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Re: Progress on 11/20 exhibit; other exhibit news

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  • Herb Johnson
    Herb, Something that always appealing at a computer museum, I think, is having one of these minicomputer circuit cards mounted in a glass display (a spare
    Message 1 of 21 , Jun 3, 2008
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      Herb,

      Something that always appealing at a computer museum, I think, is
      having one of these minicomputer circuit cards mounted in a glass
      display (a spare board that is). There's nothing more interesting to
      visitors that getting to see the actual circuitry up front and in
      person (even though it's not running). And maybe with a little placard
      with a short description of how many transistors were possible or a
      speed comparison of the circuit card.

      =Dan

      We'll have a PDP-11 type card as part of the exhibit, for visitors to
      handle. MARCH has - or had - some loose cards, I could not find them
      last Sunday even with Evan's help. Does anyone familar with the MARCH
      collection, know what happened to one of their boxes of DEC computer
      cards? But I'll find a card, or supply a card, for show and tell.
      Thanks for the suggestion.

      Herb JOhnson
      retrotechnology.com
    • Herb Johnson
      http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/ The PDP-11 Web page linked above, in its introduction , now has two links to PROTOTYPE POSTERS for the PDP-11 exhibit. I
      Message 2 of 21 , Jul 10, 2008
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        http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/

        The PDP-11 Web page linked above, in its "introduction", now has two
        links to PROTOTYPE POSTERS for the PDP-11 exhibit. I welcome comments,
        but these are examples of FORMAT and general layout - the content is
        rough and may change.

        The posters are several megabyte Word files, due to embedded large
        image files, and of course for best printing. The general format, with
        header and footer and fonts and use of Word, are similar to methods
        used by Evan and by InfoAge to make posters. They will be printed by
        InfoAge with their large inkjet printer. All this was previously
        reported and discussed in this list, and/or with the MARCH Board.

        For any detailed comments to me, please contact me directly via email,
        not via the MARCH Mail list. Use the email addresses below. I may miss
        your MARCH list post, there is just too much traffic here for me to
        keep up. I have much work to do before Sept.

        Herb Johnson
        retrotechnology.com

        Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
        http://www.retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/ web site
        http://www.retrotechnology.net/herbs_stuff/ domain mirror
        my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
        if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
        "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, CP/M, 8-inch floppy drives
        S-100 IMSAI Altair computers & docs by "Dr. S-100"
      • B. Degnan
        Herb, Just a quick note...I found the octal listing for the bootstrap. Once loaded, a person can use to load a teletype tape, etc. I will be testing when
        Message 3 of 21 , Jul 18, 2008
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          Herb,
          Just a quick note...I found the octal listing for the bootstrap. Once
          loaded, a person can use to load a teletype tape, etc. I will be testing
          when time permits. I have to start getting serious about my VCF exhibits too!
          Bill
        • Herb Johnson
          ... testing ... exhibits too! ... Good work. How about writing up a note about the bootstrap process? I ll add it to the 11/20 Web page. For those not familiar
          Message 4 of 21 , Jul 18, 2008
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            "B. Degnan" <billdeg@...> wrote:
            >
            > Herb,
            > Just a quick note...I found the octal listing for the bootstrap. Once
            > loaded, a person can use to load a teletype tape, etc. I will be
            testing
            > when time permits. I have to start getting serious about my VCF
            exhibits too!
            > Bill
            >

            Good work. How about writing up a note about the bootstrap process?
            I'll add it to the 11/20 Web page. For those not familiar with the
            process, a typical bootstrap for 1960's-70's minicomputers was:

            hand-load a short papertape reader program via front panel;
            load a paper tape with a "bootstrap" program, like a larger loader;
            that loader may load a driver to read a specific part of a hard drive
            --or a section of a boot floppy disk
            --or a section from a cassette or 7/9 track tape
            ...which loads in an operating system for that device.

            Herb Johnson
            retrotechnology.com
          • Herb Johnson
            http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/ The PDP-11/20 Web page above, now starts with a section on the upcoming MARCH exhibit of the 11/20. In that section are
            Message 5 of 21 , Jul 27, 2008
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              http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/

              The PDP-11/20 Web page above, now starts with a section on the
              upcoming MARCH exhibit of the 11/20. In that section are links to
              three HTML documents which are derived from the Word files for the
              three MARCH 11/20 posters in progress.

              I'd like comments and certainly corrections to these posters. (Don't
              fuss about minor layout issues with the HTML documents, they are not
              exactly like the .DOC files.) These are works in progress but time is
              short. The three posters cover the NBS scanner work of this 11/20;
              notes on the front panel and on paper tape; and some background about
              "minicomputers" in general.

