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Information Technology Pioneers

Retirees and former employees of Unisys, Lockheed Martin, and their predecessor companies

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*58 topical chapters.

Chapter 22 updated 10/20/17, was page 15, Documents.

 

On this Page

 

Magazine Articles,

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 Monthly Articles

2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007.

Slide Shows

Books Listing

You may need to install a *.pdf reader to view these documents - click then follow directions to download and install their newest reader compatible with your operating system.

'Telling the Story' of our Legacy

    The magazine articles, slide shows, 'Articles for the Month', books, and papers listed hereunder all relate bits or bytes of the ERA to UNISYS and/or ERA to LMCO Legacy. These items supplement the items and sites linked from Contacts and Links; each is just a piece of the many stories in this, an anthology by the people who were part of our legacy since 1946. 
    The Legacy Committee welcomes your inputs of other book titles and/or magazine articles which mention computer based systems developed by ERA, UNIVAC, Sperry, UNISYS, et al'; especially those with Twin Cities content.

Please note: The bit-savers web site (http://bitsavers.informatik.uni-stuttgart.de/) has over 32,000 documents including technical manuals from many UNIVAC/UNISYS/LMCO equipments. We have saved a back-up copy of some of those manuals, linked from our Computers chapters.

Magazine Articles

  • CBI Newsletter, Vol. 35, No. 2, fall 2013: Page 11, A New Computer History Exhibit
  • IEEE Annals of the History of computing, Volume 29 Number 4 October-December 2007 - Arthur Norberg, the Charles Babbage Institute, and the History of Computing.
  • IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, Volume 28 Number 3 July-September 2006 - MESM and the Beginning of the Computer Era in the Soviet Union and Strela-1, the First Soviet Computer: Political Success and Technological Failure. {Editor's note: Their first stored program computer went into service in December, 1951 - designed by Lebedev from Kiev.}
  • IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, Vol. 25, Number 2, April – June 2003 - Before the Burroughs B5000,
  • IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, Vol. 23, No. 1, January-March 2001 - Sperry Rand’s Third-Generation Computers,
  • IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, Vol. 20, No. 3, Sperry Rand’s Transistor Computers, July-September 1998
  • Minnesota Monthly as “Original Geeks”, with text by Jim Lenfestey and Photos by Erik More,
  • From "The Link", Bulletin of the National Cryptology Museum Foundation, Inc. Volume 4, Number 1 - Spring 2001  ATLAS AND THE EARLY DAYS OF COMPUTERS By Harlan Snyder, LCDR USNR, Ret. [submitted by Don Weidenbach]

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Articles for the Month [Our Stories]

The numbering preceeding each entry is for indexing purposes, started at 100 to avoid duplication of website chapter indexing. For a 'Reader's Digest' version of articles through 2015, peruse Recapping a Decade.

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

Slide Shows

Books

Each of the following books mentions ERA or UNIVAC or Sperry or UNISYS while discussing computer history aspects. Many of these are available at the Charles Babbage Institute on the U of MN campus and a few are at the Lawshe Memorial Museum reading room.

