"FIRST"??!? (Was: word processor history -- interesting article

Guy Sotomayor Jr ggs at shiresoft.com
Wed Jul 6 18:35:09 CDT 2016

In high school, I wrote a paper using punched cards and a simple Fortan
program that I wrote on an IBM 1130 to format them and print it out on 
a 1403 printer (that was 1974).

In college I used “Scribe” a markup language and formatter that ran on
TOPS-10 that could send output to an XGP (Xerox Graphics Printer…early
laser printer that was driven from a PDP-11/45).  That was 1975+.

At IBM we used Script (again a markup language).  That was 1979.

So, it all depends upon what was meant by “Word Processor” but I agree
with most of what has been said in this thread so far.  The author is
ignoring anything earlier than what appeared on micros such as the
Apple II or TRS-80.

TTFN - Guy

> On Jul 6, 2016, at 3:57 PM, Fred Cisin <cisin at xenosoft.com> wrote:
> On Wed, 6 Jul 2016, Chuck Guzis wrote:
>> I remember punching my documents on an 026 then running a FORTRAN
>> formatter.  Of course, there were many escape codes conventions in the
>> formatter for stuff like boldface, underlining, tables, word-wrap
>> suppression, "widow" control, etc.
>> I wasn't unique in this--indeed the whole practice predates integrated
>> circuits, I suspect.
>> Perhaps the author counts only WYSIWYG-type wapros and that things like
>> the MT/ST don't count either.
> Actually, he does give an MT/ST example (Len Deighton).  But, it was one where the author composed on a typewriter, and then his secretary re-typed and edited on an MT/ST.
> Just the pronunciation of "MT/ST" made me want to write a word-processor, just to be able to call it "FULL ST".
> The whole thing desperately needs to be changed from "earliest" to "early", and get rid of the entire "FIRST" nonsense.
> The idea of "which authors used word processors 35 years ago" isn't too bad, but the idea of a "FIRST" is ludicrous.
> Yes, the author seems to be young enough to think of "word-processing" as starting with TRS80/Apple][.
> Nowadays, the kids think that word processing can not be done without on-screen font display.

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