              I need to work now on the videos from David Gesswein, of his front
              panel and his use of Teletypes, which I hope to display as videos with
              the exhibit. Those videos have been reduced in size and so are more
              accessable now: links are buried on the Web page, under the title "How
              was the 11/20 operated?". I will add a link from the "exhibit"
              section, my bad. Also I hope to have some DEC artifacts to show with
              the 11/20.

              Herb Johnson
              retrotechnology.com

              Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
              http://www.retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/ web site
              http://www.retrotechnology.net/herbs_stuff/ domain mirror
              my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
              if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
              "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, CP/M, 8-inch floppy drives
              S-100 IMSAI Altair computers & docs by "Dr. S-100"
            • B. Degnan
              ... Herb, The whole collection of pages and info is very well done, so far the best documentation of any MARCH unit to date. If you want to send me the
              Message 6 of 21 , Jul 27, 2008
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                At 10:50 PM 7/27/2008 +0000, you wrote:
                >http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/
                >
                >The PDP-11/20 Web page above, now starts with a section on the
                >upcoming MARCH exhibit of the 11/20. In that section are links to
                >three HTML documents which are derived from the Word files for the
                >three MARCH 11/20 posters in progress.
                >
                >I'd like comments and certainly corrections to these posters.


                Herb,
                The whole collection of pages and info is very well done, so far the best
                documentation of any MARCH "unit" to date. If you want to send me the
                final print version PDFs so I can look at it from a printer's eye, let me know.

                Bill

                p.s. Do we have a similar write-up of the GRABBE collection? Do we have
                plans to actually exhibit this? I kind of feel like it has been moth
                balled. I admit, it did not occur to me when planning InfoAge Launch. Is
                this even in MARCH's perview anyway?
              • Herb Johnson
                ... best ... let me know. ... Thanks for the compliments. Look closely at the content if you please, as I now work on content. After some printing tests, I ll
                Message 7 of 21 , Jul 28, 2008
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                  "B. Degnan" <billdeg@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Herb,
                  > The whole collection of pages and info is very well done, so far the
                  best
                  > documentation of any MARCH "unit" to date. If you want to send me the
                  > final print version PDFs so I can look at it from a printer's eye,
                  let me know.
                  >
                  > Bill

                  Thanks for the compliments. Look closely at the content if you please,
                  as I now work on content. After some printing tests, I'll find out how
                  well they work as printed posters.

                  Everything I've done is on the PDP-11 Web page. Look for links there
                  to the documents and files from which the posters will be printed.
                  (From the Web page, I primarily show the posters as HTML files for
                  casual access and content review: they are much smaller files than the
                  poster Word files.)

                  Evan is printing the posters, at InfoAge, with InfoAge equipment, with
                  which he is familiar. It's 60 miles from me, so that suits me fine. So
                  talk to Evan about final versions; talk to me about content.

                  Herb Johnson
                  retrotechnology.com
                • Herb Johnson
                  http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/ The PDP-11/20 Web home page above, now starts with a section on the upcoming MARCH exhibit of the 11/20. In that section
                  Message 8 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                    http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/

                    The PDP-11/20 Web home page above, now starts with a section on the
                    upcoming MARCH exhibit of the 11/20. In that section I now link to a
                    new Web page which is a "simulation" of the *actual MARCH exhibit*.

                    http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/PDP_11_exhibit_1.htm

                    (This link may change but the home page will be stable and always
                    provide a link.) This page shows represeentations of the PDP-11/20,
                    the posters, videos, and other artifacts to be exhibited. The images
                    on that page link to full-text versions and images and videos which
                    will be exhibited. (The large DOC files and image files of the posters
                    are replaced with smaller HTML documents.)

                    I want to thank David Gesswein, for loans of a PDP-11 card and a PDP-8
                    original paper tape. He's also donated two copies of that paper tape,
                    for the public to "examine". The card and original tape will be housed
                    in plastic.

                    To those who say "I can't wait to see the exhibit", *look at it now*.
                    Don't wait! I can fix it now, not later! Once again, PLEASE please
                    review these documents. Contact me for changes, corrections, comments.
                    I've had some good feedback already and have made changes. Thank you.

                    I do not anticipate making major changes or additions. There is not
                    enough time left. There is still work to do! But I can correct text
                    and manipulate images and so forth. Ultimately Evan will print these
                    posters and he'll be reluctant to reprint them!

