Keyboard for Beehive Terminal (was B-100)?

Chuck Guzis cclist at sydex.com
Tue Oct 14 11:57:23 CDT 2008


On 14 Oct 2008 at 2:01, Richard wrote:

> > Just realized that this probably isn't a B-100, but rather a Super Bee 
> > terminal.

> The exact key layout and labelling was different for the Super Bee
> compared to what you see in that picture.  At one point we had an
> ASCII animation notes program running where people would edit and type
> in their ASCII animations for playback on the terminal.  I think that
> might have been a first compared to what other people were doing with
> public notes forums.  As a time sharing shop, we were heavily
> influenced by the udel PLATO installation that ran concurrently with
> us.  They had fancy graphics terminals, but we had Super Bees :-).  I
> remember these terminals failing in an interesting way when they
> started to overheat.  Bits in the display memory would start flipping
> causing characters at random positions on the screen to spontaneously
> change.  We learned a quick key sequence that would clear the screen
> and then request a repaint from the host in order to restore the
> screen to sanity in the summer.  (Our office didn't have air
> conditioning, so we had to live with the summer heat and humidity.)
> 
> If you want to unload this "project", I'm happy to take it off your
> hands :-).

It's been awhile since I owned a couple of SuperBees, but they used 
welded-aluminum slab-sided cases and not the fiberglass one shown in 
the photo.  The whole front CRT area was covered with a sheet of 
brown-tinted acrylic, held on with velcro-ish plastic fasteners.  The 
keyboard itself was parallel output ASCII and had two shades of beige 
for most keys with yellow special-function keys.  Several keys had 
little round "windows" illuminated by bi-pin lamps.  The keyboard 
case could have been aluminum, but might also have been die-cast zinc-
-I don't recall, except that it didn't have the sharp corners the 
main unit did.

The SuperBees were page-editing terminals; you could shoot a page of 
text to it, edit it offline and then hit TRANSMIT to send the text 
back to the host.  It was also possible to get the terminal into a 
state where you needed to cycle the power to get it out of some 
unresponsive condition.  When transmitting a page, 1F (hex) was used 
as an EOL character.

CPU in these was an 8008 with shift-register storage.

Cheers,
Chuck




More information about the cctech mailing list