Computing with Mini Computers. Fred Gruenberger, David Babcock.

Computing with Mini Computers.

Melville Publishing Co, Los Angeles CA 1973; 288 pages, index.

Condition: Very good, dark blue hardcover, shelfwear at corners and edges. Prev. owner's name inked out on endpage. Binding is sound and secure, pages are clean and unmarked.

Keywords: vintage minicomputers, history of minicomputers, mini computers, Varian 620, computers in the 1970s, 1970s computers

Price: $8.00

Item Description

'Starting in 1967, a breed of computers now categorized as minis appeared. By 1972, there were several dozen manufacturers making such machines, and they had reached such a degree of uniformity that they can be described as follows --

1. Their Central Processing Units (CPUs) (sold) for between $3,000 and $20,000
2. Their word length (was) either 12 or 16 bits (most often 16)
3. Their main frames measured 19 x 11 x 21 inches (usually designed to be rack-mounted)
4. Their internal operating speeds (were) from 1 to 4 microseconds per full word addition
5. They had markedly similar instruction sets, particularly in their schemes for addressing large amounts of core storage, ranging from 2048 to 65,536 words, within the constraint of their short word length
6. Some of them offered microprogramming capability through the addition of electronically alterable read-only storage (from the first paragraph of the book)

Contents include -- Prologue; Approaching the Computer; The Sizes of Computers; Flowcharting; Binary Arithmetic; Getting Started; Barriers; Assemblers; Subroutine Packages; Floating-point Arithmetic; Interpreters; Fortran; More on Fortran; BASIC: Some Larger problems; Program Testing; The Computing Art; Glossary; Appendices -- About Minicomputers; answers to selected exercises; Machine operating directions; a high-precision package

The machine operating directions relate to the Varian 620, having an ASR 33 Teletype and a photoelectric paper tape reader, using the DAS 8A Assembler, etc.