The InfoWindow series 3476 is a 14-inch, flat screen, smudge-resistant, monochrome monitor that attaches to the IBM System/36, IBM System/38 and IBM AS/400 processors. The IBM 3476 14-inch monitor has an actual viewable screen size of 11.4 inches when measured diagonally. The IBM 3476 attaches remotely to these processors via the appropriate IBM 5294, 5394, 5494 and compatible remote control units.
This is the circuit board from a Sinclair Black Watch. Sinclair products were known for their cheap build quality in order to keep costs down. This philosophy of squeezing as much as possible from components can be seen on this circuit board.
The Commuter has the distinction of being the first portable IBM-compatible computer with an LCD display. It shows only 16 lines of text (80 characters per line), but it is still very useful. In 1985 it was upgraded to 24 lines of text.
An external monitor can be plugged into the connector on the back of the Commuter, and the LCD display can be removed entirely.
This monochrome terminal was introduced by Wyse sometime around 1987. It supported 80x26 and 132x26 text modes, and was available in green P31, amber P134, and white P188 phosphors. It used an Intel 8032 microprocessor and had 16KB RAM.
The Sinclair QL was released in the United States, initially through mail order only. US QLs featured the updated Psion software that had been released to owners in the UK, as well as additional RF shielding to comply with FCC regulations. It also featured standard D-sub connectors for the serial ports instead of the proprietary connectors used in the original model.
This expansion unit for the NEC PC-8001 computer enabled the use of up to two 5.25" floppy disk drives. The 'BE' suffix indicates that labels and software for this unit are localised for the British English market.
The Chatterbox was produced by William Systems and retailed for £50. It was supplied with a variety of leads to fit a number of popular computers; the included documentation also gave pinout information so you could wire your own interface. On top of the unit is a DIN socket for inputting simultaneous audio signals, output sockets for connection to a loudspeaker or amplifier, and a DIN socket to interface the Chatterbox with William Stuart's Big Ears speech recognition device.
The Chatterbox behaved as an output device — power could supplied from on-board your computer and the unit used no memory, apart from that required by the software the user would need to write. Comprehensive interfacing information was given in the documentation.
The sound of the device was basic — there were no facilities, either in hardware or software, to handle volume, filtering, pitch or rate.
The HP 9830A was the top model in the first generation of HP's 9800 range. The systems in the range were first described as programmable calculators and later as desktop computers. The 9830A, despite being labelled as a calculator, contains a basic interpreter in ROM.
Systems in this range can be seen as forerunners of desktop computers. These early systems were often marketed as 'calculators' to make purchasing easier for companies.
This is one of the original 7 prototype Acorn A4 Laptop computers. Kindly donated by Mike Hill.
The machine was later launched in June 1992 and it was their only portable computer. Reportedly based on the A5000 (or may be vice versa) the A4 has the footprint of a sheet of A4 paper (hence the name) and weighs about 3 kg. The A4 came with a rather fetching carry case with space for the external power supply, manuals and a mouse. The A4 has an ARM3 CPU clocked at 24MHz, 4MB RAM and a 640x480 16 greyscale screen.
The operating system (RISC OS 3.10) was located in the 2 MB ROM. The 9'' LCD screen could only display 14 shades of grey, but used a clever dithering system to make more shades apparent.
K/Board 84 keys with arrow keys CPU ARM 3 (with 4 KB of internal RAM cache) 24 mHz (internal CPU) and 12 mHz (bus) RAM 4MB ROM 2 MB Text: Max : 132 x 30 Graphics: 47 graphic modes, maximum 640 x 480 with LCD screen and up to 1152 x 896 with VGA screen Screen 14 shades of grey (LCD screen) Sound: 8 voices (stereo 8 bit) I/O Ports: VGA, Centronics, RS232 C, stereo sound, Mouse, Keyboard Drive: 3.5'' disk-drive OS: RISC OS Cost: £1395 (2Mb floppy version) up to £1895 (4Mb HD120 version)
The Research Machines 380Z (often called the RML 380Z or RM 380Z) was an early 8-bit microcomputer produced by Research Machines Limited in Oxford, England, from 1978 to 1985.
The 380Z used a Z80 microprocessor (hence the name) with up to 56 KiB of user RAM. When fitted with an optional floppy disk drive the system ran the CP/M operating system. The basic system came with a text-only monochrome video card, which could be enhanced with a high-resolution graphics board.
The 380Z was sold mainly to schools in the UK, with some also sold to industry. In 1979 a dual 8-inch disk system with 56 KiB of memory cost £3266, and a 16 KiB cassette-based system cost £965 (excluding VAT).
