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
- This circular device was an aid to programming the UNIVAC solid state computer. It consists of a paper disc, with equal divisions running from 1 to 200 near the edge, and a clear plastic rotating disc. These are pivoted together at the center. The upper disc is marked in red with two perpendicular diameters. The lower disc is marked: MINIMUM LATENCY CALCULATOR FOR THE UNIVAC SOLID-STATE COMPUTER. The UNIVAC had a magnetic storage drum on which locations were specified numerically. The latency calculator allowed programmers to write code for the machine to make the most efficient possible use of the drum memory.
- The back of the instrument gives a list of instruction codes and corresponding execution times for words. It is marked: Remington Rand Univac. It is also marked: U1767 Rev. 1 PRINTED (/) IN (/) U.S.A. The rule was received in a paper bag.
- Reference: Sperry Rand Corporation, Simple Transition to Electronic Processing, UNIVAC Solid-State 80, (1960), 18–26.
- Currently not on view
- date made
- after 1950
- Remington Rand Univac
- ID Number
- accession number
- catalog number
- Data Source
- National Museum of American History