Give It Your Best Shot!

In the ’80s, computer science students worked on terminals like this one in Combs Hall’s subterranean “B7.” Professor Ernie Ackermann, Mary Washington’s first director of academic computing, said that back then the terminals were connected by wires to the main computer – a Prime (brand) 750. Mary Washington’s 750 was about the size of a built-in professional-style refrigerator – much taller than the average man and double his width. An upgrade from the college’s Prime 500, the 750 had two to eight megabytes of memory and 1,200 megabytes of disc storage. “We also had a disc drive about the size of a washing machine,” Ackermann said, “and a large, noisy line-printer.” We think many of you will remember the terminals – but can anyone identify the mustachioed user? If you know this student, please leave a comment below or send an email with Get the Picture in the subject line to In the last issue, a 1964 Battlefield photo showed freshmen wielding “pots, … [Read more...]