CARDIAC - CARDboard Illustrative Aid to Computation
- I ordered one of these just to have it. ($14)
Own a Piece of Computer History Hearken back to the earliest days of
computer technology with the Cardiac. Published in 1968, this
rudimentary outline and cardboard model illustrates the operation of a
computer from the earliest understanding. This product is now a
historical memento of computer past add it to your collection or give
it to your computer enthusiast friends as a unique gift.
Cardiac (CARDboard Illustrative Aid to Computation) was a learning
aid developed by David Hagelbarger and Saul Fingerman for Bell
Telephone Laboratories in 1968 (Copyright 1966, 1968) to teach high
school students how computers work. The kit consisted of an
instruction manual and a die-cut cardboard "computer".
The computer "operated" by means of pencil and sliding cards. Any
arithmetic was done in the head of the person operating the computer.
The computer operated in base 10 and had 100 memory cells which could
hold signed numbers from ±0 to ±999. It had an instruction set of 10
instructions which allowed CARDIAC to add, subtract, test, shift,
input, output and jump.
Also available from the re-publisher:
Historical info at the Bell Labs archive website about Bell Labs
Science Experiment Kits.
Build your own: (and scanned PDF of original book / manual)
Make Magazine write up.
boing boing articles: CARDIAC: Bell Labs's old cardboard computer and
New-old stock of Bell Labs's cardboard teaching computer, the CARDIAC
The above mentions (like-) "new" versions of the original product
available from ComSpace.com, but that website is now gone.
The purpose of the cinc project is to develop an emulator for Bell
Labs' Cardiac (cardboard illustrative aid to computation) computer.
The main product from this project is a Java program called jcinc.
http://www.j-cinc.org/ (defunct link)
Software Emulator for the Cardboard Illustrative Aid to Computation
for Mac and untested versions for PC *nix written in RealBASIC. (no source)
Lost page archived from May 28, 2008 (images lost)
The SIMPLEX digital computer is a computer educational tool for
teaching basic concepts in computation. It has a very easy to
understand architecture, a small instruction set, and can be
programmed to do several simple computations.
It was inspired by the CARDIAC...
Computer History Museum website historical info.
Someone "wrote a book" about the CARDIAC via web compilation.
This has become a somewhat common money-making methodology. At least
the page is immediately upfront about the content: "Please note that
the content of this book primarily consists of articles available from
Wikipedia or other free sources online." Price 29.00 . (~US$40)
This paper describes the SECRET project, which stands for SVG and
ECMAScript Cardiac Reproduction Emulator Tutor. SECRET emulates
CARDIAC, the CARDboard Illustrative Aid to Computation introduced by
Bell Systems Laboratories in the 1960's.
Fall 2009, SECRET is scheduled for beta release in an introductory
computer science for non-majors course at San Jose State University
and concurrently in teaching high-school students attending San Jose
Apparently the project is so secretive that it is unfortunately not
available anywhere that I could find it online. Perhaps contacting
someone involved in the project would yield its secrets. I have to
admit that the first time I saw this product, I immediately thought,
other projects, and I have trouble staying on one and finishing it
already, so it has been put beyond the back burner.
CEMU CARDIAC Computer Emulator written in TI-89 Basic.
You can probably find other information about this item by performing
a web search. The above seems to be the primary information available.
For hardcore aficionados, there are probably still more obscure
info-items to find.