                    Herb Johnson
                    retrotechnology.com

                    Herbert R. Johnson, New Jersey USA
                    http://www.retrotechnology.com/herbs_stuff/ web site
                    http://www.retrotechnology.net/herbs_stuff/ domain mirror
                    my email address: hjohnson AAT retrotechnology DOTT com
                    if no reply, try in a few days: herbjohnson ATT comcast DOTT net
                    "Herb's Stuff": old Mac, CP/M, 8-inch floppy drives
                    S-100 IMSAI Altair computers & docs by "Dr. S-100"
                  • Mike Loewen
                    Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I acquired a pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is interested, drop me a
                    Message 9 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                      Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I acquired a
                      pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is
                      interested, drop me a note and I'll let you know exactly what I have. I
                      can bring the lot along to VCF East, next month.


                      Mike Loewen mloewen@...
                      Old Technology http://sturgeon.css.psu.edu/~mloewen/Oldtech/
                    • Evan
                      I never heard of that. Educate us. ... From: Mike Loewen Subj: [midatlanticretro] Arcnet Date: Fri Aug 1, 2008 8:27 pm Size:
                      Message 10 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                        I never heard of that. Educate us.

                        -----Original Message-----

                        From: Mike Loewen <mloewen@...>
                        Subj: [midatlanticretro] Arcnet
                        Date: Fri Aug 1, 2008 8:27 pm
                        Size: 1K
                        To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com


                        Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I acquired a
                        pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is
                        interested, drop me a note and I'll let you know exactly what I have. I
                        can bring the lot along to VCF East, next month.


                        Mike Loewen mloewen@...
                        Old Technology http://sturgeon.css.psu.edu/~mloewen/Oldtech/

                        ------------------------------------

                        Yahoo! Groups Links
                      • Ray Sills
                        Very interesting. ARCNET is retro... but still in use. 73 de Ray
                        Message 11 of 21 , Aug 1, 2008
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                          <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ARCNET>

                          Very interesting. ARCNET is retro... but still in use.

                          73 de Ray


                          On Aug 1, 2008, at 8:58 PM, Evan wrote:

                          >
                          > I never heard of that. Educate us.
                          >
                          > -----Original Message-----
                          >
                          > From: Mike Loewen <mloewen@...>
                          > Subj: [midatlanticretro] Arcnet
                          > Date: Fri Aug 1, 2008 8:27 pm
                          > Size: 1K
                          > To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                          >
                          >
                          > Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I
                          > acquired a
                          > pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is
                          > interested, drop me a note and I'll let you know exactly what I
                          > have. I
                          > can bring the lot along to VCF East, next month.
                          >
                          >
                          > Mike Loewen mloewen@...
                          > Old Technology http://sturgeon.css.psu.edu/~mloewen/Oldtech/
                          >
                          > ------------------------------------
                          >
                          > Yahoo! Groups Links
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > ------------------------------------
                          >
                          > Yahoo! Groups Links
                          >
                          >
                          >
                        • Mike Loewen
                          ... So, no interest in the ARCNET stuff? Next step is to offer to the Classic Computers list. Here s what I have: Manuals: Tiara Lancard/A * PC ARCNET User s
                          Message 12 of 21 , Aug 3, 2008
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                            On Fri, 1 Aug 2008, Mike Loewen wrote:

                            > Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I acquired a
                            > pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is
                            > interested, drop me a note and I'll let you know exactly what I have. I
                            > can bring the lot along to VCF East, next month.

                            So, no interest in the ARCNET stuff? Next step is to offer to the
                            Classic Computers list. Here's what I have:

                            Manuals:

                            Tiara Lancard/A * PC
                            ARCNET User's Manual for CN008AH and CN008TH
                            Configuration Guide for the SMC ARCNET-PC130 Network Controller
                            Board
                            CNet 120A ARCNET User's Manual (qty 4)

                            Diskette: ARCNET 5.25" MEGA Diskette #75-00790-3000

                            Cards (8-bit ISA):

                            SMC ARCNET-PC130 (qty 5)
                            Tiara Lancard/A * PC (qty 12)
                            CNet ARCNET 120A (qty 1)

                            Active Hubs:

                            Addtron ARCNET Active Hub, 8-port, ARC800ST (qty 5)
                            CNet Arcnet HUB 008AH, 8-port (qty 2)
                            (The Addtron and CNet hubs have an internal power supply and take
                            a standard power cord)
                            Tiara ARCNET LanHub, 8-port (qty 2), Power Supplies (qty 3)
                            SMC ARCNET Active Hub, 8-port (qty 15), Power Supplies (qty 9)

                            Cables: RG-62A/U (qty 5)

                            Again, if anyone has any use for this stuff, I can bring it to VCF
                            East. If not, I'll offer it to the CCtalk list.


