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Introduction to SPREAD Report

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000129406D
Original Publication Date: 1983-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Oct-05
Document File: 3 page(s) / 20K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

BOB O. EVANS: AUTHOR [+2]

Abstract

In the period from 1952 through 1962, IBM produced seven families of systems -- the 1400, 1620, 7030, 7040, 7070, 7080, and 7090 groups. They were not compatible with one another, and both users and IBM staff perceived a number of problems.

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THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.

Copyright ©; 1983 by the American Federation of Information Processing Societies, Inc. Used with permission.

Introduction to SPREAD Report

BOB O. EVANS

(Image Omitted: © 1983 by the American Federation of Information Processing Societies, Inc. Permission to copy without fee all or part of this material is granted provided that the copies are not made or distributed for direct commercial advantage, the AFIPS copyright notice and the title of the publication and its date appear, and notice is given that the copying is by permission of the American Federation of Information Processing Societies, Inc. To copy otherwise, or to republish, requires specific permission. Author's Address: B. O. Evans, IBM Corporation, Old Orchard Road, Armonk, N. Y. 10504 Categories and Subject Descriptors: K.2 [History of Computing -- hardware, IBM System/360, .software, systems. General Terms: Management, Standardization. Additional Key Words and Phrases: Compatibility, SPREAD. © 1983 AFIPS 0

164-1239/83/0 10004-005$0 1.00/00)

In the period from 1952 through 1962, IBM produced seven families of systems -- the 1400, 1620, 7030, 7040, 7070, 7080, and 7090 groups. They were not compatible with one another, and both users and IBM staff perceived a number of problems.

1. With so many types of architectures, IBM was spending most of its development resources propagating the wide variety of central processing units (CPUs). Fewer resources could therefore be devoted to either peripherals or programming.

2. The differing architectures of the seven families made it impossible to develop optimized peripheral equipment. Usually the small volume of sales for any single system or family could not justify a disk or tape drive optimized to that particular architecture. Thus new peripheral devices were suboptimized across differing architectures, and "throughput potential" was not being realized.

3. When transistors became available, IBM tried to take full advantage of the new capability through standardization of circuits and centralization of circuit-design groups, but rapid invention and innovation in transistors made standardization difficult. By 1963 there were more than 2500 types of circuit cards, not only affecting the logistics of manufacture, test, inventory control, spare parts, and field-engineer training, but also limiting the engineering staff's ability to improve the designs.

4. In the early days of electronic computing, the programming supplied by manufacturers was minimal. Because programming was not then an established science and there were seven different families to deal with, programming problems and demands became burdensome to both the users and IBM. User migration from one architecture to another was usually difficult -- if possible at all.

5. Users were limited by separate scientific and business products. Scientific users increasingly needed the alphanumeric and peripheral powers o...