13
May
13

Old Computer Books

Unfortunately I’ve been rather sick the last two weeks with glandular fever, and so I haven’t really been able to post anything. Fortunately I’m starting to feel much better, but I find myself unprepared!

So today I’m being lazy and just showing some photos of some books I recently acquired.

The University I work for recently had a big clean out in the main IT building. They were offering a number of their old computer books for free to both staff and students alike. I found some interesting books in amongst the more modern ones. There were a number of books for programming in Pascal and a set of manuals for Borland Turbo Pascal 6.0. This was good for me as I have the old Turbo Pascal 6.0 software (and have been using it for some time) and having a manual with more detail than the online help has proven to be quite useful. I also found a Fortran book (by Microsoft) which may be interesting reading as I’ve never programmed in Fortran before.

There are also a number of old books documenting old DEC hardware such as the PDP 11 processor and a few with more system specific information. I’ve never owned or used such hardware as it was a bit before my time in computing, so reading these books should be interesting. I had heard programming for the PDP 11 was interesting and sometimes frustrating.

Finally I got three books about micro computers of the early eighties and a CP/M guide book. Again most of the machines talked about in the books are before my time, so this will most likely also be some interesting reading!

Some photos of the books follow.

Turbo Pascal Manuals

Turbo Pascal Manuals

DEC books

DEC books

Programming Books

Programming Books

Mystery Machine!

Mystery Machine!

Microcomputing handbooks!

Microcomputing handbooks!

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4 Responses to “Old Computer Books”


  1. May 13, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    I have a few old programming books sitting around but when I do get the motivation to look at them they are nearly always outdated and I lose interest. I do however treasure my C, C++ and Linux books, for the most part they are still just as relevant.

    • May 14, 2013 at 10:40 am

      I know what you mean, I have a bunch of programming text books from university that I barely used during my degree, and that I haven’t read much of since! Mostly Java books. I don’t know that I’ll ever really get around to reading these books properly either, but they sure will look pretty on my book shelf until I do.

      I have a few books about OO methodologies that I read through properly when I was in my late teens, I read them through mostly because of how new and interesting the ideas in the books were at the time to me.

      I have already found the Turbo Pascal manuals quite handy, they have more information than the online help in the IDE has about important stuff. It’s completely obsolete now, but useful for when I’m writing something in pascal under DOS.

  2. 3 Mike Jones
    June 13, 2013 at 12:58 am

    The Mystery Machine is/was a KDF9 – a mid-60’s to mid 70’s ICL mainframe programmed in Fortran – for a time I worked in “the KDF9 building” (long after it the machine itself had left) .
    Take a look in on news:alt.folklore.computers for oldtime reminiscing (this now includes TurboPascal!)

    • June 13, 2013 at 1:34 am

      Wow, thats interesting! I didn’t realise I had a book from such an old system, that certainly is quite the find. It will certainly be interesting to read about.

      Fortran must have had quite the long lifespan if it was used on a machine that old! It’s still used today by many, and there are even a few modern compilers for it. I wonder how much the language has changed since the earlier versions on machines like the KDF9.


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