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The Magnetic Disk Heritage Center (MDHC), whose mission is to make available to the general public the technical heritage of San Jose in data storage by preserving the legacy and history of the magnetic disk drive industry, is excited to have an original RAMAC magnetic disk drive on loan from IBM. In keeping with its mission, MDHC will explore the feasibility of restoring this historic data storage unit to some functional level of operation.
The first magnetic disk drive, the RAMAC (Random Access Method of Accounting and Control), was started in a small IBM laboratory at 99 Notre Dame in downtown San Jose in 1952. Magnetic disk data storage revolutionized the computer industry by making possible real-time on-line transaction processing that now includes information storage and retrieval over the Internet.
In 2002 the building at 99 Notre Dame, the site of the birthplace of magnetic disk storage, was declared a City Landmark, through the efforts of MDHC. The Superior Court of Santa Clara County is currently leasing the building and permitted MDHC to create a display in their lobby featuring the early disk drive activities that occurred there.
IBM employees who deserve special recognition for their efforts in bringing about this RAMAC restoration undertaking include Jack Grogan (Storage Technology Division) and Dave Bennet (Storage Systems Division).
The restoration project will involve students at Santa Clara University. Contributions to the MDHC charitable gift fund, recently established at SCU, are now being solicited for support of this activity. Other MDHC preservation plans include obtaining oral histories from pioneers in the field of magnetic disk storage as well as identifying historical artifacts for a future technical museum at 99 Notre Dame.
|Last updated: Tue Mar 4 19:41:29 PST 2003|