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IBM 360-67 at CIT

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This page continues the documentation of the computers at Carnegie-Mellon University  in the 1960's. You can click on the links above to learn about some of the other computers.

Hi All,

These are to my knowledge the only photos I ever took of the 1108 and 360.  When they were moved to Wean, summer 1971, they were placed with the consoles right next to each other.  The three photos in this email are kind of a pan, from left to right(although the photographer, me, did move a bit between photos).  The first one shows the 1108 tape drives, the second one the 1108 and its console and the third one the 360 (with the DAT unit open) although you can still see the 1108 console in the leftof this photo.  I have no idea who were the two young men operating the machines.  Both at the time I made the photographs were attending the 360 and although you can see tapes mounted on the 1108, it did not appear to be doing anything while I was there.

I hope you've all enjoyed this little trip down memory lane (is that core memory ;-)

While searching for these slides, I came across another surprise.  For some forgotten reason, I had acquired a single roll of Anscochrome film and exposed it likely in spring 1969, but I could be off a year either way.  I know its spring because the shots at the end of the roll are of the midway at spring carnival and some buggy race shots as well.  Why, as my father worked for Eastman Kodak (and I worked there summers at that time as well) and I was religious about using Kodak film, I don't know.  Further, I didn't get the roll processed until 1975.  This I do remember as I recall finding it and almost throwing it out but having completely forgotten what was on it finally deciding to get it processed.  Once again it was forgotten until I just went slide mining.  This is the first time I've ventured to look at these slides in over 20 years.  Nothing really interesting in this one roll except the early construction (actually more destruction, lots of holes being dug in the ground) of Wean Hall. That's why I'm assuming it was spring 1969 as I believe the project was underway by that time, but again I could be a year off either way.  Do any of you have better information about the timing of the construction of Wean?  Anyway, I have not yet scanned any of these slides.  Are any of you interested in seeing a few of them? 

My next scanning project is likely to be of some of those Tri-X negatives I took in 66 and 67.  I believe I know where they are. I haven't looked at those since I rescued (most of) them from a flood in the early 70's.  I don't know how much if any of them will be of interest to you all.  We shall see...

73,
Chris Hausler

The 1108 tape drives

The 1108 and its console

The 360 (with the DAT unit open) although you can still see the 1108 console in the left of this photo


 In Aug of 2013, Pat Stakem found some documents from the CMU Comp Center and sent them to me for this web page:

1968 System Error Processing System - Morris Goldstein  -  Periodically, system errors arise at the Center and currently there is no iron-clad procedure to follow in processing them. The following system is proposed to satisfy the following needs......

1968 Systems Verification Group - Melvin Boksenbaum  -  The Systems Verification Group is a major step in the stabilization of those untilities (systems) with which the Computation Center serves its user community. Beginning.....

1968 Systems Verification Procedure - Melvin Boksenbaum  -  There are four general forms of testing used to verify that systems and documentation are adequate. A comparison between ......

CMU Systems Verification 360   -  Notes are release 17 of O.S. - Differences of Note to the User from Release 15/16


IBM Datacells, real CIT/CMU Datacells




Date:    Wed, 30 Oct 2013 19:01:20 -0400 (GMT-04:00)
From:    "J. Chris Hausler" <jchauslerearthlink.net>
Subject:    Something for the 360 page...

Hi Mark (and Pat),

I've been meaning to take this picture for some time and finally got around to it. The attached photo shows two IBM Datacells, real CIT/CMU Datacells. These were found in a trash bin with a number of old printed circuit cards, bits of cable and other debris including floor sweepings during that 1976 Homecoming visit by Pat, Russ and I. As I recall Pat recognized some of the circuit cards in that same trash bin as being off of that Image Dissector unit he had worked on I believe around the 1970 time frame (Pat?). The bin was in the then big empty area under the plaza in front of Hamerschlag Hall created when Wean was built and running between Wean and Porter Halls. The building of this area cut the steam tunnels such that one could no longer reach Hamerschlag Hall through them anymore. That area I believe now supports two floors of offices.

Anyway, the photo shows the two cells, one in its carrier and one out with the carrier adjacent to it. I have partially pulled up one of the magnetic strips out of the open unit. My original thought was that I would remove one of the strips and photograph it next to one of the RACE cards but have since had second thoughts as likely I would have the same problem the Datacell drive did. I wouldn't be able to get the strip back in the cell without crumpling it :-)

Some Datacell statistics:

Each cell held 20 (0-19) strip groups with each group having 10 strips for 200 strips per cell.
Each strip had 100 addressable tracks and held 200K bytes per strip.
A strip was read by a 20 track moveable head with 5 positions.
Thus each cell held 40M bytes and with ten cells per drive 400M bytes per drive.
Up to 8 drives could be accommodated per controller for 3.2G bytes total storage.
Each strip appears to be 2.25 inches wide.
Historic data also records twice this storage for digits (likely two per byte) and it refers to "alphanumeric characters" instead of bytes.

