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Design of the B 5000 System

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2 Author(s)

Computing systems have conventionally been designed via the 'hardware' route. Subsequent to design, these systems have been handed over to programming systems people for the development of a programming package to facilitate the use of the hardware. In contrast to this, the B 5000 system was designed from the start as a total hardware-software system. The assumption was made that higher level programming languages, such as ALGOL, should be used to the virtual exclusion of machine language programming, and that the system should largely be used to control its own operation. A hardware-free notation was utilized to design a processor with the desired word and symbol manipulative capabilities. Subsequently this model was translated into hardware specifications at which time cost constraints were considered.

Published in:

Annals of the History of Computing  (Volume:9 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

Jan.-March 1987

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