CDC 6600 - Why so awesome?

Chuck Guzis cclist at
Wed Jun 22 19:13:03 CDT 2016

On 06/22/2016 04:46 PM, Rich Alderson wrote:

> And it's rarely an armload.  Most programs fit into a deck of a few dozen
> cards or so.  If you can't wrap a rubber band around the deck, you kept it
> in the box.  (Oh, yeah, you bought cards in boxes of 2000.  About 16" long,
> IIRC.)

Well, if you were a serious programmer, major segments of code came in
the drawer of a card filing cabinet (I don't recall exactly, but I
believe one held about two boxes.)  However, then the idea was to get
them onto tape before something dreadful happened, such as being
subjected to a jam or being rejected because of a compare error in the

I can recall on more than one occasion where an I/O clerk with a cart
loaded down with card trays hit a loose trim strip in a raised floor.
Mayhem indeed.  If you were smart, you drew a long diagonal across the
top of the card deck with a felt-tip pen to at least give you some sort
of clue about the order.

There were SCCS type of systems even back then.   SCOPE had UPDATE,
which corresponded to KRONOS MODIFY.  Each card was assigned a set
identifier and sequence number, used as reference when editing.  Updates
could be YANKed or PURGEd as necessary.


More information about the cctech mailing list