Post by Peter Flass Post by Scott Lurndal
I'm trying to learn more about this machine which was originally made by El=
ectrodata, and sold in the late 1950s and 1960s. It was a desk size machi=
ne that was programmed by inserting metal pins about the size of a wooden m=
atch into holes in boards about 4 by 15 inches. I believe it was targeted=
at the bookkeeping and accounting market, but I know it had some scientifi=
c users as well. I've been unable to find any documentation on it beyond =
a very simple representation of its data flow.
If anyone seeing this has any experience with this machine, I would be grat=
to hear from you. Thanks.
I have, in a box in storage, "Electrodata 101 Handbook (Advanced Programming)",
"You can program the electrodata E101" and "Introduction to E101". It's
been my intent to give those to Al Kossow for bitsavers.org.
These are the master copies from the Burroughs (Electrodata) Pasadena
plant copy center. The Pasadena plant was where the E101 (and the
datatron 220, and the 100/200/300 series that led to the B3500 were
designed and built. The B5000 was also designed and built in Pasadena.
Must have been an interesting place to work.
A lot of history in that building; Building A was built circa 1956 for
Electrodata, a few years later it was extended by buildings b, c, d and
e (under a single roof). Ground floor was executive offices, MIS (a
B6900 in the 80's), qa, and the manufacturing floor. Basement was
programming and engineering, drafting, records/reproduction and the
cafeteria. The building was on a slope, so the basement was open
on the east and south-east sides of the building. A sub-basement had
receiving, machine/carpentry shop and IC test (later, a B7900 which
was used to simulate the next generation medium systems processor).
With the B5500/B6500, engineering/programming for large systems moved to
Mission Viejo in SoCal and Tredyffrin in Pa, the medium systems line (B3x00, B4x00, V-series)
stayed in Pasadena and small systems (B1700 et al) moved to Santa
Medium systems Manufacturing moved to Mission Viejo in the late 80's, and
the Pasadena plant was remodeled; a light well was constructed around the north
side of the building so windows could be added to the basement, the ramp
to the sub-basement was filled in and a lobby was added at the east end;
the manufacturing floor was remodeled into a maze of individual hardwall
offices and everyone moved up from the basement; which was then gutted and
remodeled. It was during that period that we discarded a bunch of 7-track
tapes with the original CP (control program), BCP (Basic Control Program)
and MCP (Master Control program) sources, and likely what was left from
the Electrodata 101/220, Burroughs 100/200/300 and early B5000 development.
Wish we'd thought to preserve it for the future Computer History Museum,
or even so I had early software for my medium systems simulator :-)
The plant was closed in 1992, after moving everyone to Mission Viejo
(or in some cases Tredyffrin); we had a nice party.
JPL moved in after Unisys moved out; last I heard, the basement had
been turned into a Fitness center.
460 Sierra Madre Blvd.
South of it (now a stripmall), was Kodak's data division. There was
a gas station on the corner of N Halstead and N Rosemead (now
a Carl's Jr. fast food joint) that was used
in the filming of Steve Martin's _The Jerk_; we used to watch the filming
at lunch time.
The lightwell that was added on the north side is visible in the satellite view.
The rose parade ended a half mile from the plant at PHS (Eddie Van Halen's alma matter;
Eddie's dad was a janitor at the pasadena plant).