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o/a '77 



The following articles are reprinted solely as items of interest for the independent evaluation by members of 
A TSU. The opinions, statements of fact, or conclusions expressed herein are not those of the Association. 


As Part of NBS 

Bill Would Create Federal 
Standards-Making Institute 


By Edith Holmes 

Of the CW Staff 

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Senate bill 
that would create an independent govern¬ 
ment-financed standards board and a new 
Institute of Standards and Accreditation 
in the National Bureau of Standards 
(NBS) received strong support from the 
Computer & Communications Industry 
Association (CCIA) during hearings here 
recently. 

However, equally strong opposition to 
the Voluntary Standards and Accredita¬ 
tion Act of 1977, S. 825, was lodged by 
the American National Standards Insti¬ 
tute (Ansi). 

The lack of computer industry stan¬ 
dards costs the taxpayer “hundreds of 
millions of wasted dollars per year,’' 
CCIA President A.G.W. Biddle told the 
Senate Antitrust and Monopoly Subcom¬ 
mittee, chaired by the bill’s author, Sen. 
James Abourezk (D.-S.Dak.). 

Testifying on behalf of Ansi, the orga¬ 
nization’s executive vice-president, Don¬ 
ald I. Peyton, argued the bill would de¬ 
prive the American public of the volun¬ 
tary standards system by nationalizing it. 

Ansi views the creation of the National 
Standards Management Board and the 
new NBS institute as its obvious replace¬ 
ment as the national standards-setter, 
Peyton said. 

Rather than take the standards efforts 
in-house, the government should fairly 
enforce existing laws “which are totally 
adequate to provide oversight for vol¬ 
untary activity,” Peyton stated. Congress 
should encourage and support govern¬ 
ment participation in voluntary standards 
activities and government use of those 
voluntary standards which meet its needs, 
he added. 


More FTC Responsibility 

Besides establishing a standards board 
and an accreditation institute, the 
Abourezk bill would strengthen the Fed¬ 
eral Trade Commission’s (FTC) responsi¬ 
bility to see that standards are not used as 
anticompetitive tactics. This would be 
accomplished by providing a means of 
appealing FTC decisions where appropri¬ 
ate, a spokesman for the Senate subcom¬ 
mittee explained. 

The Secretary of Commerce would be 
given overall responsibility for standards 
efforts. Through the proposed NBS insti¬ 
tute, the Commerce Department could 
check out laboratories who come to it 
and ask to be accredited to test products 
for consumers and the government. 

One of the assumptions of the bill is 
that testing facilities like Underwriters’ 
Laboratories have become “the tools of 
the industries,” he noted. 

The NBS institute could develop stan¬ 
dards in the absence of private initiatives, 
according to S. 825. 

The bill further provides for U.S. gov¬ 
ernment participation in international 
standards efforts. 

Change of Heart 

Jordan Baruch, assistant secretary for 
science and technology at the Depart¬ 
ment of Commerce, appeared briefly be¬ 
fore the subcommittee to present execu¬ 
tive branch opposition to the bill. 

Abourezk, who had been informed by 
high-level Commerce Department officials 
that Baruch and the department as a 
whole supported S. 825, asked Baruch 
why his stance had changed. Staff mem¬ 
bers indicated the change was made on 
orders from the Office of Management 
and Budget (OMB). 

Abourezk, who wanted to know 







Baruch’s personal opinion about the bill, 
asked that he provide it, and Baruch said 
he would ask the White House for permis¬ 
sion to do so. 

Last week a subcommittee staff member 
indicated Baruch had provided.his “quali¬ 
fied” approval of the bill without indicat¬ 
ing why OMB had asked that he oppose 
it, 

During the hearings, the CCIA’s Biddle 
explained to subcommittee members that 
the lack of compatibility between main¬ 
frames makes it difficult for users to 
move easily from one manufacturer’s 
system to another’s. 

