• Early History of the Personal Computer
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  • A short history of PC power supply voltage rails

---3M --- Magnetic Media Maker, a history of the first four decades(1944...1985)---, by Charles L Alden. Seefor details.

An illustrated history of computers with over 50 rare photos.

A short history of PC power supply voltage rails - PlayTool

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That's when PC's power distribution fundamentally changed. The older PCs powered their chips by connecting them directly to voltage rails provided by the PSU. But the newer PCs started putting DC/DC converters onto the motherboard which took a voltage provided by the PSU and efficiently converted it into the lower voltage needed by the chips. Many of the early DC/DC converters converted 5 volts into the lower voltage. Presumably this was because the power supplies of the time delivered most of their power on 5 volts. But converting 12 volts instead of 5 volts makes the wiring much simpler because a higher voltage delivers the same amount of power by using a smaller current. Smaller current lets you use less wires and connectors to deliver the same power. Power distribution is much easier at higher voltages. The highest voltage provided by a PC PSU is 12 volts so that became the most common input voltage used by the biggest DC/DC converters. A modern CPU has its own converter on the motherboard which converts 12 volts to whatever voltage the CPU requires. Modern video cards also have their own converters on the card which convert 12 volts into the desired voltages. The CPU and video card tend to be the biggest consumers of power, when fully loaded, so a modern PSU has to provide most of its power at 12 volts. So in the old days you had a bunch of chips directly connected to 3.3 or 5 volts and that's where a PSU provided most of its wattage. But in a new computer the PSU provides most of its power at 12 volts and then various DC/DC converters throughout the computer convert it to whatever voltage is needed by that particular set of chips. The table below is a more modern 480 watt PSU. The maximum power available on 3.3 and 5 volts has increased a little but the bulk of the expanded wattage is provided on the 12 volt rail.

QWERTY Keyboard History - Invention of the ..

Claymon, D.
: How Came to be the First Recorder to MinimizeSuccessive Copying in Overdubs" by Ross Snyder. Early in 1957 Ampex Corporationdelivered the first multi-track professional audio recorder to be equipped witha scheme called Sel-Sync to the recording artist Les Paul. Paul nicknamed it TheOctopus, for its eight channels. It has become something of a landmark inrecording history, since it appears to have been the first tape recorder to makepossible performances consisting of many parts - these to be recorded not inreal time - now greatly reducing the compromise of quality that was formerlyimposed by the necessity of extensive successive copying of copies. This articlerecalls the invention of Sel-Sync.



presents oral history to complement the written history below in
Kittler, Geoffrey Winthrop-Young / Paperback: 344 pages (1999) / Stanford Univ Pr
A vital historical dimension to the current debates over the relationship between electronic literacy and post-structuralism, and the extent to which we are constituted by our technologies.

by Torbjorn Lundmark / Hardcover: 176 pages (March 2000) / New South Wales Univ Pr Ltd
The renowned typewriter expert's is sure to stimulate enthusiasm all over again, bringing you new and as yet unpublished insights into the origins of the invention itself in a detailed history of the machine.

The History of the Tablet PC - IGN
The market for electronic spreadsheet software was growing rapidly in the early 1980s and VisiCalc stakeholders were slow to respond to the introduction of the IBM PC that used an Intel computer chip. Beginning in September 1983, legal conflicts between VisiCorp and Software Arts distracted the VisiCalc developers, Bricklin and Frankston. During this period, developed Lotus and his spreadsheet program quickly became the new industry spreadsheet standard.

Chronological History of Commodore Computer ..

The original IBM PCs drew most of their power from two voltage rails: 5 volts and 12 volts. Their power supplies also provided -5 and -12 volts but those only delivered small amounts of power. They had a 5 volt rail because that was the voltage needed to power most of the standard silicon chips of the time. The 12 volt rail was used primarly to operate fans and floppy disk drive motors. The original PC PSU could deliver a maximum 63.5 watts most of which was on the 5 volt rail. As time passed, PCs included bigger, faster chips which increased the load on 5 volts. People also added new-fangled devices like hard disks and eventually CD-ROM drives so the 12 volt rail had to deliver more power too. But the 5 volt rail still continued to deliver most of the power because most of the power is consumed by the chips.

Computer History 101: The Development Of The PC

Chip technology improves by cramming larger numbers of smaller transistors onto the chips. As transistors shrink they need to operate on lower voltages. When the newer ATX standard was created, a 3.3 volt rail was added to power the newer chips. So a PC of the time had a mix of 3.3 volt and 5 volt chips directly connected to their respective voltage rails. The table below shows the rail sizes from an old 300 watt ATX PSU. Most of the wattage is delivered on the 3.3 and 5 volt rails. It also has a fairly powerful 12 volt rail for computers with multiple disk drives.

A detailed history of the processor - PCMech

Spreadsheets have been used by accountants for hundreds of years. Computerized or electronic spreadsheets are of much more recent origin. Information Systems oral history and some published newspaper and magazine stories celebrate Dan Bricklin as the "father" of the electronic spreadsheet. In 1978, Harvard Business School student, , came up with the idea for an interactive visible calculator (see email from ). Bricklin and Bob Frankston then co-invented or co-created the software program VisiCalc. We can look back and recognize that VisiCalc was the first "killer" application for personal computers.