Cataloguing in a museum setting [was Re: nonsense...]

Tony Duell ard at
Fri Oct 22 14:59:35 CDT 2010

> > In the case of a classic computer, what would you label? The casing?
> > The
> > individual PCBs/modules? How would you handle the case of taking 2
> > effectively identical machines acquired at differnet times and using
> > parts from bvth to make one working example, or would a museum never do
> > that? (If the latter, then I consider the policy to be broken!).
> >=20
> Yes.  :-) =20
> Seriously: we do encounter this situation.  When a machine comes in, it is =
> catalogued as an entity.  If we find it necessary to remove a component fro=
> m machine A to install in machine B, the component is separately catalogued=
>  with a note in the record stating that it was originally part of machine A=

OK, that makes sense... I think, acutally, I wouid tie little tags to the 
PCB handles indicating where they'd come from, and leave a note inside 
'machine A' saying that <whatever part> had been moved to 'machine B'. 
Keeping records is essential, but they can get lost. The more places the 
information is recorded the better.

> .  =20
> I did this recently with a machine that came as a system containing an RK05=
>  drive identified as non-functional.  We used the RK8-E from that machine w=
> ith another PDP-8/e that also had RK05 drives but no RK8-E. =20

Incidnetally, It will take some finding, but I might have a spare RK8E 
board set. I certainly don't have a spare drive cable for it, though...

Abd  hope you're planning on repairing that RK05 :-)

> It's always a judgement call when one must balance preservation and restora=
> tion.  -- Ian=20

True enough. For my own machines I always err on the side of restoration. 
As I said the other day, the perpose of a computer is to 'compute', and I 
have no interest in collecting non-working plastic and metal boxes full 
of PCBs ;-). 


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