Computers & Business Machines
Imagine the loss, 100 years from now, if museums hadn't begun preserving the artifacts of the computer age. The last few decades offer proof positive of why museums must collect continuously—to document technological and social transformations already underway.
The museum's collections contain mainframes, minicomputers, microcomputers, and handheld devices. Computers range from the pioneering ENIAC to microcomputers like the Altair and the Apple I. A Cray2 supercomputer is part of the collections, along with one of the towers of IBM's Deep Blue, the computer that defeated reigning champion Garry Kasparov in a chess match in 1997. Computer components and peripherals, games, software, manuals, and other documents are part of the collections. Some of the instruments of business include adding machines, calculators, typewriters, dictating machines, fax machines, cash registers, and photocopiers
- Introduced in March of 1983, the CompuPro S-100 system was one of the last and most expensive CP/M systems that appeared. It was a very flexible system that could accommodate a wide range of S-100 bus cards built by a wide range of manufacturers.
- Compupro itself manufactured a large number of S-100 cards. Its S-100 system could be fitted with either 8-bit and/or 16-bit processor cards. One of the best-selling cards was a dual processor 8808 + 8085. This allowed running both 8 bit CP/M and 16 bit MP/M software at a speed of 2 or 5 MHz in a multitasking environment.
- The CompuPro S-100 included several cards from 8088 + 8085 to Z80 to 80286 at a speed of 4 MHz and up. There are 2 8" floppy disk drives. The three major options for operating systems were CP/M, CP/M-86, and MP/M. The machine had 16 KB of RAM, which could be expanded to 1 MB. Depending on how the computer was configured, its price ranged from around $5,500 up to almost $20,000.
- Currently not on view
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- National Museum of American History