I found a price list of HP 9100 items from Hewlett-Packard (Schweiz) AG dated April 1971 and was a bit surprised. At those times the price (including taxes) of an HP 9100B was 24’755.- Swiss Francs! Now I was curious to see how much money that was.Continue reading →
A strategy focused on quality is the best way companies can respond to competition. And surprisingly, an emphasis on quality is one of the most effective ways to control costs.John A. Young, President and CEO of Hewlett-Packard
Hewlett Packard was famous for their focus on quality. The following story found in the HP Measure magazine May/1971 illustrates that.
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Yesterday I stumbled across the article “Rechenmaschine oder Computer“. As the title indicates the article is in German and appeared in the blog of the Heinz Nixdorf MusemsForum (HNF). It provides some historical context and information about the HP 9100 calculator and its development. Two things have attracted my attention. Continue reading →
If you go back in computing history and search for the roots of personal computers you will for sure stumble across the HP 9100. However, most probably you will end up with the Olivetti Programma 101 which is recognized as the world’s first desktop computer commercially produced.
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On the forum of hpmuseum.org I’ve learned about the Elektronika T3-16 desktop calculator. It seems that this calculator is a reverse engineered HP-9100B. The electronics looks not very professional, a lot of wires, and the case looks edged and less stylish than the 9100B. Funnily it appears in a movie, however, I don’t understand Russian so I don’t what’s the story line. I’m wondering how many of these calculators were made? If anybody knows some details about this calculator please share the information with me.
Today I stumbled across a description of an HP 9100 prototype on the web site of The National Museum of American History. The prototype already looks quite similar to the final calculator. The keys are mostly the same, however, the keyboard layout differs slightly. It looks like the prototype has no magnetic card reader. Unfortunately, there is no picture showing the inside. According to the museum, it was a gift of the Hewlett Packard company. I wonder if it’s still working?
You wonder what a Reverse Polish Sausage looks like? Then you have to read this article on the Economist web site. It provides some historical information about RPN and also references the HP 9100A.
I’ve collected many HP 9100 manuals and would like to scan and share them. However, scanning manuals is a LOT of work, and without good equipment the results are often of minor quality. I did a little research and found Blue Leaf Book Scanning Service. That seems to be a good option, but I will have to spend quite some bucks. Continue reading →