                            Mike Loewen mloewen@...
                            Old Technology http://sturgeon.css.psu.edu/~mloewen/Oldtech/
                          • jack99rubin
                            ... acquired a ... have. I ... Mike, I d be interested in a couple active hubs and a card or two. One of my (future) projects is getting CP/NET working again.
                            Message 13 of 21 , Aug 4, 2008
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                              > Are any of you guys into Arcnet? During a rescue today, I
                              acquired a
                              > pile of ISA Arcnet cards, hubs and power supplies. If anyone is
                              > interested, drop me a note and I'll let you know exactly what I
                              have. I
                              > can bring the lot along to VCF East, next month.
                              >
                              >
                              > Mike Loewen mloewen@...
                              > Old Technology http://sturgeon.css.psu.edu/~mloewen/Oldtech/
                              >

                              Mike,

                              I'd be interested in a couple active hubs and a card or two. One of
                              my (future) projects is getting CP/NET working again. This was a
                              Digital Research protocol that ran over ARCnet, so having the
                              physical layer stuff will be helpful. My system is S100 based but
                              having a PC card will allow an emulator connection as well. Should be
                              fun.

                              I won't be able to attend VCF this year but hopefully it shouldn't be
                              too difficult to either ship a small package or hang on to the stuff
                              until I get east later in the year.

                              Thanks,
                              Jack

                              Thanks,
                              Jack
                            • Herb Johnson
                              http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/ The page and poster documents were improved with better images of the interior boards of the 11/20 and of the front
                              Message 14 of 21 , Aug 4, 2008
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                                http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/

                                The page and poster documents were improved with better images of the
                                interior boards of the 11/20 and of the front panel. During a visit to
                                InfoAge this weekend, I tagged the boxes of the Greenough collection
                                and put the rough inventory list as a document into some of the boxes.
                                A better picture of all the boxes is also on the Web page. Minor work
                                of this sort may continue, I don't anticipate major changes to the
                                posters and exhibit.

                                Herb Johnson
                                retrotechnology.com
                              • Herb Johnson
                                Summary: The 11/20 Web page, and the Virtual Exhibit Web page, have been improved and updated. Major development work is now completed. Some work remains. The
                                Message 15 of 21 , Aug 12, 2008
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                                  Summary: The 11/20 Web page, and the Virtual Exhibit Web page, have
                                  been improved and updated. Major development work is now completed.
                                  Some work remains.

                                  The 11/20 Web page at

                                  http://retrotechnology.com/pdp11/index.html

                                  ..now has an index, which is followed by the current status of the
                                  exhibit, before the Introduction. A large portion of inventory
                                  information has been transferred to another Web page. These changes
                                  should help in navigation.

                                  The Virtual Exhibit Web page at:

                                  http://retrotechnology.com/pdp11/PDP_11_exhibit_1.htm

                                  ...now includes a Web page with links to the videos for the exhibit.
                                  This page shows all the content and the rough arrangement of the
                                  physical exhibit, as images. Posters are shown as equivalent HTML
                                  documents. Links from the photos go to documents, images and now
                                  videos. More information is on the 11/20 Web page.

                                  Since we are now at about 30 days before the MARCH museum and VCF-E
                                  show, I now consider major development of the 11/20 exhibit CLOSED. No
                                  major changes will be made. This is a good opportunity to review the
                                  Virtual exhibit to consider any MINOR changes.

                                  Remaining work: 1) some DEC books for the exhibit. 2) set up a
                                  computer to show the videos. 3) a MARCH-owned DEC card for the
                                  exhibit, if available. 4) a Lexan cover for the 11/20 front panel. 5)
                                  production of the posters and a full-sized image of the 11/20 boards
                                  in place. 6) physical work on the exhibit and artifacts, just before
                                  the show.

                                  One bit of explanation. Because the 11/20 has its backplane in the top
                                  of the case, with the boards hanging DOWN, we can't show the interior
                                  of the system. So I'll ask Evan to print a full-sized photo of the
                                  cards and THAT will be displayed on TOP of the system.

                                  Note to Evan: DOC files for the posters and full size images are
                                  available from another section of my Web site. Check the 11/20 Web
                                  page "status" section or previous emails from me for links.

