Celestial Weasel (celestialweasel) wrote,
Celestial Weasel

A dance to the music of mainframes

http://www.ausersmanual.com "Inspired by a recording of an IBM mainframe computer which Jóhann’s father, Jóhann Gunnarsson, made on a reel-to-reel tape machine more than 30 years ago, the piece was originally written to be performed by a string quartet as the accompaniment to a dance piece by the choreographer Erna Ómarsdóttir." (via The Inquirer)

The IBM 1401 is the machine that seems to have largely replaced the IBM 407, the last of the tabulators. The programming languages RPG and FARGO were designed to be easy to migrate to for people who programmed tabulators (by plugging wires into plug-boards). Tabulators are fascinating things. I have an old Wiley book on how to program them. Its pedagogical style is rather weird, not how one would do things today.

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