Thursday, August 25, 2011

The history of computer storage

ExtremeTech reports: "Throughout the history of computers, one aspect has plagued and restricted its growth more than any other: permanent storage. From the very first computers that used punched cards and tape for input and storage to the refrigerator-sized hard drive (pictured right), the tale of non-volatile memory lays the foundations for today’s ubiquitously digital world. At the same time, however, computer storage is strangely disassociated from the breakneck advances in silicon transistor fabrication, and so it offers an interesting counterpoint to the Megahertz War, Moore’s Law, and today’s surge towards low-power system-on-chip computing." (read the rest of the article)

The IBM PC Era: Where It All Started

eWEEK reports: "Aug. 12 marked the 30th anniversary of the introduction of IBM’s 5150 personal computer. Recently, IBM executive Mark Dean, one of the engineers of the original IBM PC, said the post-PC era is here, and that it's not the devices, but the social interaction they enable, which now is driving innovation."  (Read the rest of the article)

Friday, August 19, 2011

How volunteers rebuilt World War II computers

PC Pro reports: "A single photograph, scraps of circuit diagrams drawn from memory and a pile of disused components – it isn’t much to go on, but from such meagre beginnings, engineers rebuilt one of the precursors to the modern computer.

The Tunny decryption machine – on display at The Museum of National Computing at Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire – was a feat of engineering both during World War II when it was created, and over the past five years when it was rebuilt. This is the story of how a team of volunteers turned scraps of information into a fully functioning replica of a machine that helped to win the war." (read the rest of the article)