clemc at ccc.com
Sat Jun 16 23:11:17 AEST 2018
And I believe at the time, KO was commenting in terms of Bell’s ‘minimal computer’ definition (the ‘mini’ - aka 12 bit systems) of the day -DEC’s PDP-8 not the 10. IIRC The 8 pretty much had a base price in the $30k range in the mid to late 60s. FWIW the original 8 was discrete bipolar (matched) transistors built with DEC flip chips. And physically about 2or3 19” relay racks in size. Later models used TTL and got down to a single 3U ‘drawer.’
Also please remember that originally, mini did not mean small. That was a computer press redo when the single chip, ‘micro’ computers, came to being in the mid 1970s
Sent from my PDP-7 Running UNIX V0 expect things to be almost but not quite.
On Jun 16, 2018, at 8:51 AM, Noel Chiappa <jnc at mercury.lcs.mit.edu> wrote:
>> From: Dave Horsfall <dave at horsfall.org>
>>> one of the Watson's saying there was a probably market for
>>> <single-digit> of computers; Ken Olsen saying people wouldn't want
>>> computers in their homes; etc, etc.
>> I seem to recall reading somewhere that these were urban myths... Does
>> anyone have actual references in their contexts?
> Well, for the Watson one, there is some controversy:
> My guess is that he might actually have said it, and it was passed down orally
> for a while before it was first written down. The thing is that he is alleged
> to have said it in 1943, and there probably _was_ a market for only 5 of the
> kind of computing devices available at that point (e.g. the Mark I).
>> E.g. Watson was talking about the multi-megabuck 704/709/7094 etc
> No. The 7094 is circa 1960, almost 20 years later.
>> Olsens's quote was about the DEC-System 10...
> Again, no. He did say it, but it was not about PDP-10s:
> "Olsen later explained that he was referring to smart homes rather than
> personal computers." Which sounds plausible (in the sense of 'what he meant',
> not 'it was correct'), given where he said it (a World Future Society
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