[SIGCIS-Members] "CSIRAC: Last Of The First" available in PDF

Allan Olley allan.olley at utoronto.ca
Tue Oct 13 12:28:11 PDT 2015

 	I just wanted to note that the paper by Bromley in an earlier form 
is found at the university of Sydney as a scanned in technical report 
from 1985. 
It lacks photographs and lacks some final changes one finds in the 
version that appear in Last of the First but as far as I can tell is 
substantively the same (as a scan of a printed/typed document it lacks 
much of the elegance of the book form).
 	People may find this a more wieldy version or of interest to 
track changes.
 	I was directed to it by a referees report back in 2010. In this 
form it has (according to Google) been cited by myself, Doron Swade, and 
most importantly Haigh, Priestly and Rope in their recent reassement of 
the stored program concept. Those are the only citations of it I've ever 
noted myself.
 	I have a copy of Last of the First and I think I noticed that the 
Bromley paper was in there but failed to think much more about it at the 
time or note any changed etc. I had already read the 1985 version at that 


Yours Truly,
Allan Olley, PhD


On Tue, 13 Oct 2015, Brian Randell wrote:

> Hi:
> I note that this book contains an excellent paper by the late Allan Bromley, “The
> Origin of the Stored Program Concept”  on pp. 87- 96. This paper - which I do not
> recall ever having seen before - is one of the, if not the, best accounts of this
> concept that I’ve come across.
> Cheers
> Brian Randell
>       On 13 Oct 2015, at 03:00, Justin Zobel <jzobel at unimelb.edu.au> wrote:
> CSIRAC, one of the first computers built, was documented in the book the
> Last Of The First (McCann and Thorne, 2000), a comprehensive overview of the
> machine itself, its history, and how it was used. This book, published by
> the University of Melbourne, has just been made freely available as a PDF
> from http://collections.museumvictoria.com.au/items/2155137.
> Originally designed and built in Sydney as the CSIR Mk1 in 1947-49, it was
> one of the first few stored-instruction computers, and as far as we know is
> the oldest computer that is still substantially intact; it is a permanent
> exhibit at Museum Victoria in Melbourne, Australia. It was relocated to
> Melbourne in 1955 and relaunched as CSIRAC in 1956, where it operated until
> 1964. Since then it has been preserved and documented by a dedicated team,
> including several of its original users; over the last decade, the core of
> this team was Judith Hughes, Jurij Semkiw (the engineer who assembled it on
> arrival in Melbourne in 1955), John Spencer (dec. 2014), and Peter Thorne.
> The Melbourne Museum maintains information about CSIRACat http://museumvictoria.com.au/melbournemuseum/whatson/current-exhibitions/csira
> c/. You can also read about CSIRAC on our web
> pages, http://www.cis.unimelb.edu.au/about/csirac/ – and you can listen
> to examples of the very first computer music, played by the CSIR Mk1 in a
> public exhibition in 1951.
> Justin Zobel
> Head, Department of Computing & Information Systems
> University of Melbourne
> _______________________________________________
> This email is relayed from members at sigcis.org, the email discussion list
> of SHOT SIGCIS. Opinions expressed here are those of the member posting and
> are not reviewed, edited, or endorsed by SIGCIS. The list archives are
> at http://lists.sigcis.org/pipermail/members-sigcis.org/ and you can change
> your subscription options
> at http://lists.sigcis.org/listinfo.cgi/members-sigcis.org
> --
> School of Computing Science, Newcastle University, Newcastle upon Tyne,
> NE1 7RU, UK
> EMAIL = Brian.Randell at ncl.ac.uk   PHONE = +44 191 208 7923
> FAX = +44 191 208 8232  URL = http://www.cs.ncl.ac.uk/people/brian.randell

More information about the Members mailing list