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"The Works Records System" - a mainframe spreadsheet system developed at ICI in 1974

"The Works Records System" was a mainframe spreadsheet software developed at ICI in 1974 in Northwich, Cheshire, to provide a fully interactive system enabling chemical process engineers to design, set up and maintain their own spreadsheets using input data entered in rows and columns on a 3270 VDU. It allowed separately inputted formulae to link the cells by calculating the results for other cells. This mainframe system pre-dated "Visicalc" by 5/6 years.

The project was headed by Dr. Robert Mais assisted by Graham Johnson (both ICI) and was programmed by myself, Ken Dakin (freelance), Philip Lathe and Colin Done (ICI) entirely in IBM Assembly language. The transaction processor was CICS and the system utilized the database software ADABAS (plus BDAM for fast access data).

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