Burroughs: IF (Dec, 1961)


• you’re weary of matching one assembler instruction per one machine language instruction.

• you’re spending half of your machine time translating compiler programs into machine language programs of questionable efficiency.

• you’re using up time and money with hunt-and-peck machine language debugging and reprogramming.

• you’re tired of seeking, teaching or even becoming a bilingual programmer—fluent in both problem and machine languages.

• you’re fed up with programming methods that are cumbersome, time-consuming and costly.

Then, you’ll be interested in Burroughs B 5000, a new kind of information processing system which is the result of a total departure from traditional computer design concepts. A system in which software dictates equipment designs and specifications to bridge the communication gap between man and machine.

As a problem oriented system, its software capabilities accept ALGOL and COBOL statements directly because its logic matches the logic of problem-language programming. Instead of an instruction-address-instruction-address sequence, there’s a continuous flow of instructions with table references when addresses are required. Addresses are independent of instructions.

The system language is designed to implement the problem language for extremely rapid translations allowing program translation each run. Object programs, as efficient as those written in machine language, can be created far faster than with the most advanced conventional computers.

The need for the programmer to know both problem and machine languages is eliminated. Now for the first time, the programmer is free to concentrate on the processing problem itself. Free of the gymnastics he used to employ to make his problem acceptable to the machine, he merely states the problem and the Burroughs B 5000 provides an efficient, rapid solution.

Burroughs Corporation, Detroit 32, Michigan Burroughs Corporation

  1. John M. Hanna says: February 10, 200911:51 pm

    Did Rudyard Kipling make this ad?

  2. mc says: February 10, 200911:57 pm

    This computer (the Burroughs B5500) was 50 years ahead of its time. That is, we’re just now getting ready for something like it — a CPU designed to meet the needs of good programming languages instead of the other way around.

  3. Toronto says: February 11, 20093:02 pm

    Mc – what, you never heard of Multics or Primos or other “Software first” OSes?

    Anyway, I’ve programmed in machine languages of that era, and they were pretty horrid (on “smaller” machines like the NCR 500, anyway.) We used to joke that a single instruction machine (subneg) might be better.

  4. Toronto says: February 11, 200911:58 pm

    If you can write an app, and keep your marbles
    Or talk with Suits at meetings over lunch,
    If neither blogs nor Slashdot galls your yarbles
    If users count on you, but not a bunch.
    If you can fill the unforgiving web page
    With applets that are quick to load and run
    Yours is the desktop and all that’s on it
    And — which is more — you’ll be a Hacker, son.

    – Rudyard Kiloping.

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