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A new approach to digital measurements of angular velocity for control applications is discussed. An optical transducer is described which provides a pulse rate. The pulse period is measured and the division of time is achieved by either a general purpose or a special purpose processor. Since sampling intervals are small, measurements are available in digital form almost immediately. Other advantages include the capability to measure transient angular velocity characteristics and the accurate measurement of angular velocity near zero. With modifications the system can be transformed into an accelerometer.