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Intel SIM8-01: A Proto-PC
January-March 2007 (vol. 29 no. 1)
pp. 34-48
Zbigniew Stachniak, York University, Canada
The SIM8-01 prototyping board was introduced by Intel in 1972 as a low-cost hardware aid for the development of applications involving Intel's 8008 microprocessor. This article traces the SIM8-01's development at Intel and analyzes its impact on the formation of the first wave of worldwide microcomputer activities.

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2. "Announcing a New Era in Integrated Electronics. A Microprogrammable Computer on a Chip!," Intel's advertisement in Electronic News,15 Nov. 1971.
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6. From the alternative, promotional brochure, Intel Corp., 1971.
7. Compare D. Frohman-Bentchkowsky, "ROM Can Be Electrically Programmed and Reprogrammed and Reprogrammed," Electronics,10 May 1971, pp. 91-95.
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9. E-mail communications with Hal Feeney, June–July, 2002.
10. E-mail communications with Wayne Pickette, Apr.–June, 2003.
11. MCS-8 Micro Computer Set—8008: 8-Bit Parallel Central Processor Unit Users Manual, Intel Corp., March 1973, p. 120.
12. E-mail communication with Torstien Lund, June 2003.
13. For a more complete list from Intel's MCM-8 program library, see MCS-8 Micro Computer Set—8008: 8-Bit Parallel Central Processor Unit Users Manual, Intel Corp., Mar. 1973, p. 44, and Micro Computer System Pricing, Intel Corp., May 1973.
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19. MF8008 Applications Manual, Microsystems Int'l Ltd.,Bull. 80007, 1974.
20. When introduced in 1972, the SIM8-01 was far too expensive for computer amateurs. By the time the hobbyists were ready to build their first microcomputers, the SIMs were discontinued and replaced by the Intellec series development systems—even less affordable to hobbyists.
21. E-mail communication with Jonathan Titus, Mar. 1999.
22. "Bare-bones and Stand-alone Microcomputers to Bow," Electronics, 24 May 1973, p. 130.
23. E-mail communication with Albert Yu, Nov. 2000.
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26. C.B. Silio and J.H. Pugsley, Microcomputer Software: SIM8 Monitor/Editor, tech. report no. EE 76–01 Electrical Eng. Dept., Univ. of Maryland, 1976.
27. J. Beitch Baron and D.E. Atkins, "An Educational Laboratory in Contemporary Digital Design," Proc. 2nd ACM Ann. Symp. Computer Architecture, ACM Press, 1975, pp. 225–231.
28. For further discussion of the Intel Intellec computers in relation to the minicomputer market of the 1970s, see R.K. Bassett, To the Digital Age: Research Labs, Start-up Companies, and the Rise of MOS Technology, Johns Hopkins Univ. Press, 2002, pp. 274–275. See also P.E. Ceruzzi, A History of Modern Computing, MIT Press, 1998, pp. 222–224, and M. Kane, Microprocessor Software Development Tools Have Come of Age, Intel article reprint AR–61, July 1978.

Index Terms:
microprocessor development system, microcomputer, personal computer, Intel 8008
Zbigniew Stachniak, "Intel SIM8-01: A Proto-PC," IEEE Annals of the History of Computing, vol. 29, no. 1, pp. 34-48, Jan.-March 2007, doi:10.1109/MAHC.2007.9
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