> From: Kyle Owen
> I've got a couple M1705 dual 12-bit output cards for the Omnibus. Does
> anyone have schematics or programming information available? I checked
> bitsavers, but I didn't see anything in the obvious places
They're in the DEC Logic Handbook; in the 1976-77 edition, they are on pp.
227-231. If you can't find it online, Topline has one for sale cheap:
If you really need it right away, I suppose I could crunch the book into my
scanner and scan those pages.
Chuck Guzis wrote:
"It didn't start with the 170, did it Billy? I remember a nice thick mat
of twisted-pair wires on the backplanes of 6000s, as well as in a lot of
attached controllers. Taper pin technology."
You're right - the 170 was the first use of main frame wire wrap at CDC. I've never seen any other machine that used twisted pair wire wrap. When I left the project, they were trying to defelop a machine to automate the wiring. It was not going well.
The earlier 6000, 7000 machines used twited pair with taper pins. Their wire mats were huge, more than 10 inches thick in some places. That was one of the problems they were trying to solve.
> From: Jacob Ritorto
> I just got my Diablo 630 running and would like to couple it to one of
> my pdp11s and an appropriate terminal to do more "inspired" writing and
> correspondence. .. I sometimes get bored typing on these relatively
> snazzy computers we have these days and wish to go back to the way
> things were.
Ah, got it. I don't know if (on the Unix path) nroff is any good for you; with
a good macro package (pretty much essential; raw roff/troff is kind of like
raw TEX), it's pretty easy to use.
The thing is that 'back in the day', the whole 'WYSIWYG' editing model didn't
exist until Bravo on the Alto. (At least, not that I know of - if anyone does
know of such, I would love to hear of it.) Except for plain ASCII files, of
course... So I'm not sure that if you're looking for 'text mode WYSIWYG',
you'll be able to find much.
> From: Warner Losh
> There was also a TECO version available for the PDP-11's running RSTS/E
> (and likely others)
There was a 'visual TECO' running on the V6 Unix at MIT; that's what we used
before the EMACS came along. I don't know the background of it, if it shares
any history with the one you mentioned.
>From the (slim) manual I have for it, it seems to have had both TECO mode
(the usual TECO command interface, the stuff that looks like line noise), and
a visual mode, just like primitive EMACS. (Probably only supported VT52's,
though.) The latter mode had some built-in command keys, and there were also
macro packages to extend it (again, just like primitive EMACS, although those
for the PDP-11 Unix TECO were not as sophisticated).
That's all almost certainly on the tape too, if anyone cares! :-)
I've got a couple M1705 dual 12-bit output cards for the Omnibus. Does
anyone have schematics or programming information available? I checked
bitsavers, but I didn't see anything in the obvious places, and without an
option number (like DR8-E for the dual 12-bit I/O card, M863), it makes
searching a bit more difficult. I'm hoping to have this controlling my
Christmas tree lights this year if I can get something working. It has
quite a number of jumpers, and although I can deduce a few must be
addressing, I don't know what the others might be for.
Any help would be appreciated!
I've just scanned the 1000-odd page software source book for VAX/VMS, 6th
Edition from October 1990, available from my scans page:
This is a mammoth book (beware the 643MB download size!) but is a fantastic
example of just how pervasive VAX and VMS were. It contains a comprehensive
listing of software available for the platform both from DEC and
independent software houses. Interesting personally is the indication of
programming language used.
I've also uploaded Programming in VAX Fortran (Sept 84): I wasn't aware of
an online copy of this manual. It's a very handy guide to programming in
Fortran that covers everything you'd need to get up and running with the
language under VAX/VMS, including the use of EDIT, compiling, linking and
debugging, as well as reference material on the language and supporting
> I know this was discussed before but....
> What are recommended methods for storing a variety of ICs where they
> are easily accessible as needed, keeps them safe and for the long term?
Tubes are good if you can find them in any quantity now though they aren't
so handy if like most folk you have a largish mix with only small numbers of
each. I have a cabinet with antistatic plastic drawers for my MOS ICs and
some of the bipolar with the rest of the bipolar in an ordinary styrene
drawer cabinet. In my earlier days in the MOS industry before more
specialised antistatic stuff became available we used to push them into a
sheet of polystyrene wrapped with foil.
> From: Mattis Lind
> I checked all three M7270 modules I have here. ... I have, Rev. E, Rev.
> H and Rev. K
> ... All has date codes in the range 77-80. I expect your boards to be
> later revisions.
No (I think); mine are both K, too. One says "130 K" (that's the one with the
slightly earlier chips); the other says "140 K". Anyone know what the numbers
> Eric Smith spacewar at gmail.com
> Perhaps I'm mistaken, but I was pretty sure that the first UTek machine
> was the 4404 "Artificial Intelligence Workstation", introduced in 1974.
> The 4404 was MC68010 based
There's also the TI Explorer:
a LISP machine (custom CPU); not sure of the exact date, but it was around then.
> From: William Donzelli
> Building a complete ENIAC replica would indeed be hard. If only exact
> proper NOS parts were used, I might just say impossible.
One other component I didn't see listed: rotary switches. ENIAC used tons of
them, originally for inputting static data (think ROM :-), and later to hold
tables used when they converted it to a sorta-stored-program machine (think
And what about the special plug wires (and the male and female connectors used
thereon) which were used to 'program' the machine for a given problem - are
those still available?
>> Jacob Ritorto wrote:
>> Yeah, but troff is too hard.
I'm going to pass over the obvious question ('why would anybody be doing word
processing on a PDP-11 in this day and age' :-), and ask if nroff is also too
hard? Since it's only intended for character devices (line printers, etc)
it's not quite as complex as troff.a
I'm not sure if Bell had anything simpler; I'll have to look at my V6 Unix
> From: Ian S. King
> But ... Emacs (originally EMACS, "eight megabytes and continuously
> swapping") .. is ever going to run on a PDP-11.
If you restrict yourself to GNU Emacs, yes. But there are more implementations
of EMACS in the world than that bloated monstrosity!
We ran an EMACS on V6 Unix at MIT, I forget who wrote it, I think it was
someone at BBN; it was quite a nice one. It was quite customizable (but that
have only been key bindings and settings, not sure if it included code), and
it had all the usual features: multiple buffers and windows, etc. (In fact,
it was so painful to use on a VT52, with its small screen, that I migrated to
a Ann Arbor Ambassador terminal, with its much large screen, as soon as it
I have several sets of backup tapes from one of the V6 machines at MIT; I
sent one off to Chuck Guzis, and he's gotten almost all the bits off of it (a
few records had unrecoverable read errors, but the vast majority were OK -
like roughly 15 read errors in around 1500 records).
I hope to annouce a vast trove of stuff soon from my tapes (once I figure out
how to interpret the bits - they are written by a sui generis application
called 'saveRVD', and the _only_ documentation of how it did it is... on that
tape! :-) That includes a lot of code written at MIT, as well as stuff from
Coming soon, in addition to that EMACS, should be BCPL, Algol, LISP and some
other languages; MACRO-11 and the DEC linker (which I guess are also
available from UNSW tapes), but _also_ programs to convert back and forth
>from .REL to a.out format, and to .LDA format; and a whole ton of other
applications (I have no idea what all is there - if anyone is interested, I
can make a pass through my manuals and try and make a list).