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Digital Equipment Corporation PDP-12

23/02/2016 Comments off

The PDP-12 was a 12 bit machine introduced in 1969. It sold for $27,900. The PDP-12 was designed as a successor to the LINC-8 and was compatible with LINC-8 software.


Programmed Data Processor (PDP) was a series of minicomputers made and marketed by the Digital Equipment Corporationfrom 1957 to 1990. The name “PDP” intentionally avoided the use of the term “computer” because, at the time of the first PDPs, computers had a reputation of being large, complicated, and expensive machines, and the venture capitalists behind Digital (especially Georges Doriot) would not support Digital’s attempting to build a “computer”; the word “minicomputer” had not yet been coined.[citation needed] So instead, Digital used their existing line of logic modules to build a Programmed Data Processor and aimed it at a market that could not afford the larger computers.

The various PDP machines can generally be grouped into families based on word length.

Members of the PDP series include:


The original PDP, an 18-bit machine used in early time-sharing operating system work, and prominent in MIT’s early hacker culture, which was to lead to the (Massachusetts) Route 128 hardware startup belt (DEC’s second home, Prime Computer, etc.). What is believed to be the first video game, Spacewar!, was developed for this machine, along with the first known word processing program for a general-purpose computer, “Expensive Typewriter”.


A number reserved for an unbuilt, undesigned 24-bit design.


First DEC-designed (for US “black budget” outfits) 36-bit machine, though DEC did not offer it as a product. The only PDP-3 was built by the CIA’s Scientific Engineering Institute (SEI) in Waltham, MA to process radar cross section data for the Lockheed A-12 reconnaissance aircraft in 1960.[1][2] Architecturally it was essentially a PDP-1 controlling[citation needed] a PDP-1 stretched to 36-bit word width.[3] Lire la suite…