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Re: [midatlanticretro] Found some Core Memory

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  • B Degnan
    Would not DEC or Nova core be most compatible to what you re doing? ...but for that matter wouldn t be best at first to use a modern RAM so that you can have
    Message 1 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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      Would not DEC or Nova core be most compatible to what you're doing? ...but for that matter wouldn't be best at first to use a modern RAM so that you can have something reliable for testing of the system in general? Then later replace with a core memory ?

      Bd
      --
      Sent from my Android phone with K-9 Mail. Please excuse my brevity.

      Dan Roganti <ragooman@...> wrote:

      I found some Core memory. It's from the same guy who has the mylar papertape. He gave me 2 core memory cards. He mentioned that he remembers this coming from an IBM system. The really cool thing about this is that it assembled in a way where it folds up. I have some pics here. I'm hoping to find out what system this is from. I'm hoping somebody might know from looking at the pics. I also have closeup pics of the board, serial, and part numbers too. Then maybe I can find a manual for this. With some luck and some hacking, I can then wire an interface to this for my homebrew PDP-8.

      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5788472143/in/photostream
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5788471265/in/photostream
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5789025174/in/photostream
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5788469637/in/photostream
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5788469117/in/photostream
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5789023250/in/photostream


      He mentioned that they often used a ASR-35 teletype to punch on this.
      mylar papertape
      http://www.flickr.com/photos/ragooman/5788467889/in/photostream

      =Dan

    • Dan Roganti
      ... it s all Core :) Most likely it s at least a 16bit memory bus, I only need 12bit for a PDP-8 If I m lucky maybe I ll find an actual PDP-8 core memory from
      Message 2 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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        On Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 6:09 AM, B Degnan <billdeg@...> wrote:


        Would not DEC or Nova core be most compatible to what you're doing?


        it's all Core :)
        Most likely it's at least a 16bit memory bus, I only need 12bit for a PDP-8
        If I'm lucky maybe I'll find an actual PDP-8 core memory from a straight 8 machine


         
        ...but for that matter wouldn't be best at first to use a modern RAM so that you can have something reliable for testing of the system in general? Then later replace with a core memory ?


        I do have to build a tester for the core memory, so that I can verify that first.
        Then once I do get to that point of testing code, I'm planning to connect a Eprom/Ram emulator.
        That would take another adapter, but it makes it much easier to download code then.

        =Dan




      • Dave McGuire
        ... I think he s talking about using the raw core plane, so at that level, there s effectively no difference. ... FRAM!! 8-) -Dave -- Dave McGuire Port
        Message 3 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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          On 6/2/11 6:09 AM, B Degnan wrote:
          > Would not DEC or Nova core be most compatible to what you're doing?

          I think he's talking about using the raw core plane, so at that
          level, there's effectively no difference.

          > ...but for that matter wouldn't be best at first to use a modern RAM so
          > that you can have something reliable for testing of the system in
          > general? Then later replace with a core memory ?

          FRAM!! 8-)

          -Dave

          --
          Dave McGuire
          Port Charlotte, FL
        • Dan Roganti
          ... when I took a closer look, it does appear to be a raw core plane - is that PG-rated ;) As there s no support logic on there that you typically see in a
          Message 4 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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            On Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 10:51 AM, Dave McGuire <Mcguire@...> wrote:
            On 6/2/11 6:09 AM, B Degnan wrote:
            > Would not DEC or Nova core be most compatible to what you're doing?

              I think he's talking about using the raw core plane, so at that
            level, there's effectively no difference.

            when I took a closer look, it does appear to be a raw core plane - is that PG-rated ;)
            As there's no support logic on there that you typically see in a memory controller circuit. Other than what appears to be some kind of buffer or level translator chips sparsely located on the edges of the core and routed to the backplane card edge connectors.

            This is a common approach, as even the old systems I worked on used a stand alone memory controller card and individual cards with core memory and the bare essentials.



            > ...but for that matter wouldn't be best at first to use a modern RAM so
            > that you can have something reliable for testing of the system in
            > general? Then later replace with a core memory ?

              FRAM!! 8-)



             Gotta git me some FRAM !!

            =Dan

          • Dave McGuire
            ... They are probably (chips full of) selection diodes for the X/Y array. See DEC-8E-HR1C-D_8eMaint_Feb73.pdf pp.3-75 to 3/78 for a description of how that
            Message 5 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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              On 6/2/11 12:59 PM, Dan Roganti wrote:
              > when I took a closer look, it does appear to be a raw core plane - is
              > that PG-rated ;)
              > As there's no support logic on there that you typically see in a memory
              > controller circuit. Other than what appears to be some kind of buffer or
              > level translator chips sparsely located on the edges of the core and
              > routed to the backplane card edge connectors.

              They are probably (chips full of) selection diodes for the X/Y array.

              See DEC-8E-HR1C-D_8eMaint_Feb73.pdf pp.3-75 to 3/78 for a description
              of how that works, and a few pages before that for schematics. (only
              using PDP-8 as an example because it's well-documented)

              -Dave

              --
              Dave McGuire
              Port Charlotte, FL
            • Jim Scheef
              I would expect anything from IBM to say I B M on it somewhere. In those days, IBM made everything themselves, so another company name would indicate this is
              Message 6 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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                I would expect anything from IBM to say I B M on it somewhere. In those
                days, IBM made everything themselves, so another company name would
                indicate this is from somewhere else.