                                  Herb Johnson
                                  retrotechnology.com
                                • Ian King
                                  Well, sorry, I won t be in the area on Sunday.... :-) But I did want to ask a question that we were batting around today. We were commenting on what sorts of
                                  Message 16 of 21 , Aug 15, 2008
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                                    Well, sorry, I won't be in the area on Sunday.... :-)

                                    But I did want to ask a question that we were batting around today. We
                                    were commenting on what sorts of machines you see in people's individual
                                    collections - for instance, I have a VAX 6000-660, but not an 11/780 in
                                    large part because the latter machine pretty much requires three-phase
                                    power. But what we were curious about was: does anyone in the
                                    hobbyist/collector community have an IBM 360? I knew a guy who was
                                    proud of his 1401, and I've seen restoration stories about various other
                                    systems, but not a 360.

                                    Thoughts? Thanks -- Ian

                                    On Fri, 2008-08-15 at 21:17 -0400, Evan wrote:
                                    > I'll be at the museum around noon this Sunday and could use 2 or 3
                                    > helpers. We are * very close * to being able to set up computers for
                                    > exhibiting! Just have to move a few more small-ish things. (I know
                                    > I've been saying that for months, but now it's pretty much true...)
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                    >
                                  • Joe Giliberti
                                    Me and possibly Jeff F./Rose should be available tomorrow. What time? 11a? Joe
                                    Message 17 of 21 , Aug 16, 2008
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                                      Me and possibly Jeff F./Rose should be available tomorrow. What time? 11a?

                                      Joe

                                      On Sat, Aug 16, 2008 at 2:32 AM, Ian King <iking@...> wrote:

                                      Well, sorry, I won't be in the area on Sunday.... :-)

                                      But I did want to ask a question that we were batting around today. We
                                      were commenting on what sorts of machines you see in people's individual
                                      collections - for instance, I have a VAX 6000-660, but not an 11/780 in
                                      large part because the latter machine pretty much requires three-phase
                                      power. But what we were curious about was: does anyone in the
                                      hobbyist/collector community have an IBM 360? I knew a guy who was
                                      proud of his 1401, and I've seen restoration stories about various other
                                      systems, but not a 360.

                                      Thoughts? Thanks -- Ian


                                      On Fri, 2008-08-15 at 21:17 -0400, Evan wrote:
                                      > I'll be at the museum around noon this Sunday and could use 2 or 3
                                      > helpers. We are * very close * to being able to set up computers for
                                      > exhibiting! Just have to move a few more small-ish things. (I know
                                      > I've been saying that for months, but now it's pretty much true...)
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >
                                      >


                                    • Evan Koblentz
                                      No, 12. Better chance of me showing up on time that way! ... From: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com [mailto:midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Joe
                                      Message 18 of 21 , Aug 16, 2008
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                                        Message
                                        No, 12.  Better chance of me showing up on time that way!
                                         
                                        -----Original Message-----
                                        From: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com [mailto:midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Joe Giliberti
                                        Sent: Saturday, August 16, 2008 10:24 PM
                                        To: midatlanticretro@yahoogroups.com
                                        Subject: Re: [midatlanticretro] Another Sunday, all welcome to help out...

                                        Me and possibly Jeff F./Rose should be available tomorrow. What time? 11a?

                                        Joe
                                      • Herb Johnson
                                        http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/ As Evan posted, I delivered to MARCH the artifacts for the PDP-11/20 exhibit. The Sony VAIO & Linux system was delivered,
                                        Message 19 of 21 , Aug 25, 2008
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                                          http://www.retrotechnology.com/pdp11/

                                          As Evan posted, I delivered to MARCH the artifacts for the PDP-11/20
                                          exhibit. The Sony VAIO & Linux system was delivered, to show the
                                          videos produced by David Gesswein, who has also loaned MARCH a PDP-11
                                          card and original paper tape.

                                          Additionally, today I have received two PDP-11 paperback "handbooks"
                                          from Paul Popelka. He is a PDP-11 owner who contacted MARCH recently.
                                          The 1971 PDP-11 Processor Handbook includes the 11/20, that's an
                                          important edition. The Peripherals Handbook from 1973 is also
                                          appropriate to the 1970 PDP-11/20 on display. I'll confirm with him
                                          these are donations, not loans.

                                          Also placed with the exhibit, was a 1975 DEC "interfaces handbook"
                                          which was originally donated with other books to MARCH by Joe Giliberti.

                                          It was common in the 60's and 70's to offer minicomputer documentation
                                          in paperback form. These two books were essential to programmers and
                                          designers who used the PDP-11. I'm glad MARCH is able to exhibit
                                          these. While fragile after almost 40 years, and must be handled with
                                          care, now they can be read and enjoyed by visitors to the Exhibit.

                                          Herb Johnson
                                          retrotechnology.com
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