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A history lesson.


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Tyger

Tyger

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AN/FSQ-7

This is a machine that was conceived in 1949, design and construction began in 1953, the system was fully in place by 1963, it was operational until 1983. The SAGE air defence system was centered around the AN/FSQ-7, the central computer that directed fighter aircraft toward potential enemy targets.

It clocked at 75,000 operations a second, had no coprocessor, was fed information from several radar sites and operated about 100 control consoles. To put this in some perspective, only ten years earlier the fastest digital machines, binary machines built under the guidance of the mathematician Norbert Weiner, used card type telephone relays and only had 100 operations a second. Later the first Pentium microprocessors would run at 75 million operations a second and had coprocessors built in.
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