punchcard svg file available
cisin at xenosoft.com
Thu Sep 10 13:47:16 CDT 2015
>>> If you find a source of paper stock that works, please let everyone
>>> know about it. The real paper is gone, and will likely never be made
>>> again. It is a specialized stock that is extremely difficult to make.
>> What is different about it? Thickness? Weight/square metre? Density?
>> Impregnated with something?
On Thu, 10 Sep 2015, simon wrote:
> Its hard to explain. it feels tough and bendable, but it is thinner as you
> would expect from the toughness.
Also, had to have the right friction to slide through, but catch on the
rollers. CDC's optical card readers came later, and made dramatic
improvements in DP.
In those days, the cardstock was extremely available, in large sheets and
in precut blanks, in a variety of colors. Print-shops abounded who would
do custom cards, if your business thought that it needed them.
And yet, some card readers were amazingly tolerant!
For example, half a century ago, CBS had a bunch of projects, such as the
National Driver's Test (1966). IBM provided the hardware and software.
They decided to give out Port-A-Punch cards, which were 80 column cards
with every other column of holes pre-perforated, so that anybody could
take a special stylus or a random pencil and create their own hanging
chips/"Chads". But, how to recollect them? They actually had people
stick a stamp on them and MAIL them! ("Business Reply Mail" would have
shifted the franking burden, otherwise it would have made MUCH more sense)
They then successfully ran them through the card reader of a 360! Keep in
mind that it was an IBM PR stunt, so they had a CE standing next to the
reader, clearing jams in real-time. I wonder if IBM cheated and modified
the input maw?
So, the specific card-stock is critical, but it worked with a postage
stamp stuck to it?
Although the hardware reliability was a welcome surprise (I wonder how my
life would have gone if it hadn't), the software wasn't. The live
statistics weren't adding up close enough to 100%! On camera, Walter
Cronkite was stalling, and right behind him, my father was frantically
manually adding the numbers. Starting a week later, there were a copy of
McCracken FORTRAN and Decima Anderson's book on my parent's coffee table.
Instead of continuing to use 084 sorters, we learned a little FORTRAN.
Grumpy Ol' Fred cisin at xenosoft.com
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