KA-10 desirability [was RE: What's the rarest or most unusual computer-related item do you own?]

Rich Alderson RichA at livingcomputers.org
Thu Jan 12 13:47:17 CST 2017

From: Lars Brinkhoff
Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 10:53 PM

> Rich Alderson wrote:

>> Eric's got a KL.  If he had a KA, I would have tracked him down and
>> beaten him to a pulp to lay hands on it--and we're friends.

> This is the third time in a few weeks that I've seen people eagerly
> looking for a KA10.

The founder of LCM+L is Paul Allen.  A KA-10 based PDP-10 is the Holy
Grail, since it's the kind of system on which he and his friends (not just
Bill Gates, but four others from the same school) all learned serious
programming.  (They started, of course, with Dartmouth BASIC on a dialup
from GE Information Systems.)

> Is someone pulling strings behind the scenes?  CIA wants an upgrade for
> their PDP-3?

NSA, whose existence itself was classified Top Secret at the time of the
PDP-3 build.

Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2017 11:00 PM

> Eric Smith wrote:

>> The only part of a KA that I have is the main console switch and light
>> panel. The leadperson for the film Swordfish wanted to rent it from me,
>> but we weren't able to reach an agreement.  I have yet to see the film.

> I think there's only about ten seconds worth of PDP-10 goodness.

Some of the funniest dialog written, though.  "Cal Tech", forsooth!  :-)

> For a greater boost, check out the "Arpanet" episode of The Americans.

Hmm.  I'll have to look for that.


Rich Alderson
Vintage Computing Sr. Systems Engineer
Living Computers: Museum + Labs
2245 1st Avenue S
Seattle, WA 98134

mailto:RichA at LivingComputers.org


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