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Re: [midatlanticretro] Semi-OT: history of phone phreaking

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  • Evan Koblentz
    ... Finished reading the book. I still highly recommend it, despite the mistake about Bell Labs computer experience, and despite some storytelling repetition
    Message 1 of 17 , Mar 30, 2013
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      >>> Whoa, I just found a significant factual mistake in the book.

      Finished reading the book. I still highly recommend it, despite the mistake about Bell Labs computer experience, and despite some storytelling repetition in a few of the middle chapters.

      I emailed Lapsley to compliment him, politely inform him of the error (and offer to put him in contact with some TRADIC people, re: were they consulted by the telephone network engineers?) and invite him to next year's VCF East (he's already done VCF West and HOPE).

      G'night all.
    • Systems Glitch
      ... Did Jen/polishsputnik et al ever get anything off the ground in Blacksburg? Last time I talked to her, VT s CS department was interested in helping fund
      Message 2 of 17 , Mar 31, 2013
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        > The hackerspace is a whole other deal. Basically I funded anything that
        > wasn't paid by members, members didn't pay that often, my employer has
        > only been cutting partial paychecks for the past 3+ years, and others are
        > trying to claw into the membership and hackerspace idea for their
        > for-profit places. So the whole thing is a huge mess, and I'm kind of
        > burned out on it all for a bit. There is some thoughts about taking it
        > private and just really driving towards making new things.

        Did Jen/polishsputnik et al ever get anything off the ground in Blacksburg? Last time I talked to her, VT's CS department was interested in helping fund it.

        Thanks,
        Jonathan
      • B. Degnan
        ... switching stations to transistor-based ones. He wrote that by summer/fall 1955, the decision was made to build a computerized system. However, there was an
        Message 3 of 17 , Mar 31, 2013
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          -------- Original Message --------
          > From: "Evan Koblentz" <evan@...>
          > Sent: Saturday, March 30, 2013 10:53 PM
          > To: "MARCH Yahoo Midatlanticretro" <midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com>
          > Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] Semi-OT: history of phone phreaking
          >
          > Oops, I clicked "send" too soon. Full message follows:
          >
          > >>> Whoa, I just found a significant factual mistake in the book.
          >
          > On page 233, Lapsley discusses Bell Labs' transition from relay-based
          switching stations to transistor-based ones. He wrote that by summer/fall
          1955, the decision was made to build a computerized system. However, there
          was an obstacle: "Bell Labs had never built a computer before and its
          engineers had never written a line of computer code."
          >
          > That's wrong. Bell Labs developed TRADIC (Transistorized Digital
          Computer) starting in 1954 and announced it to the public on March 14,
          1955: http://thisdayintechhistory.com/03/14/bell-labs-announces-tradic/.
          >
          >

          What about the 1944 Bell Labs Model 3? Assuming that the Model I, II, III,
          IV, V wereanalog computers that one did not program with coded input, he
          should clarify that he was talking about an electronic/digital computer.
        • Evan Koblentz
          ... He did. Specifically he meant a transistor computer, which TRADIC was, and which the new signaling system was.
          Message 4 of 17 , Mar 31, 2013
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            >> he should clarify that he was talking about an electronic/digital computer.

            He did. Specifically he meant a transistor computer, which TRADIC was, and which the new signaling system was.
          • Evan Koblentz
            Phil responded to me this morning and acknowledged the mistake. He said he ll add it to the errata list at http://explodingthephone.com/errata.php. He also
            Message 5 of 17 , Mar 31, 2013
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              Phil responded to me this morning and acknowledged the mistake. He said
              he'll add it to the errata list at http://explodingthephone.com/errata.php.

              He also said he's glad to speak at VCF East 9.1 next spring, pending
              schedules.

              Related: I found this two-part article about Bell Labs' earlier
              electromechanical computers: http://tinyurl.com/cjmh9fp.
            • Evan Koblentz
              ... Update ... he did as he promised, and gave me a hat-tip: http://explodingthephone.com/errata.php
              Message 6 of 17 , Mar 31, 2013
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                > Phil responded to me this morning and acknowledged the mistake. He said
                > he'll add it to the errata list at http://explodingthephone.com/errata.php.

                Update ... he did as he promised, and gave me a hat-tip:
                http://explodingthephone.com/errata.php
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