Help Identifying RAM Chips

From: William Donzelli <>
Date: Thu Nov 6 18:10:21 1997

> No!

Can you be sure? From the early part of this century thru the 1960s (the
time in which information has leaked out or been declassified), military
electronics has always been way ahead of what the industry, or most of it,
saw. For example, I can look at a old Mk 13 gunlaying radar, built for the
U.S. Navy during the early 1940s. What this thing could do was way ahead
of what most engineers would think the cutting edge could do. Most would
simply dismiss the thing as fantasy. Later electronics, like spread
spectrum communications (incidently, invented by the most unlikely of
people) would have been regarded as a joke when the military was playing
with it in the 1950s. The whole SAGE system of the 1950-60s also was
"beyond belief" to "Joe E. Engineer".

Why should anyone believe that the 1980s were any different?

> the military had the best available technology of the time and only for
> applications that needed it.

They develop the best stuff.

> Actually much of military technology was super rugged and not
> always the most modern. The computer(s) for F16 fly by wire are not very
> exotic save for they are absolutely fault tolerent, after all an error
> there can kill the pilot and destroy the aircraft at the maximum or cause a
> mission abort at the minimum.

Yes, for mission/life critical applications, they tend to stick with good
old designs.
> I say this as in the 71-72 time frame I had a friend that was a computer
> hacker and was able to get the then surplus Minuteman missle computers.
> Compared to the PDP-8I we both knew it was terrible! All transistor, no
> core (it used a 65kw disk for all storage).

The Minuteman missle computers were not the cutting edge and not very
secret. After all, they did end up on the surplus market without requiring
demilitarization. Using a computer for Navigation was, to put it plainly,
nothing new.

William Donzelli
Received on Thu Nov 06 1997 - 18:10:21 GMT

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