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Comment Oh well (Score 0) 150

I use it a lot to share design info. But there should a way to work offline while the "cloud" sorts itself out. Of course, synchronizing after is going to be a nightmare. Eh, better just let it be inaccessible for a while.

Comment Re:Lacked the barest of computer aids? (Score 1) 221

The IC used in the AGC was a NOR RTL gate commercially available at the time.

In the early 1960s there was at least one hobby magazine of the "Mechanics Illustrated" variety that showed how to build your own solid-state radio out of one of these RTL logic gates. This means these gates weren't the exotic parts you think they were.

A RTL gate is basically a pre-biased network of bipolar transistors and can be used in the linear mode... You can still get these today at digikey, look for what they confusingly call a digital transistor.

I mean, you people would argue with NASA itself.

They picked an IC that was already available in large quantities! They say so themselves! I mean what else can I do to convince you? NASA used EXISTING OFF THE SHELF COMMERCIAL PARTS THAT ALREADY EXISTED. And the IC was *obsolete* by the time Apollo 11 landed on the Moon! Why? Because commercial and industrial markets were already WELL underway on the digital computer path, without NASA, and without space!

Comment Re:Lacked the barest of computer aids? (Score 1) 221

Yes, I think a big problem when discussing subjects is defining the terms of the discussion. I believe that computers existed in the 1960s and were used to assist the design process. I also believe NASA didn't invent computers as computers already existed before, and even in the early 1960s there was already a private sector computer industry that had nothing to do with space. NASA did use many computers, yes, a lot of them were commercial machines of the 360 variety.

Comment Re:Lacked the barest of computer aids? (Score 1) 221

Good, all I ever said was that is was a certain subset. We agree. As for the mythology, it usually reduces to "NASA invented everything because we went to the Moon". Most people don't think it through that far, but yes, there is a TREMENDOUS amount of mythology around NASA and the Moon landings. Not that they happened, they obviously did, but to put it simply: many people think going to the Moon led to all kinds of technologies.

The way I see it is that all kinds of technologies LET us go to the Moon. Everything was there in embryonic form, whether it was from WWII progress, or just the normal course of human development through curiosity, talent and business needs, BEFORE.

Look at the company called BBN. They pioneered a lot of early computer work, but judging by what people are saying here, they never used computers. Look, someone had to be first, and you can't expect it to be at the same level as now, but if you are using computers to solve equations, even if you are just entering the problem in punch cards and the program runs overnight as a batch process, and you get the result back as a ASCII printout, it's still computer assisted design.

OK, so NASA got to spread tons of money around to other companies to develop technologies. Sure, NASA even invented a few new things here and there. But to think that people before were just stupid and no one was using computers is just foolish. Plenty of computer work was being done in the 1960s without NASA.

Comment Re:Slide rules, not computers [Re:Lacked the bare. (Score 0) 221

Absolutely false, every one of your statements. YOU should go grab a book about the 1960s. Just because clerks and people still had paper bank books doesn't mean computers weren't used to crunch numbers... I had paper bank books in the 1980s, does that mean banks had no computers in the '80s? The first hard drive in the 1950s was called RAMAC. You know why?

Random Access Method of Accounting and Control

IN 1956.

First of all, we need to define what I mean by designing parts on a computer. Were they sitting in front of personal computers with a mouse, color graphics, stereo sound and brazilian tranny porn? No. But are you claiming they never ever used computers to run numerical simulations for critical parts?

You ever hear of Messier Dowty? This is a company in Quebec that built the landing gear for the LEM. Guess what they used to help design them? Early computers and software at the Polytechnique.

If you ask a computer to solve an equation that's needed to help guide the design of a part, what is that but computer aided design? So sorry it was all on punch cards. Still a computer.

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