A Life in Computers

A trip to The National Museum of Computing at the weekend was a real trip down memory lane for me. You can read about our visit to Bletchley Park at a later date but I wanted to highlight some of the more significant computers that have featured in my life that were on show there. The dates are pretty loose as my memory is not what it once was!

Teletype (c. 1976)

I have written previously about how I encountered my first “computer” at secondary school. In fact this wasn’t a computer at all but basically a printer with a … Read the rest

The Evolution of Databases

iStock_000016066249XLargeOne of the beauties of a long career is that you get to see how things in your sector evolve over time. Being in IT is no different other than the phenomenal rate of change.

Nowhere is this more evident than in databases. When I started out in the late eighties I was a COBOL programmer working on hierarchical databases and specifically IDMSX on ICL’s VME platform. These databases worked on the basis of linked lists and you had to “walk” through a whole chain in order to get to the record you wanted.

Hierarchical databases were straightforward to learn … Read the rest