There is no institutional mechanism to 
encourage voluntary private-sector stan¬ 
dards bodies to act in any but their own 
self-interest, Biddle said, citing Ansi X-3 
committee contributions regarding a stan¬ 
dard to permit the interconnection of 
peripheral products to mainframes as an 
example. 

The Computer and Business Equipment 
Manufacturers Association (Cbema) has 
served as the secretariat of Ansi X-3 for 
several years,, and IBM is a key Cbema 
member, Biddle said in explaining the 
industry leader’s potential for influencing 
any standards-making process. 

“A mechanism must be developed and 
implemented to prioritize the develop¬ 
ment of those standards that will be most 
beneficial to users and to the nation,” 
Biddle said. “In our industry we have 
numerous standards dealing with how a 
magnetic tape reel should be labeled, or 
physically specified, as well as standard 
numerical designations for cities. 

“We do not, however, have standard 
higher level computer languages that per¬ 
mit a program written for one manufac¬ 
turer’s machine to be run without change 
on another’s machine,” he said. “Nor do 
we have standards for the efficient high¬ 
speed usage of computer/communication 
networks or standards for the intercon¬ 
nection of the various units of hardware 
and software that go together to make a 
computer system. 

The CCIA recommended Congress 
create a Computer & Communications 
Standards Board (CCSB), modeled after 
the Financial Accounting Standards 
Board (FASB), which would be under the 
full-time direction and control of a board 
of directors drawn from both the govern¬ 
ment and the private sector, including 
representatives from large and small pro¬ 
viders and users. 

The CCIA also proposed an addition to 
S. 825 which would require that stan¬ 
dards be developed for the interconnec¬ 
tion of devices made by different manu¬ 
facturers. 



Computer net\ 
conferences a 

By Don Wood 

Special to Minicomputer News 

NEWARK, NJ - Scientists around the na- < 
tion can now hold conferences without < 
leaving their offices, send electronically- : 
delivered messages to their colleagues from i 
hotel rooms and write, edit and submit 
journal articles from poolside. Using a 
minicomputer-based Electronic Informa- ' 
tion Exchange System (EIES), researchers 1 
in specialized disciplines can exchange i 
ideas and compare notes on a daily basis, i 
even if their colleagues are hundreds of 
miles away. < 

All they need is a terminal and access i 
to a telephone. By dialing a local number, l 
they connect with a nation-wide telecon- i 
ferencing network developed by Murry 
Turoff of the New Jersey Institute i 

Technology. j? S 1 

EIES is now being tested by more than < 
200 scientists under National Science 
Foundation support, but Turoff predicts 
that a third or more of all scientists will i 
use descendant systems within 20 years. 

Most current EIES users belong to i 

“invisible colleges” — informal groups of 
10 to 50 researchers all working in the 
same specialized field though widely sep¬ 
arated geographically. 

“The system itself may be viewed as a 
large common blackboard available to 

With a terminal and a telephone 
a scientist can set up a 
national conference. 


scientific users of the system regardless of 
their location or their preferred time of 
use,” Turoff said. Users communicate 
through four major modes — a private mes¬ 
sage system, a conference system, a bulle¬ 
tin and a personal notebook. Additional 


Reprinted with permission of Computerworld, 
July 11, 1977, Copyright 1977. 






twork allows daily research 
among scientists all over the country 


features can supplement these modes if 
the user desires. 

On the private message system, a user 
can send an “electronic letter” to any 
other individual or group. Incoming mes¬ 
sages are stored until the addressee signs 
a on the system, when he can retrieve them. 
The computer stores messages for about 
a week after delivery; if the recipient 
wishes a permanent copy, he can trans¬ 
fer it to his personal notebook. The sys¬ 
tem automatically notifies senders when 
messages are delivered. 

Most established groups have on-going 
conferences during which a conference 
moderator acts as chairman by encouraging 
participation, editing comments and keep¬ 
ing discussion relevant to the topic. 

