An interesting kit builds circuits that solve problems and play games.
“Electric brains” that work in much the same manner as giant computers can now be built quickly and cheaply by the novice using the new Geniac Construction Kit.
One of the most remarkable kits ever introduced to the public, the Geniac kit provides material and instructions for building 125 separate circuits for operating as many “brain machines.” Among the devices that may be built are logic machines for comparing and reasoning; cryptographic machines for coding and decoding; games such as tic-tac-toe and nim; arithmetic machines for both decimal and binary computations; puzzles such as “the space ship airlock,” “the fox, hen, corn, and hired man;” and miscellaneous devices such as a burglar alarm, an automatic oil furnace circuit, etc.
Last-minute news and notes to keep you up-to-date
By ARTHUR FISHER
NASA fights auto pollution
The big guns of aerospace technology are being enlisted in the battle against the major source of air pollution in this countryâ€”automobile exhaust. The mission: to reduce the one-quarter to one-half ton of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons each car spews into the atmosphere in a year, as a result of incomplete fuel combustion. The battle plan: Develop a thermal reactor that would replace the standard exhaust manifold and serve as an afterburner. But such a reactor must withstand temperatures occasionally exceeding 2,000 degrees F, thermal shock from cold starts, and jarring vibrationsâ€”all problems routinely encountered in space exploration.
Robot Machines Are Cutting Costs, Boosting Profits and Making Jobs, Bringing More Leisure to Everyone.
THOUGH its history is brief, automation already has its own folklore. One of its most widely told legends concerns C.I.O. President Walter P. Reuther and a Ford executive who were touring Ford’s automated engine plant in Cleveland. As they strode past huge self-operating tools that bored cylinder holes, positioned connecting rods and bolted down manifolds, the Ford executive wisecracked: “You know, not one of these machines pays dues to the U.A.W.” Retorted Reuther: “And not one of them buys new Ford cars, either.”
FOR THE MATHEMATICIAN who’s ahead of his time
IBM is looking for a special kind of mathematician, and will pay especially well for his abilities.
This man is a pioneer, an educatorâ€”with a major or graduate degree in Mathematics, Physics, or Engineering with Applied Mathematics equivalent.
You may be the man.
Tiny new memory cell
Too small to be seen in detail with an ordinary microscope, this mite of a memory cell developed by Bell Telephone Laboratories appears here courtesy of the scanning electron microscope. (Some of the dust particles in this photo are the size of a wavelength of light.) The cells are a new kind of silicon semiconductor memory called “charge transfer diode memory,” and are destined for future telephone switching systems, where they will permit computer-memory access speeds in billionths rather than millionths of a second.
With plug-in programs, anybody can use these personal computers
Newest home computers can do special work or use “canned” programs
By WILLIAM J. HAWKINS
“Have a seat,” said Ted Jernigan of Texas Instruments. I was about to get a demo of the newest computer designed for the home.
A simple gray box, resembling a portable typewriter, but smaller, sat on the corner of a desk. A single cable connected it to the TV set in front of me. Electronic music was coming from the TV speaker, and on the screen a color cartoon, also created by the computer, showed an animated hand pressing the space bar of a simulated typewriter console.
Over-the-phone computer data bank
Telecomputing Corp. of America is now offering a computer information service called The Source. Actually a large computer located in Virginia that contains some 2000 programs, The Source includes a tie-in with the UPI and New York Times news and data banks. Type in your question and you get answers on everything from the latest news and stock-market reports to methods of conserving energy.
Engineering hours turn into minutes when you speed up your data analysis
You can do it yourself with these Telecomputing Instruments
Today you can reduce and analyze film and oscillograph data faster than ever before. Telecomputing Instruments, in conjunction with electronic computing equipment, have made this possible.
Artificial MINDâ€”Next from Science
COMPUTER experts keep reassuring us that Man and his mind will never be replaced by their electronic marvels. But a small, doughnut-shaped electronic neuron has been announced that artificially duplicates part of the human nervous system. And it carries out learning processes, according to Aeronutronic Division of Ford Motor Co.
This is a pretty fantastic article. It’s really amazing how forward thinking these guys were. I loved how Jobs kept pointing out the fact that the Macintosh was designed so well that it actually had less chips than a standard IBM video card. It’s also pretty incredible to see how Steve Jobs’ devotion to making designs that are as simple and elegant as possible was exactly the same as it is today. This quote could just as easily have come from an article about the iPhone:
“Jobs: If you read the Apple’s first brochure, the headline was “Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication.” What we meant by that was that when you first attack a problem it seems really simple because you don’t understand it. Then when you start to really understand it, you come up with these very complicated solutions because it’s really hairy. Most people stop there. But a few people keep burning the midnight oil and finally understand the underlying principles of the problem and come up with an elegantly simple solution for it. But very few people go the distance to get there”.
By the way, if you liked this article you really have to check out folklore.org. It’s a site created by Andy Hertzfeld that’s full wonderful stories about the creation of the Macintosh by the people who created it.
He also wrote a great book covering the same subject called Revolution in The Valley.
An Interview: The Macintosh Design Team – The making of Macintosh
On October 14, 1983, the design team for Apple Computer Inc.’s new Macintosh computer met with BYTE Managing Editor Phil Lemmons at the company’s Cupertino, California, headquarters. In the dialogue that followed, Bill Atkinson, Steve fobs, Andy Hertzfeld, Larry Kenyon, Joanna Hoffman, Burrell Smith, Dave Egner, Chris Espinosa, Steve Capps, Jerry Manock, Bruce Horn, and George Crowe discussed the evolution of their brainchild.
BYTE: How did the Macintosh project begin?
Jobs: What turns on Andy and Burrell and Chris and Bill and Larry and everyone else here is building something really inexpensive so that everyone can afford it. It’s not very many years ago that most of us in this room couldn’t have afforded a $5000 computer. We realized that we could build a supercheap computer that would run Bill Atkinson’s amazing Quickdraw and have a mouse on itâ€” in essence, build a really cheap implementation of Lisa’s technology that would use some of that software technology. That’s when the Macintosh as we know it was started.