Front Panels - Thoughts

tony duell ard at
Sat Oct 31 13:40:50 CDT 2015

> Hi Guys
>           Sitting here doing the overlays for the 8/e silk screen run.
> I had a thought. Including all makes of computer old and new.
> What about a front panel with lights and switches for systems
> that never had one and could have done with one?
> Which computer would you nominate?

The obvious ones for me would be those DEC machines that never had 
a real panel -- things like the 11/34 which has a keypad (toggle switches
and LEDs are much nicer!) and those with 'Console ODT' and a serial 
terminal. I would like a real pront panel on my 11/44 and VAX11/730 machines.

And the PERQ. At least front panel access to the microcode, and prefereably
to the main program memory as well.

> I'm not about to do anything about it.
> But the answers should be interesting

I don't blame you!. In most cases you can't just add a frontpanel on later, especially
if you want access to internal CPU registers, etc. To add a frontpanel you would probably
have to redesign bits of the CPU. Good luck in adding a panel to the PERQ main memory
which does not cause problems with RasterOps...


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