Conferences may take several months 
to c olete, but participants can add 
coiK_mts whenever convenient for them 
(say, three in the morning). Users can re¬ 
view comments made since the last time 
they signed on the system, recall com¬ 
ments from any previous data, or search 
the on-going proceedings by keyword, 
name, and so forth. Normally, proceed¬ 
ings are limited to 300 comments, but 
the number may be adjusted if necessary. 
Either the author or the conference mod¬ 
erator may edit or delete outdated or ir¬ 
relevant comments. 

Any user can set up a temporary con- 
i ference to discuss a problem common to 
some sub-group. He then functions as con¬ 
ference moderator. Temporary conferences 
are generally limited to 50 comments. 
However, several participants can pool 
* their allocations if more space is needed. 

Each user group has a bulletin which 
serves as the group’s journal. Authors 
write and edit papers in their personal 
s- notebooks, then notify the bulletin editor 
when ready to submit their papers for 
publication. The bulletin editor chooses 


reviewers, who discuss the paper anony¬ 
mously with the author. After acceptance, 
the paper is published in the bulletin where 
any user can retrieve it. 

Members can also submit news or busi¬ 
ness items to the bulletin. The system 
automatically tallies votes on business 
items and displays results to readers. 

Users have a 50-page notebook for 
personal use. This is basically a personal 
file for storing correspondence, retaining 
copies of items, and writing and editing 
material such as conference comments or 
technical papers. Two or more users may 
merge their notebooks and a user can 
open portions of his notebook to others 


The system leads beginners 
through its features so that 
anyone can use it after 
30 minutes of instruction, 
Turoff said. 


for reading and writing or for reading only. 
Additional features of EIES include: 

• User Directory: users enter name, ad¬ 
dress, telephone number and brief descrip¬ 
tions of themselves and their interests. 

The directory can be scanned geograph¬ 
ically by name, profession, key word, zip 
code and area code. 

• Hal Zilog: users see Hal Zilog as a mem¬ 
ber of the system, but he’s actually a 
microprocessor. When fully developed, 

Hal will be on call for all users to do sim¬ 
ple terminal graphics as well as statistical 
and modeling routines. Also, users could 
request Hal to access a large data base 
somewhere, manipulate data, perform 
other chores and display results. 

• Pen Name: users select pen names that 
allow them to send messages or make 
comments anonymously if desired. 


• Coffee Break: Users can write jokes or 
funny stories and swap gossip much as 
they would during a face-to-face coffee 
break. Originally called Graffiti, the 
designers felt that name lacked dignity. 

• Text Editing: Users can prepare texts 
easily and quickly using this feature. 

Anyone can use EIES after only 30 
minutes of instruction, Turoff said. The 
system leads beginners step by step through 
the various communication modes and 
features. As users become more experi¬ 
enced, they can take advantage of the 
more advanced features and even write 
their own commands for operations they 
perform often. 

Turoff said EIES is cheaper than long 
distance phone calls and the U.S. Mails 
and its costs will drop as more users come 
online. For 300 users, the system costs 
about $8 per hour; with 800 or more 
users, costs drop below $5 per hour. 

EIES and descendant systems will have 
a profound impact on human communica¬ 
tions, Turoff predicts. The chief bottle¬ 
neck in making the system generally 
available is difficult access to terminals. 

But as terminal prices drop in the next 
few years, Turoff sees more and more 
people joining the system. Perhaps 
libraries will install terminals for public 
use; Turoff suggested. 

Newspapers may be delivered electroni¬ 
cally and magazines and journals will pub¬ 
lish hard copies only on specific demand, 
he added. 

The hardware heart of EIES is two 
Interdata 7/32 minicomputers, each con¬ 
nected via separate disk controllers to 
DD/32 dual disk systems with more than 
200 megabytes of capacity, Turoff said. 
Only one of the minicomputers is actually 
used to operate EIES; the other performs 
different functions, but can take over the 
system if trouble develops in the first. 


