2021-01-06 17:17:25 UTC
They don’t fit in your pocket. But in their day, minicomputers were an
order of magnitude smaller than the room-sized mainframes that preceded
them. And they paved the way for the personal computers that could fit
in a bag and, eventually, the phones in your pocket.
16-bit minicomputers changed the world of IT in the 1970s. They gave
companies the opportunity for each engineer to have their own machines.
But it wasn’t quite enough, not until the arrival of 32-bit versions.
Carl Alsing and Jim Guyer recount their work at Data General to create a
revolutionary new 32-bit machine. But their now legendary work was done
in secret. Codenamed “Eagle,” their machine was designed to compete with
one being built by another team in their own company. These engineers
recall the corporate politics and intrigue required to keep the project
going—and how they turned restrictions into advantages. Neal Firth
discusses life on an exciting-but-demanding project. One where the
heroes worked together because they wanted to, without expectations of
awards or fame. And all three discuss how this story was immortalized in
the non-fiction engineering classic, The Soul of a New Machine by Tracy