73, Chris Hausler
Date sent:    Sun, 3 Apr 2016 16:11:41 -0400 (GMT-04:00)
From:    "J. Chris Hausler" <jchauslerearthlink.net>
Subject:    Data Cell Document


Hi Mark,
 
I was just communicating with one of my telegraph friends (by telegraph in fact) who was familiar with IBM stuff and the subject of the Data Cell came up.  In looking around I found the transcript of an interview conducted in December 2004 with several of the folks involved in the design and development of the Data Cell.  It might make a nice addition to the 360 page where the photo of my Data Cells are:

http://archive.computerhistory.org/resources/access/text/2013/05/102657934-05-01-acc.pdf
 
I've read about two thirds of it so far but dinner time approaches...
 
73, Chris Hausler



emails


From:    "Stan  King" <skingp390.com>
Subject:    CIT - 1966
Date:    Mon, 25 Jul 2011 15:52:33 +0000

Good Morning Mark:

I came upon your web site after Googling the IBM 360-67 looking for photos of the front panel.  I was quite amazed when I came across the photos from Hammerschlag Hall and the old data center.  Wow did it bring back memories.

In 1965 I was an 8th grader at St. Bede's grade school in Point Breeze. At some point late in the semester some graduate students and a doctoral candidate from CIT came over to the school to pitch an idea to the science teacher.  They were conducting some research to see if children could easily adapt to using computers. The objective was to see if us young science types could comprehend the complexities of entry level computer programming. They selected a couple of us willing volunteers and for the next six weeks we spent every weekend at CIT deep in the bowels of Hammerschlag.  Our first computer system was the venerable Bendix G-15 and all of the wonderful paper tape. My how simple everything was back in those days.  It was a whirlwind of exciting technology and provided me with the incentive to continue my future into the world of computer science.

I have always wanted to thank those fine students for the direction and motivation into what has become a phenomenal personal success story, as they deserve all the credit for showing me the way.  Some of the names escape me with the exception of one. I believe he was the doctoral candidate and the leader of the study. I believe his last name was Hitt.  Although my memory could have faded over the years.  Do you recall anyone by that name or perhaps any recollection for these studies?

I owe everything to that beginning introduction into computer science.  CIT and later CMU would become the central focal point for all of my career advancement. It was and still is one of the finest citadels of education in the world.

Thank you.

Stan H. King
CEO
Information Technology Company, LLC
Falls Church, VA
Stan,

I've forwarded your email to our informal group of ex-CIT computer nerds.

I don't recall anyone named Hitt but I was a lowly undergrad not particularly inclined to interact with grad students.

CIT was good at giving kids a chance. I was in a program there between my Junior and Senior years in high school. As with you, it was intrumental in getting me into computers (I grew up in a steel mill town and who knew a computer from hole in the wall?).

May I use your email on my web page. Maybe someone else may see it who knows more about the program you were in.

Mark
Absolutely.  Feel free.  I have a strong affection for CIT in all regards, obviously.

After grade school I was at Central Catholic High and in our senior year (1969-1970) we were offered, for the first time in Pittsburgh, an elective course for computer science.  Our science teacher taught the course but all computer usage was at CMU using the IBM 360 and the Univac 1108.  Gosh how I loved watching those Fastrand drum storage units spin.  I learned so much from CIT/CMU that it is hard for me to believe that the current state of education could match the experiences of those halcyon days of my youth.

Share away McDuff!

SHK


Date sent:    Thu, 31 Mar 2016 13:33:51 -0400 (EDT)
From:    "J. Chris Hausler" <jchauslerearthlink.net>
Subject:    Dr. Hitt???


Hi Mark,
 
Recently for various reasons I was rereading the 360 page and the email from Stan King.  He mentioned the leader of the mid 60's study he was in was "Hitt".  I went prowling in my 2011 Alumni directory and found the following entry:  Dr. Joe Stephen Hitt, CIT 1962.  This sort of implies that he might have already had his PhD by the mid 60's time frame Stan mentions but maybe the 1962 date was just his bachelors degree date, I don't know.  Sadly it also mentions that he is deceased.  He is only listed in the alphabetical listings not in the class listings but they appear to remove entries from the class listings once someone dies and never put them in if they don't hear from the alumnus in the first place (You and Pat are only in the alphabetical listings.  Obviously they've never heard from either of you.).  Interestingly, the only other alumni directory I have is from 1987 and he is not listed at all in that directory.  However, the alumni association at the school seems to be confused most of the time.  They are not on my list of "favorite things", far from it.  I've had battles with them going back to the late 90's for their lack of sense and lack of attention to details.  It is possible they only learned (remembered) about him at his death as that does happen.
 
73, Chris Hausler
Chris,

This is an extensive family tree for Stephen Hitt on Ancestry.com.

On Findagrave :  http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=88089145     1934-1974

I also found this 1965 Faculty Bulletin which lists Hitt on the faculty:

Joe Stephen Hitt, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Bioengineering, BS 1962 MS 1962 PhD 1964, Carnegie Institute of Technology.

http://digitalcollections.library.cmu.edu/awweb/awarchive?type=file&item=386389

Mark



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