Reprinted with permission of Minicomputer News, June 3, 1977, Copyright 1977. 








RANK 


THE TOP 50 U.S. CO/MPANIES 
IN THE DP INDUSTRY 

Estimates for 1976 


COMPANY 


1 

International Business Machines 

2 

Burroughs 

3 

Sperry Rand 

4 

Honeywell 

5 

Control Data 

6 

NCR 

7 

Digital Equipment 

8 

Hewlett-Packard 

9 

Memorex 

10 

TRW 

11 

3M 

12 

Itel 

13 

General Electric 

14 

Automatic Data Processing 

15 

Computer Sciences 

16 

Mohawk Data Sciences 

17 

Data General 

18 

Electronic Data Systems 

19 

Management Assistance 

20 

Storage Technology 

21 

Data 100 

22 

Xerox 

23 

California Computer Products 

24 

Ampex 

25 

Bunker Ramo 

28 

Amdahl 

27 

Harris 

28 

Teletype 

29 

System Development 

30 

General instrument 

31 

Tymshare 

32 

Wang Laboratories 

33 

McDonnell Douglas 

34 

Dataproducts 


Telex 

36 

Raytheon 

37 

Perkin-llmer 

38 

General Automation 

39 

Batapoint 

40 

Sycor 

41 

Texas Instruments 

42 

GTE 

43 

Four-Phase Systems 

44 

Inforex 

45 

Tektronix 

46 

Wyly 

47 

Recognition Equipment 

48 

Informatics 

49 

Electronic Memories & Magnetics 

50 

Boeing 



DP 

U.S. DP 

DP 

REVENUES 

REVENUES 

REVENUES 

(% of total 

(% of total 

$M 

revenues) 

dp revenues) 

$12,717 

Wo 

50% 

1,630 

86% 

Wo 

1,430 

45% 

58% 

1,428* 

47%* 

45%* 

1,331 

98% 

66% 

1,100 

48% 

51% 

736 

100% 

62% 

335 

30% 

52% 

310 

90% 

58% 

295 

10% 

90% 

211 

6% 

80% 

189 

Wo 

90% 

185 

1% 

80% 

178 

95% 

90% 

165 

75% 

81% 

162 

100% 

43% 

161 

100% 

59% 

133 

100% 

95% 

123 

100% 

60% 

122 

100% 

75% 

120 

98% 

67% 

120 

3% 

100% 

116 

96% 

76% 

115 

45% 

53% 

107 

34% 

90% 

93 

100% 

75% 

92 

18% 

90% 

90 

50% 

90% 

85 

77% 

95% 

84 

22% 

80% 

82 

100% 

85% 

82 

85% 

55% 

77 

2% 

100% 

75 

88% 

75% 

75 

71% . 

74% 

74 

3% 

80% 

73 

21% 

75% 

71 

100% 

7( v 

68 

94% 

r 

67 

100% 



66 

65 

63 

63 

62 

62 

60 

59 

58 

55 



4% 

1 % 

100 % 

100 % 

17% 


92% 

10T 

6 ' 




ATSU COMMENT - Out of the top 50, the 
following eleven companies offer remote com¬ 
puting services, either themselves or through a 
related company: 

5. Control Data (Service Bureau Company) 

12, Itel (Multiple Access) 

13. General Electric (Information Services Div.) 

14 , ) Automatic Data Processing 

(ADP Network Services) 

15. Computer Science (Infonet) 

22, Xerox (Xerox Computer Services) 

31. Tymshare 

33. McDonnell Douglas (MCAUTO) 

46. Wyly (University Computing) 

48. Informatics (Data Services Division) 

50. Boeing (Boeing Computer Services) 


Reprinted with permission of Datamation, June 1977, Copyright 1977 by 
Technical Publishing Company, Greenwich, CT.