Research Machines 380Z Personal computer Research Machines Limited Released 1978 Discontinued 1985 Processor Z80 at 4 MHz Memory 64 KiB maximum (56 KiB usable) Media 5¼-inch or 8-inch floppy disk Graphics 320×192 pixels, 2 bits per pixel (optional) Operating system CP/M
The 380Z was packaged in a large, black, 19-inch wide, rectangular metal case containing the power supply, a number of printed circuit boards and the optional 5¼-inch floppy disk drives. Early versions were contained in a light blue metal case with a white front and only had a cassette interface; only a small number of these were made. Our unit is one those early versions. The keyboard was separate and came in a tough metal case.
The system used a passive bus architecture with no motherboard – all electronics were contained on a number of cards interconnected by ribbon cable. The only microprocessor offered was a 4 MHz Z80A.
The 1600SW is a widescreen flat panel video monitor from Silicon Graphics introduced in 1998. It won many awards after release and sold 54,000 units. It is notable for longevity, with used models still actively traded on eBay a decade later, despite the difficulty of adapting the monitor to run with modern video cards, due to the 1600SW's OpenLDI video interface.
Our 1600SW is boxed with all the original documentation.
The SWTPC 6800 Computer System is designed around Motorola’s outstanding 6800 microprocessor chip and its integral family of support devices. The basic system includes the following: 15 1/8” W x 7” H x 15 1/4” D chassis with cover, mother board, memory card with 2048 bytes of 8 bit static RAM memory, serial 20 Ma. TTY teletypewriter/RS-232 terminal interface card, microprocessor card featuring a ROM stored minioperating system, power supply capable of driving the system with a full 16K bytes of memory, assembly instructions, diagnostics and programming manuals.
The 6800 microprocessor chip used in the system is a full specification Motorola component featuring 8 bit parallel data processing, 16 bit — 65K address buss, 72 instructions with seven addressing modes, maskable and non-maskable interrupts, two accumulators, an index register, variable length stack, DMA Capability, 1.1 microsecond cycle time and TTL compatibility.
The Motorola mini-operating system ROM used in the system gives the user complete teletypewriter/terminal control the instant the system is turned on. The ROM used is a standard Motorola part and makes the system program compatible with other Motorola products. The mini-operating system features a tape load/dump routine, a memory and register examine and/or change function and an execute user’s program command.
In addition to the step-by-step assembly instructions included with the kit, there is a documentation package including Motorola’s M6800 Programming Manual plus our own 200 page loose-leaf notebook containing programming information and examples, diagnostic and game programs and an application form to join Motorola’s M6800 User’s Group.
The system has been designed using flexible plug-together construction on solder coated, doubled-sided plated thru hole circuit boards. The system boards are fully buffered with on board voltage regulators for minimum noise and maximum reliability. The processor is fed from a crystal controlled clock which simultaneously generates five independent baud rate clocks for selectable serial interface data rates. Any combination of up to seven optional serial or parallel interface boards may be plugged onto the system to interface the computer with external devices. These inexpensive interface options are also built around Motorola 6800 family chips and are actually programmable within themselves.
Date Introduced 1975 Dimensions 6 3/4 x 15 x 15 3/8 in. Manufacturer Southwest Technical Products (SWTP) Speed 980 KHz Memory Type Semiconductor Memory Size 4K Memory Width 8-bit Cost $395
Our unit together with the twin 5.25" disk drive unit was very kindly donated by David Parr who gave us the following notes for this machine:
The SWTP box is almost fully-populated with cards and RAM as it is an amalgamation of more than one system we used to have at CovUni. It contains a Microspeech speech synthesis card (I left you a copy of the documentation for that), which we used to program to make some Hawking-like pronouncements. It has two sockets on the top edge, one for audio output and the other for inputting sound to merge with the generated speech.
The box also contains a Digisector TV capture card, to which we used to connect the Sony b+w video camera I delivered in the brown suitcase. We could also connect a TV set to monitor what was happening, and the card would display on this a white dot at whatever pixel was being captured at any time. By programming it to capture a vertical row of pixels, a vertical white line would appear and sweep slowly across the TV screen from left to right, taking about 10 seconds in total. Because the card is American, the number of lines on a UK TV screen doesn’t match and so the white line didn’t quite cover the whole screen. A 10 sec scan time was ok for static objects but we used it mainly for Open Days when school children would visit, and they had to sit still for an unnaturally long time to have their pictures taken. In practice they often used to experiment, for instance switching position halfway through to get a front view and a profile in one scan !
The software we were initially supplied with was very simple, in Basic, so I wrote some quite large chunks of assembler code to improve the scanning procedure, perform picture enhancements and print the output in various formats. Initially we only had daisy-wheel printers so I just used the full-stop character to build up shades of grey for each pixel. The largest size I ever printed was about A2 (on fanfold paper) and that took three and a quarter hours ! Later we got dot-matrix printers, which improved things quite a bit. We also tried to broaden the use a bit, analysing images and producing histograms which could be used to distinguish different objects.
