Category Archives: Events

1914-2014 : 100th Anniversary of the Kleinschmidt Teletype.

Edward Kleinschmidt is the only inventor we know that had his own lab in the 19th century and still lived to see the Apple II.    He was 101 years old when he passed in 1977.

But how come it took so long that only he made the journey with his amazing tech?   I would argue that the mathematical science developed to help win WWII and the science of the cold war developed to land on the moon actually slowed down the process of innovation.

Conrad Zuse laughed at the prospect of using vacuum tubes.   Conrad Zuse invented his first Z1 computer using telephone relays and old movie film for storage.  An example of the Simon 1 relay computer can be seen in the Computer History Museum.

After looking at nearly all tech from electric razors to industrial robots I find that communication companies have been the driving force behind innovations like Kleinschmidt’s  teletype.   The path was not a straight one with dead ends like the 30-ton mainframes, Viatron “microprocessor”  and  Cray 4 .

Sorry UNIVAC fans but the 30-ton 1105 (in our collection – 29.99 tons) was absurd compared to  the ABC Computer and the Z1.     If 40’s transistor tech was properly evaluated, computers would have never grown as large as the ENIAC.

Claude Shannon’s “mathematical theory of communication” wins the day for the the modern PC.  He was first to expose the benefits of  non-analog systems and use the term “bit”.

Here is our 100 year old Kleinschmidt teletype.  Plutarch’s parallel tech history might include this CCS  Teleswitcher store and forward message switcher from 1971.  This British black box used the PDP-8 as a back-end processor.  It only sold a few installations perhaps because of its $100K price.

Both are notable for their small compact design.   Contrast that with the larger than necessary footprints of the UNIVAC 9200 and IBM 370.

TI celebrates 1973 Microprocessor patent with gold version of Datamath.

Just when we thought collectibles coming out of Texas in 2014 couldn’t get any better comes this gold version of the TI Datamath calculator made in 1973.   Held by a Dallas man for nearly 45 years and still sealed in original factory plastic wrap.   TI made a practice of special Dallas distributions of the Datamath.    This is one of the rarest and most perplexing of any TI calculator ever discovered.   It has a serial number and label consistent with other examples in the online Datamath Museum.


TI pioneered the calculator on a chip TMS100 in 1971 and was awarded a patent for first single chip microprocessor although microcontroller is a better description of the design.    As to kick sand in the face of Intel 4004 fans calculator firm Busicom replaced the Intel chipset with a single TI chip in subsequent versions of it’s business calculators.

Unfortunately this model has corrosive batteries that are also entombed in the original plastic wrap and will need to be addressed at some time.   I want to open this on this 50th anniversary of the Datamath in 2022.