Early Microprocessors in Industrial Microcomputers

Chuck Guzis cclist at sydex.com
Wed Mar 9 20:43:24 CST 2016

On 03/09/2016 08:49 AM, Jon Elson wrote:

> The row of red LEDs at the bottom of the pic is the front panel of
> the 7300 CPU.  They had an industrial control bus that allowed you to
>  connect a wide variety of interface boards, like encoder counters,
> DACs, digital inputs and outputs, etc.  It used battery-backed DRAM,
> and was made around 1978.

Much of the old Mitsubishi CNC gear uses battery-backed RAM via a 
lead-acid storage battery "floated" on a supply.  A tape or diskette 
drive is used for loading it with parameters and software.  Once read, 
the floppy isn't used for regular operation.

We occasionally get a call from some guy who's just unloaded a hunk of 
iron from the truck and realized that he doesn't have any software to 
run it.  Mitsubishi is usually of little help, and only offers to make a 
heckuva deal on some new iron.

Another place that I've seen microprocessors hiding is in pipe organs. 
I think the Ruffatti instrument at St. Mary's in San Francisco had, at 
one time, a bunch of 8086 MPUs (memory is very fuzzy).  I recall talking 
to a fellow in town here who worked for John Brombaugh who was working 
on bringing the design of his organs into the 20th century.  Again, more 
than 20 years ago and I haven't kept in touch.


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