The box also contains a parallel card (used for a printer), two serial cards for VDUs, and a connector for a pair of floppy disk drives (we used to have upright 5” drives attached). The memory slots are full too, though I’m not certain how much is fitted – possibly around 32K"
This expansion board for the IBM PC allows the system's VGA video output to be looped back into the Win/TV-Prism card. Here the card can optionally scale and overlay a TV-compatible analogue RF video signal. The modified video image is then output through another VGA port to be displayed on the monitor.
This sound card from Media Vision connects using the 16-bit ISA expansion bus. As well as the standard audio in/out and game ports, it also has an internal connector to control a Panasonic CD-ROM drive.
This expansion card by SMC Networks plugs into a PC's 16-bit ISA expansion slot. It allows the user to connect to an Ethernet network using either an RJ45 modular jack; BNC connector; or 15-pin AUI connector.
A sound card for a 16-bit ISA PC. Uses the Analog Devices AD1846JP 'SoundPort' chip. Provides the standard audio output and game port connectors, as well as dual line-in ports. Internal connectors include a 40-pin IDE header (likely for connecting a CD-ROM drive), audio connectors for streaming from a CD drive, and a wave table header.
This expansion card by Modular Technologies allows you to view and capture analogue television broadcasts using a standard PC. It plugs into a PCI expansion slot and supports analogue RF or composite video inputs. It uses the Brooktree Bt848AKPF video decoder chip.
This expansion board was produced by Adaptec Inc. and connects to a computer's PCI bus. It allows for SCSI disk drives to be connected and managed in a high-availability RAID ('Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks') setup.
This dual format lightgun is compatible with the Sega Saturn and Sony Playstation consoles. It features configurable auto-fire and auto-reload with a flashing LED effect. It was produced by Logic 3 International Ltd.
The LIC-2001A 'Little Intelligent Computer' is an Apple II clone produced in Taiwan in the 1980s. It was sold in Japan with katakana symbols on the front of the keycaps, but was otherwise a normal QWERTY keyboard.
The Romboard '4' was produced by Vine Micros in January 1987. It plugs into the BBC Master's expansion ROM socket and is designed to provide up to four extra ROM sockets, plus read/write protection of the computers sideways RAM banks.
This modern expansion board for the BBC Master uses the Tube interface to add an ARM7 co-processor. It features:
ARM7TDMI processor at 64MHz
8kbyte unified cache to speed program execution
For internal use within a Master series or external use with the entire BBC Microcomputer family
Supports high speed SDRAM from 8Mbyte to 64Mbyte
512kbyte on board flash ROM (containing system software and BASIC)
Optional 4Mbyte external flash ROM
Optional serial EEPROM for parameter storage
Optional RS232 port and JTAG for debugging use
The coprocessor is supplied with a simple operating system installed, which repackages system calls (called SWIs) into the corresponding BBC Master compatible call and sends it across the Tube, as well as providing a handful of standalone calls and general program environment.
This peripheral was developed by the Bath Institute of Medical Engineering in 1991 to teach those with learning difficulties how to dial a telephone. It connects a standard telephone to a BBC Microcomputer and was marketed commercially by "Toys for the Handicapped".
RISC System/6000, or RS/6000 for short, is a family of RISC and UNIX based servers, workstations and supercomputers made by IBM in the 1990s. The RS/6000 family replaced the IBM RT computer platform in February 1990 and was the first computer line to see the use of IBM's POWER and PowerPC based microprocessors. RS/6000 was renamed eServer pSeries in October 2000.
The RS/6000 250 was a workstation/server released by IBM in 1993. In the sales manual for the system, IBM described it as follows.
'The IBM RS/6000 Model 250 is flexible and powerful, and performs well as either a graphics workstation or a server. Driven by a 66MHz PowerPC 601* microprocessor, it offers growth capability from 16MB up to 256MB of error checking and correction (ECC) memory, optional internal fixed disk up to 2GB, up to a maximum of seven SCSI devices on the SCSI bus, an optional 2.88MB diskette drive, an optional graphics adapter, and two 32-bit Micro Channel* card slots.'
The Compaq Professional Workstation XP1000 was released in 1999. It was priced at around $12,000. Windows IT Pro noted in their review that 'Compaq targets the XP1000 at users of high-end applications in the mechanical CAD, computer-aided manufacturing (CAM), computer-aided engineering (CAE), high-performance technical computing, geographic information systems (GIS), electronic design automation (EDA), and digital-content creation (DCC) markets.'
The Umax Pulsar, known as the Umax SuperMax S900 in the American market, was a Mac clone released in 1996. It was Umax's first Mac clone. Umax were the only company to acquire a Mac OS 8 license from Apple.
Several variants of the Pulsar were shipped with CPU speeds ranging from 150 to 250 MHz. Our machine is model H7VO T.
The Sun 386i was a hybrid UNIX workstation/PC compatible computer system. It was launched in 1988. It was based on the Intel 80386 microprocessor but shared many features with the contemporary Sun-3 series systems.
There were two variants, the 386i/150 and 386i/250, with a 20 or 25MHz CPU respectively. Our model is the 386i/250.
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