Old guys reminiscing about their hardware 😆

(Janet ) #41

XI “won” a programmer trainee job at Cutter Labs around 1968. Loved programming. Learned Fortran but used COBOL for many years. The company mainframe was upgraded about the time I started to an IBM 360 mainframe with 64k with two partitions, We programmers had to keep our programs to around 20k, because we got the smaller partition. That was hard and we had a lot of tricks up our sleeves plus assembly language subroutines helped. The disk drives were HUGE. I still remember how to thread tape into those tall tape drives.
Years later at HP when we graduated from working on the main frames to personal computers at our desks, those first PCs more just like terminals with floppy disks for hard drives.
My first personal computer in 1989 was made by HP where I worked by that time. I remember paying $500 extra for a second 1 mb of memory!


Ha, at link time one had to specify whether the program was to run in the upper or lower partition as there was no relocatable loader or DAT logic (dynamic address translation).

BTW - A belated welcome to the forum.

Oh yeah, one other thing. COBOL isn’t programming.:laughing:

(Reader of the Internets) #43

Hey! My first language. Got me hooked…

(Janet ) #44

Loved COBOL !!


@Bill_Janssen, @Echolane -

Fun fact. As it turns out, at it’s base, COBOL is just a standardized collection of Assembler macros. That’s why when one asks for, what is it, a DLIST of the compile, the compiler spits out an Assembler listing. The compiler is just showing an expanded list of the macros it used.

E,g, PERFORM is just an Assembler macro with defined operands.

Just saying…


(Martin Webster) #46

Gosh, you guys are really old! :laughing:

I cut my teeth on PASCAL!

(Dick Vliek) #47

Ah know that, wasn’t that used in Delphi?

(Martin Webster) #48

Yes, that’s the one. Bit too modern for me though.

(Janet ) #49

Fun fact indeed.

If memory serves, Perform cost 30 bytes (or was it 60 bytes) vs Alter go to which used only 6 bytes. So early on when space was scarce, we saved space chewing bytes by using Alter go to instead of Perform.

(Janet ) #50

You got that right !! Old is good :blush:

(Tony Reimann) #51

Nobody has mentioned PL/1 yet. Was pretty popular for application programming in the 80s and 90s.


I’ve got another. RPGII, where one filled out a bunch of forms to generate code.

Really, really not programming.

(Tony Reimann) #53

And its upgrades rpg iii and rpg iv. Got to agree, not real programming and mainly for the system 38 from memory.

(Mr Fix It ) #54

Im old ye…but I cut my teeth on IBM big iron and small iron in the late 70’s but I’m a hardware guy…the wobbly ball typewriter console was the bane of my IBM CE days …

was always fun to pull the card stop out of the reader on April 1st and watch the cards spew into the air tho … hehehehehe

some old footage…no flying cards unfortunately…how times have changed

(Reader of the Internets) #55

As Mark Zuckerberg once said, “Older people are just smarter.” Least, I think that’s what he said… memory may not be all that it was :smile:.

(Tony Reimann) #56

Ah the good old 1052. I am the only person I know to pull the emergency pull button on an ibm mainframe. A 360/50 caught fire so I did what I always wanted to do :grin:

(Andrew Cox) #57

About 1986, I got my first computer, an Amiga. I even paid for the 20MB clip on hard disk. I learned C (no, not C++, the original K&R) and used to read Amiga magazines (Run Your Own TV Station On Your Amiga !).

Now my girlfriend’s son pays out on me for not having retained such historically valuable cultural artifacts.

(Mr Fix It ) #58

I had the same Amiga 1000 but made my own brand 880K floppy (with D23 cables…they were hard to find :blush:) drives and sold them to fund this —> had a friend who made a 2MB RAM/SCSI bus attached interface with 2 x 75MB full height Micropolis ST506 drives with SCSI conversion controller in-between. That was mega tech in the late 80’s. He was a design engineer for Fairlight :slight_smile:

Oh the good old days. Had the usual VIC20 and C64 and C128 and a PET 4032 as well all using tape deck storage!!! before the Amiga. Even had the SX64 laughable luggable before going 68000/Amiga CPU’s … did try assembly language too but still blur like sotong on programming

I learned the old K&G C programming too but never could get my head around it and stuck to hardware.

(Ron Seda) #59

I too remember upgrading memory by installing the bank of ram chips that came in an antistatic tube. I went to Tech school back in the late 70’s and learned about PC’s buy building bread boards and programing a Z80 chip. I remember how excited I was to get my first IBM PC-AT. Those floppy drives and adding a hard disk was such an achiement. For me nowadays I have developed enogh skills to build my own custom watercooled PC’s. Still a joy!


Talking about Amiga, I lost my cherry with an Atari 5200. You could program those things.