PDP-10 vs. the world [was RE: GET LAMP is here]

Chuck Guzis cclist at sydex.com
Wed Aug 11 20:55:47 CDT 2010


On 11 Aug 2010 at 18:35, Rich Alderson wrote:

> What's odd about it?  ASCII is a 7-bit code, and if you have 36-bit
> words at 5 characters per word you have a maximal use of memory. 
> (There was also a SIXBIT subset of ASCII which dropped the low 32 and
> high 32 characters and packed 6 to a word, but it wasn't used for
> general computing.)

So what does DECSystem 10 packed character data look like on 7 track 
tape?

CDC used it on occasion--6 bit characters in a 60 bit word was much 
easier to deal with than 7.5 8-bit characters or 8.571428571... 
characters per word. 12 and 10 bit characters were also proposed as 
well as using only the low-order 48 bits of a word.  When the 7.5-per-
word was proposed, the author proposed a new term for 7.5 characters--
a "snaque"  (get it?  nibble, byte  snaque...)
 
> FIELDATA, now, *that's* odd.  ;-)

No--RAD50 is odd.

--Chuck




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