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Issue No.02 - April-June (2003 vol.25)
pp: 62-75
Zbigniew Stachniak , York University, Canada
ABSTRACT
<p>MCM/70, manufactured by Micro Computer Machines (MCM), was a small desktop microcomputer designed to provide the APL programming language environment for business, scientific, and educational use. MCM was among the first companies to fully recognize and act upon microprocessor technology's immense potential for developing a new generation of cost-effective computing systems. This article discusses the pioneering work on personal microcomputers conducted at MCM in the early 1970s and, in particular, the making of the MCM/70 microcomputer.</p>
CITATION
Zbigniew Stachniak, "The Making of the MCM/70 Microcomputer", IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, vol.25, no. 2, pp. 62-75, April-June 2003, doi:10.1109/MAHC.2003.1203059
REFERENCES
1. An excellent source, used here, for computer development from 1945 to the late 1990s is P. E. Ceruzzi, A History of Modern Computing, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1998. Ceruzzi's volume of pre-1945 "computing" history is also recommended: P.E. Ceruzzi, Reckoners: The Prehistory of the Digital Computer, from Relay to the Stored Program, 1935-1945, Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1983.
2. An excellent source, used here, for computer development from 1945 to the late 1990s is P. E. Ceruzzi, A History of Modern Computing, MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1998. Ceruzzi's volume of pre-1945 "computing" history is also recommended: P.E. Ceruzzi, Reckoners: The Prehistory of the Digital Computer, from Relay to the Stored Program, 1935-1945, Greenwood Press, Westport, Conn., 1983.
3. "Bare-Bones and Stand-alone Microcomputers to Bow," Electronics, vol. 46, no. 11, 24 May 1973, p. 130.
4. G. Sideris, "Microcomputers Muscle In," Electronics, vol. 46, no. 5, 1 Mar. 1973, pp. 63-64.
5. B.J. Bleackley and J. LaPrairie, Entering the Computer Age. The Computer Industry in Canada: The First Thirty Years, The Book Soc. of Canada, 1982, p. 118.
6. Interview with Mers Kutt, Toronto,6 Mar. 2001.
7. J. Chevreau, "The Third Coming Of Mers Kutt," Report on Business Magazine, Nov. 1985, pp. 110-115.
8. K.E. Iverson, A Programming Language, John Willey&Sons, 1962.
9. See Kutt Systems Inc., Certificate of Incorporation, Ontario Ministry of Consumer and Commercial Relations, Toronto, 28 Dec. 1971 (file number 251340).
10. Interview with Gordon Ramer, Toronto,27 Mar. 2001.
11. Interview with AndréArpin, Kingston, Canada,10 Apr. 2001.
12. P.J. Friedl, "SCAMP: The Missing Link In The PC's Past?" PC Magazine, Nov. 1983, pp. 190-197.
13. From Micro Computer Machines Inc. sales records, 1975.
14. "Kutt Returns with Micro Computer Ltd.," Canadian Datasystems, Mar. 1973, pp. 58 and 81.
15. "Mers Kutt Is Back with Minicomputers," Canadian Datasystems, Aug. 1973, p. 13.
16. See "Computer Operates with Calculator Ease," Machine Design,29 Nov. 1973, p. 14; "Suitcase-Sized Computer,"The Toronto Star,27 Sept. 1973, p. C8; "Kutt Takes Wraps Off New Minicomputer,"Canadian Datasystems,Oct. 1973, p. 49; "A Small Computer That Can Operate By Itself Is Shown,"The Wall Street J.,28 Sept. 1973, p. 3; "Micro Computer Machines,"Financial Times,1 Oct. 1973, p. 24; "Timing May Be Right for New Computer,"The Financial Post,6 Oct. 1973, p. 44; M. Weinstein and D. Leavitt, "APL-Dedicated Microprocessor Has 16K Memory, Weighs 20 Lbs,"Computerworld,10 Oct. 1973, pp. 1-2; and T. Wiseman, "APL-Compatible Devices Lead New Products at Canadian Show,"Computerworld,7 Nov. 1973.
17. From MCM/700 promotional brochure, Micro Computer Machines Inc., 1974.
18. From MCM/70 Desk Top Computer promotional brochure, Micro Computer Machines Inc., 1973.
19. Interview with JoséLaraya, Toronto,13 Sept. 2001.
20. J. Morgan Smyth, MCM/70 User's Guide, Micro Computer Machines Inc., 1974, p. 243.
21. In 1973, D.G. Moffat and M.A. Jenkins attempted the development of an APL interpreter for the PDP-11/45 and PDP-11/50 minicomputers. See Proc. 5th Int'l APL Users' Conf., APL Technical Committee, 1973, pp. 19.1-19.5. However, according to Jenkins (private communication, 2001), their project didn't advance past the experimental stage and the interpreter wasn't commercially available.
22. From MCM/70 Desk Top Computer promotional brochure, Micro Computer Machines Inc., 1973.
23. MCM Media/Press Release issued in Boston, 28 Sept. 1973.
24. Ibid. See also "Mers Kutt Shows His Portable Computer," CIPS Computer Magazine, Nov. 1973 p. 9.
25. D. Thomas,Knights of the New Technology: The Inside Story of Canada's Computer Elite, Key Porter Books, 1983, p. 171. See alsoHow to Use DYNAMO,Dynalogic Corp., 1977.
26. Daniel Pimienta related this information in a private communication, 2001.
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