                Jim

                On 6/2/2011 1:42 PM, Dave McGuire wrote:
                > On 6/2/11 12:59 PM, Dan Roganti wrote:
                > > when I took a closer look, it does appear to be a raw core plane - is
                > > that PG-rated ;)
                > > As there's no support logic on there that you typically see in a memory
                > > controller circuit. Other than what appears to be some kind of buffer or
                > > level translator chips sparsely located on the edges of the core and
                > > routed to the backplane card edge connectors.
                >
                > They are probably (chips full of) selection diodes for the X/Y array.
                >
                > See DEC-8E-HR1C-D_8eMaint_Feb73.pdf pp.3-75 to 3/78 for a description
                > of how that works, and a few pages before that for schematics. (only
                > using PDP-8 as an example because it's well-documented)
                >
                > -Dave
                >
                > --
                > Dave McGuire
                > Port Charlotte, FL
                >
                >
              • s100doctor
                ... The brand name on the core board is Fabri-Tec . They manufactured cord planes for a number of memory board manufacturers. YOu ve got the cores but not the
                Message 7 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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                  , Dan Roganti <ragooman@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > I found some Core memory. It's from the same guy who has the mylar
                  > papertape. He gave me 2 core memory cards. He mentioned that he remembers
                  > this coming from an IBM system. The really cool thing about this is that it
                  > assembled in a way where it folds up. I have some pics here. I'm hoping to
                  > find out what system this is from.

                  The brand name on the core board is "Fabri-Tec". They manufactured cord planes for a number of memory board manufacturers. YOu've got the cores but not the drivers and receivers. This board would plug into a card set with those electronics.

                  I suggest you note the model number and look at all the "core memory board" pictures you can until you find a match for that model number. Then you'll have an idea of what "drove" these core planes.

                  I don't advise trying to build analog core memory read/write electronics. Ask me privately about it if you want, I think a better "deal" would be to trade it for a complete core memory board set.

                  Herb Johnson
                • Dave McGuire
                  ... Hey, it s finicky and fiddly, but it can be done (and has been), and there are many design examples out there. -Dave -- Dave McGuire Port Charlotte, FL
                  Message 8 of 12 , Jun 2, 2011
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                    On 6/2/11 7:54 PM, s100doctor wrote:
                    > I don't advise trying to build analog core memory read/write
                    > electronics. Ask me privately about it if you want, I think a better
                    > "deal" would be to trade it for a complete core memory board set.

                    Hey, it's finicky and fiddly, but it can be done (and has been), and
                    there are many design examples out there.

                    -Dave

                    --
                    Dave McGuire
                    Port Charlotte, FL
                  • Jeff Jonas
                    ... But can they handle the temperate range as things heat up, and the density of the one being considered? The Arduino core project I saw recently is only 8 x
                    Message 9 of 12 , Jun 5, 2011
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                      > > I don't advise trying to build
                      > > analog core memory read/write electronics ...

                      > Hey, it's finicky and fiddly, but it can be done (and has been),
                      > and there are many design examples out there.

                      But can they handle the temperate range as things heat up,
                      and the density of the one being considered?

                      The Arduino core project I saw recently
                      is only 8 x 8 and very sparsely populated.

                      Yes, today's DSPs can do things
                      that required dedicated hardware not long ago,
                      but the algorithms and reliability looks tricky.
                      If that's handled properly, I'd love to see the new ways!
                    • Jeff Jonas
                      ... The core I salvaged from the IBM 1620 and IBM 1130 were merely green frames that stacked together. No IBM anywhere. Even back then, IBM outsourced SOME
                      Message 10 of 12 , Jun 5, 2011
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                        > I would expect anything from IBM to say I B M on it somewhere.

                        The core I salvaged from the IBM 1620 and IBM 1130
                        were merely green frames that stacked together.
                        No "IBM" anywhere.

                        Even back then, IBM outsourced SOME things.
                        The IBM system 1130's plotter is from Calcomp
                        and the paper tape reader from Tally.
                        The semiconductor RAM on the IBM system 38 is from EMM.

                        > In those days, IBM made everything themselves,

                        I wish I could find photos from the IBM Kingston facility's
                        Historical Society. It showed a HUGE foot-locker sized
                        core memory module for the IBM 360,
                        with photos of all the steps of manufacturing, weaving
                        and even re-weaving to replace a failed core!

                        -- jeffj
                      • Dave McGuire
                        ... Core runs hot, sure, but this is well understood and easily handled. If Dan has trouble getting that core plane running, it won t be because it runs too
                        Message 11 of 12 , Jun 5, 2011
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                          On 6/5/11 6:46 AM, Jeff Jonas wrote:
                          >>> I don't advise trying to build
                          >>> analog core memory read/write electronics ...
                          >
                          >> Hey, it's finicky and fiddly, but it can be done (and has been),
                          >> and there are many design examples out there.
                          >
                          > But can they handle the temperate range as things heat up,
                          > and the density of the one being considered?

                          Core runs hot, sure, but this is well understood and easily handled.
                          If Dan has trouble getting that core plane running, it won't be
                          because it runs too hot.

                          > The Arduino core project I saw recently
                          > is only 8 x 8 and very sparsely populated.

                          The sparseness of that design surely had little to do with heat.

                          > Yes, today's DSPs can do things
                          > that required dedicated hardware not long ago,
                          > but the algorithms and reliability looks tricky.
                          > If that's handled properly, I'd love to see the new ways!

                          Nah. Core is pretty reliable when you get a design running. Getting
                          it to that point takes work, though. Most, if not all core systems have
                          a thermistor near a core plane to adjust X/Y drive currents...I suppose
                          one *could* do that with a DSP, but you'd be replacing a simple,
                          easily-modeled circuit with maybe half a dozen transistors and a handful
                          of resistors with a very complex chip and hundreds, if not thousands of
                          lines of code.

                          -Dave

                          --
                          Dave McGuire
                          Port Charlotte, FL
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