Roger Riordan: Career

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Poking at the Pasta (Learning to use a computer in 1966)

For some years I was a member of the Melbourne PC Users Group.

In the June 2011 edition of their magazine 'PC Update' member Gordon Wolf indulged his memories of computing in 1986 (25 years earlier) in the article “Poking at the Past”. This prompted me to write about my memories of learning to compute in 1966. I called my article “Poking at the Pasta”. This is a transcript of the article, which was published in the August 2011 issue of PC Update.

I had first met a computer in about 1958. George Kovarik (the head of my section) was trying to develop a program on CSIRAC (the extremely primitive first CSIRO computer) which was then residing in the basement of the Physics School at Melbourne University. He took me in to see it one afternoon, but it was in it's preferred state, which was 'Down', so I never saw it run and he never managed to make it do anything useful.

When I was at Berkeley in 1965 moderately useable computers were just coming in, but I did not take the opportunity to try to use them.

(Sites/AAB/To enter/pcudaug11.pdf)

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 © Roger Riordan 2004-2019

Poking at the Pasta

Learning to program