Browse Prior Art Database

Apparatus for Space and Device Management of Data Stored in Bubble Lattice Files

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000086772D
Original Publication Date: 1976-Oct-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Mar-03
Document File: 5 page(s) / 98K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Related People

Kinberg, C: AUTHOR

Abstract

An apparatus is described for space and device management of stored data comprising a plurality of storage devices called "chips" holding bubble lattice files (BLEs) and a common control arrangement.

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Apparatus for Space and Device Management of Data Stored in Bubble Lattice Files

An apparatus is described for space and device management of stored data comprising a plurality of storage devices called "chips" holding bubble lattice files (BLEs) and a common control arrangement.

Each storage chip holds an array of bubbles and a predetermined number of pairs of input/output ports to the array. The parts accommodate the stepping or streaming of information carrying bubbles onto and off the array.

A plurality of chips are grouped and controlled in parallel to permit such functions as column selection, stepping, reading and writing of bubbles to be performed in common. Such a group of chips is called a "plane."

A limited number of "planes" are combined to form "modules" in order to share higher level control functions. Thus, each "module" contains a mechanism for performing column selection in any one plane of the module. Another mechanism controls the generation of coded bubbles at the input ports and the reading, stepping and annihilation of bubbles at the output ports while stepping the bubbles of selected column groups. The reentered bubbles may carry the information just read at the output port. They may carry zero information or new information transmitted from another plane or from the device bus. Similarly, the information read at the output port can also be entered at the input port of another plane or coded as signals on the device bus for transmission, to other media, e.g., main memory. An auxiliary plane with its own mechanism for stepping, reading and writing bubbles is provided in each module capable of interacting with any plane in the module to perform specified data management functions.

Fig. 1 shows the smallest significant element of the storage device. It is a matrix with the dimensions of 2048 rows and 2048 columns. Each element in the matrix is a magnetic bubble capable of being set into more than one state, thus being able to represent information 0.1 ... etc. This apparatus is limited to structures in which only two states are distinguished. On each chip there are placed four read/write (R/W) lines or pairs of ports. The entire matrix can be moved left and right relative to the R/W lines, and these lines have been evenly spaced apart in such a way that with a limited number of shifts every column of the matrix can be aligned to coincide with a R/W line. The R/W lines provide the means for storing data in the matrix or reading data stored in the matrix.

The accessing of data in the matrix requires three steps. First, the set of columns must be selected in which the data is to be written or the record is to be found. This is accomplished by shifting the matrix (let us call it an x shift or seek function) until the selected columns are lined up with the R/W lines (or ports on the chip). Next, the contents of the selected set of columns must be "rotated" (streamed out of the read station and reentered into the mat...