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A Little Fun

Goal of this page
- - have A Little Fun - most recent near the top, here

This history stuff can be interesting - for some -
- - but usually is nowhere near fun -

In Feb 2011, JP Moore e-mailed

How the internet got started
(No, it was not Al Gore)

How the Internet started :-} A revelation with an Incredibly Big Message (IBM):

Well, you might have thought that you knew how the Internet started, but here's the TRUE story ....

In ancient Israel, it came to pass that a trader by the name of Abraham Com did take unto himself a young wife by the name of Dot.

And Dot Com was a comely woman, broad of shoulder and long of leg. Indeed, she was often called Amazon Dot Com.

And she said unto Abraham, her husband, "Why dost thou travel so far from town to town with thy goods when thou canst trade without ever leaving thy tent?" And Abraham did look at her - as though she were several saddle bags short of a camel load - but simply said, "How, dear?"

And Dot replied, "I will place drums in all the towns and drums in between to send messages saying what you have for sale, and they will reply telling you who hath the best price. The sale can be made on the drums and delivery made by Uriah's Pony Stable (UPS)."

Abraham thought long and decided he would let Dot have her way with the drums. The drums rang out and were an immediate success. Abraham sold all the goods he had at the top price, without ever having to move from his tent.

To prevent neighboring countries from overhearing what the drums were saying, Dot devised a system that only she and the drummers knew. It was called Must Send Drum Over Sound (MSDOS), and she also developed a language to transmit ideas and pictures: Hebrew To The People (HTTP)

But this success did arouse envy.

A man named Maccabia did secrete himself inside Abraham's drum and began to siphon off some of Abraham's business. But he was soon discovered, arrested and prosecuted for insider trading.

And the young men did take to Dot Com's trading as doth the greedy horsefly take to camel dung. They were called Nomadic Ecclesiastical Rich Dominican Sybarites, or NERDS.

And lo, the land was so feverish with joy at the new riches and the deafening sound of drums that no one noticed that the real riches were going to that enterprising drum dealer, Brother William of Gates, who bought off every drum maker in the land. And he did insist on drums to be made that would work only with Brother Gates' drum heads and drumsticks.

Lo, Dot did say, "Oh, Abraham, what we have started is being taken over by others!" And as Abraham looked out over the Bay of Ezekiel, or eBay as it came to be known, he said, "We need a name that reflects what we are." And Dot replied, "Young Ambitious Hebrew Owner Operators." "YAHOO," said Abraham. And because it was Dot's idea, they named it YAHOO Dot Com.

Abraham's cousin, Joshua, being the young Gregarious Energetic Educated Kid (GEEK) that he was, soon started using Dot's drums to locate things around the countryside.

It soon became known as God's Own Official Guide to Locating Everything (GOOGLE)

And that is how it all began.

On March 1, 2010, a "Peter Onion" e-mailed
Maybe you would like to put a link to my Utube video of our Elliott 803 running its Algol 60 compiler ?


There is also a video of me running the tape copy programme:

The machine is located at the National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park in the UK.


Peter Onion

"And the rest of the story."

In the early dayze, way back when ...
Computers often did not have a "console typewriter". Way too expensive and bothersome. A typewriter would have had to be purchased or leased, and you would have to wire up a kludge and some solenoids to bang the keys.
Eventually you could buy a Flexowriter, and kludge up some interface, and do keyboard input and typed output, and also read/punch paper tape, at 10 characters/second.

The customary solution - especially for engineering prototypes, was to link in a paper tape reader and a paper tape punch for I/O.

Maybe a "typical" machine was the ISA based Cyclone.

"My" first computer, the LGP-30, did have a Flexowriter which could read/punch paper tape at 10 characters/second :-))

IBM is excluded from this discussion as they were card reader/punch oriented for their business applications.

AND - the very popular IBM 1401 did not have a "console typewriter" either. You could express error codes "in the lights" or bang something out on the ever present line printer. Lots of printing in business - not much computing, lots of serious printing.

The earliest machine that I know of that came with a console video monitor was the Control Data 6600, which had TWO big round displays to help the operator keep track of the 7 "control points" which displayed the status of the up to seven user jobs in the machine.

- Please let me know if you know of an earlier "standard" or "manditory" monitor for operator usage.
- I doubt that you could get a paper tape I/O for that machine -

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