when needed.  Then add their smart phones, 
tablet phones, and the wifi reader/tablet non-phones that people [and kids] thing are a 
requirement it their lives.  Well, this generation does not appreciate what their fathers and 
grandfathers had to deal with when they were working with computers in those early years when the 
smallest computer was the size of a stove or refrigerator.

Jay Lozier

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