First news of a commercially available thin-film memory was disclosed by Remington Rand's Univac division at the Eastern Joint Computer Conference. The new memory, with access times measured in nanoseconds, will be included in the Univac 1107 computer, for which orders are being taken on an 18-month to two-year delivery basis.
The memory consists of metal dots, a few millionths of an inch thick, vapor-deposited on a glass substrate. Connections are by etched, multilayer circuit grids placed on the dot array.
According to the Remington Rand announcement, the thin-film unit will form the control memory of the new computer. Additional storage will be by ferrite cores. Computer rental is estimated at $40,000 to $60,000 per month. (Electronic Design, Dec. 21, 1960, p. 12)
Thin-film memories found their niche—and held it for more than a decade—in military systems, where their ruggedness and nonvolatility made a great deal of sense. Well, there you have it for top news in the electronics industry during 1960. Here's wishing all of our readers a happy holiday season and a healthy, prosperous new year. We'll see you in 2001 with the top developments in electronics technology from 1961.