Year Title Author Publisher Notes
1950 High Speed Computing Devices Engineering Research Associates, Inc. McGraw-Hill 1983 Reprint Series for the History of Computing by Tomash Publishers. A digital version is available from the Bit Saver's web site, linked from our backup convenience folder.
1959 UNIVAC Products - St Paul A Handbook of Major Products Designed, Developed, and Manufactured at ST. PAUL 16, MINNESOTA 1947 to 1959 Product Planning Division Remington Rand Univac
December 31, 1959
Don Weidenbach donated his copy of this book to the Legacy Committee. The Committee subsequently donated the book to the Charles Babbage Institute. A committee member scanned the book's pages and used character recognition software to create a docx file and a pdf file on a disc which is donated to the Lawshe Memorial Museum. Lowell updated the original doc file by fixing the character recognition errors and eliminating white space of pages between sections. Curt Christensen's copy is at the Lawshe Memorial Museum. The pdf version is linked here
1960  A History of Sperry Rand Corporation  Staff Sperry Rand Publications Department
1964 Case Study of the Development of the Naval Tactical Data Systems R. W. Graf, Research Associate United Research Inc., Cambridge, MA A reference copy of this document is saved on our URL for researchers.
1976 HISTORY OF THE UYK-20(V) DATA PROCESSING SYSTEM ACQUISITION AND ITS IMPACT ON TACTICAL SYSTEMS DEVELOPMENT Robert Richardson Joyce Naval Postgraduate School
Monterey CA
NPS-36J076091, Thanks to George Grey for the pdf file.
1979 From Dits to Bits Herman Lukoff Robotics Press  This has early computer development from a Blue Bell employee perspective.  
1986 Engineering Research Associates, The Wellspring of Minnesota's Computer Industry  Communications Department, St. Paul Minnesota Sperry Booklet created in commemoration of ERA's 40th anniversary. A scanned electronic copy was provided by Michael Lins, January 6, 2016. Mike's father, Ray Lins, worked in plant 1 and his uncle Stan Lins worked in plant 8.
1987  A Few Good Men from UNIVAC David E. Lundstrom MIT Press; Cambridge, MA 1997 re-print by Replica Books; Bridgewater, NJ - Mr. Lundstrom was a UNIVAC employee then a Control Data Employee.
1987 When Computers Went to Sea - The Digitization of the United States Navy Capt. David L. Boslaugh IEEE Press Order #BP00024 Chapter 2 of this book is on line at http://www.ieeeghn.org/wiki/index.php/First-Hand:The_Navy_Codebreakers_and_Their_Digital_Computers_-_Chapter_2_of_the_Story_of_the_Naval_Tactical_Data_System 
1990 History and Evolution of 1100/2200 Mainframe Technology Richard J. Petschauer Copyrightę 1990 Unisys Corporation Printed in U S America This paper was prepared in recognition of the 35th anniversary of USE inc. and was presented at the Fall 1990 Conference in Seattle, Washington.
1996 Computer: A History of the Information Machine Martin Cambell-Kelly and William Aspray Basic Books  
1999 Magnetic Recording - the First 100 Years Eric d. Daniel, C. Denis Mee, & Mark H. Clark IEEE 3 Park Avenue, Ny NY 10016-5997 ISBN 0-7803-4709-9  - Chapter 16 Data Storage on Drums cites the work of Dr. Sidney M. Rubens
2005 Computers and Commerce: A study of Technology and Management at Eckert Mauchly Computer Company, Engineering Research Associates, and Remington Rand, 1946-1957 Dr. A. L. Norberg, Retired CBI Director MIT Press  Dr. Norberg was the original director of the Charles Babbage Institute at the U of MN, also an initial advisor of the Club's advisory committee.
2008 A History of the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering 1888-2008 Edited by James R. Leger University of Minnesota, Minneapolis Pages 182 through 189 discuss ERA and computer pioneering.
2008  Unisys Computers: An Introductory History
you may order this book at http://www.lulu.com/content/2735927.
George T. Gray and Ronald Q. Smith The companies that are encompassed within Unisys were among the pioneers in the field. They rank just behind IBM in the impact they had in the early years of the computer industry. Unisys was formed in 1986 by the merger of Burroughs and Sperry, two companies that had themselves grown through acquisitions and mergers. The first two U.S. companies to build a computer, Eckert-Mauchly Computer Corporation and Engineering Research Associates, were both acquired by Remington Rand Corporation (in 1950 and 1951) which, in turn, merged with Sperry in 1956 to become Sperry Rand Corporation.
2008 The Secret in Building 26, The untold story of America's ultra war against the u-boat enigma codes Jim DeBrosse and Colin Burke  This book relates the WWII activities of William 'Bill' Norris, Ralph Meader, and Howard Engstrom who were three of the four founders of ERA.
2009 "The Cello Maker" and other stories of the working man.  David P. Anderson Chandelle Press, second edition The sixteenth short story in this book is "The Invention of Voice Mail", our July 2007 Article for the Month.
2002? "It Wasn't all Magic: The Early Struggle to Automate Cryptanalysis 1930s- 1960s" http://personal.crocodoc.com/LH6Jqnt?embedded=true Colin Burke, Center for Cryptology History, National Security Agency, 2002. Includes the history of Engineering Research Associates, and some history on CDC, IBM, NCR, Raytheon, and Remington-Rand.  A pdf download of the book: 40 megs/344 pages http://www.fas.org/irp/nsa/; this has a scrolling html of the book.
2013 Digital State, The Story of Minnesota's Computer Industry Dr. Tom Misa University of Minnesota  Press Drawing on rare archival documents, photographs, and a wealth of oral histories, Digital State unveils the remarkable story of computer development in the heartland after World War II. These decades found corporations—concentrated in large part in Minnesota—designing state-of-the-art mainframe technologies, revolutionizing new methods of magnetic data storage, and, for the first time, truly integrating software and hardware into valuable products for the American government and public. Minnesota-based companies such as Engineering Research Associates, Univac, Control Data, Cray Research, Honeywell, and IBM Rochester were major international players and together formed an unrivaled epicenter advancing digital technologies. These companies not only brought vibrant economic growth to Minnesota, they nurtured the state’s present-day medical device and software industries and possibly even tomorrow’s nanotechnology.
2014 Generation of Wealth, The rise of Control Data and how it inspired an era of innovation and investment in the Upper Midwest Donald M. Hall Nodin Press
5114 Cedar Lake Road, Minneapolis MN  55416
The TIMELINE before the Contents page begins with 1945, World War II ends; 1946, Engineering Research Associates (ERA) formed; ...; and ends with 2009, Medtronic and St. Jude are industry leaders.   In between these dates; the author blends innovative people, company histories, stock prices, and personal research into a fascinating, factual story of Control Data Corporation and the spin off of Cray et al' plus the evolution of the Medical Technology industry in Minnesota.
LABenson reviewed Don's draft to assure correctness of the ERA Legacy information.
2016 A History of the Computer Industry: From Relay Computers to the IBM PC Stephen Lindfors
paperback via Amazon.com The book is a short history of the computer industry, starting with relay computers and ending with the IBM PC, introduced in 1981. The book includes two chapters about important people in the industry, plus a glossary, a bibliography, an index and footnotes.
BTW, LABenson reviewed the draft in 2013 for accuracy relative to ERA Legacy information. http://www.amazon.com/History-Computer-Industry-Relay-Computers/dp/1514690802/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1462625198&sr=8-3&keywords=A+History+of+the+Computer+Industry