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Manual - CSIRAC Computer, Interprogram, University of Melbourne,1960 Object Reg. No: ST 046411

'User friendly' programming manual for the Automatic Electronic Computer, CSIRAC, 1960.

This manual is contained in a manila folder belonging to a CSIRAC user.

The folder contains a Programming Manual, Interprogram Manual and Course Notes.

The manual was written by Geoff Hill of the Division of Mathematical Statistics of the CSIRO and used in the Computation Laboartory of the University of Melbourne. It is described, on the front cover, as a "manual in English language for automatic programming."

The Introduction to the manual explains:
"The time required to learn to prepare a calculation for execution by the electronic computer, CSIRAC, is greatly reduced by the INTERPROGRAM system. The user writes steps of the calculation as commands in English language, using any convenient names for values arising in the calculation. The flexible INTERPROGRAM vocabulary can be used with little training and understood with even less. The computer translates INTERPROGRAM language into its own language and executes the required calculation. Use of the computer to construct its own program of operations is known as 'automatic programming'. . . . The system can be extended by increasing the vocabulary or by replacing the arithmetic system by one providing greater precision . . ."

The manual provides a detailed description of how to program CSIRAC. The Intyroduction includes some explanation of what is meant by programming:
"To 'programme the calculation' means to draw up a list of commands, each of which calls on an operation that the machine can perform and which together will do what is required. For this purpose the programmer will need to know which commands the machine can perform and how to organize these operations into a complete programme. It is sometime helpful, but not necessary, to understand the physical details of machine prganization ...
In many programmes, most of the commands are copied from previously tested programmes, which have been organized into a 'library' of routines."
Manuals and notes are bound together using metal clips in manilla folder
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Mr Eric Milkins
Discipline: Technology

More information

Tagged with: making history - csirac
Themes this item is part of: CSIRAC - a woman programmer's view, Information & Communication Collection, CSIRAC Collection
Primary Classification: COMPUTING & CALCULATING
Secondary Classification: Digital Computing
Tertiary Classification: manuals
Inscriptions: Handwritten on the front cover of the manila folder:
Programming Manual
Interprogram Manual
Course Notes
University of Melbourne

Handwritten at bottom:
E. Milkins
Creator: Geoff Hill - The University of Melbourne Computation Laboratory, Parkville, Victoria, Australia, 1960

Geoff Hill developed Interprogram.
User: University of Melbourne (The), Parkville, Victoria, Australia, 1955-1964

Many other people were users of Interprogram apart from University of Melbourne staff.
User: Mr Eric Milkins, Eltham, Victoria, Australia, 1955-1964

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