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Pragmatic problem studies predict gains in computation speeds in a variety of computational tasks when executed on appropriate problem-oriented configurations of the variable structure computer. The economic feasibility of the system is based on utilization of essentially the same hardware in a variety of special purpose structures. This capability is achieved by programmed or physical restructuring of a part of the hardware. Existence of important classes of problems which the variable structure computer system promises to render practically computable, as well as use of the system for experiments in computer organization and for evaluation of new circuits and devices warrant construction of a variable structure computer. This paper describes the organization, programming, and hardware of a variable structure computer system presently under construction at UCLA.