[CQ-Contest] Techniques of Ye Olden Days -the first computer duped and scored entry

Jim Smith jimsmith at shaw.ca
Wed Sep 9 02:07:04 PDT 2009

1959?  OMG!

I still remember the first ever contest which I entered in 1958 (CQ WW 
SSB?) and, after it was over, the endless typing of the log with every 
entry starting with 10/25/58 (and variants for the following days).  The 
pain of doing this was so intense that, when writing this, I didn't have 
to consult any old records to come up with the date - it's emblazoned on 
my memory due to the constant repetition of typing it.

Why type the date on every line?  I knew nothing about contesting and, 
being young and naive, figured if I didn't show the date for a 
particular Q it wouldn't count.

Hey, apart from being young and ignorant, I must be a natural as I won 
it for my call area.  Not too hard in 1958, though, when your call is VE8FO.

73, Jim	VE7FO

Tod - ID wrote:
> The first computer duped and printed log I ever submitted was for the 1959
> I was a grad student at the University of Michigan. John Wilkinson [also a
> grad student and whose call has escaped from my memory] and I did a multi-op
> entry. After the contest ended John wrote computer program code so we could
> enter each line of the paper log, find the dupes, find the multipliers,
> compute the score and then print out the entry. The result was a very neat
> submittal compared to the paper log entries we had done previously.,
> Electronic, digital computers  were very expensive. Usually they were only
> found in very large company accounting departments, government  labs or in
> research projects at very large, high tech Universities . Finding a
> computer, knowing how to write code for it {in machine language because
> there was no FORTRAN, BASIC or in many cases not even an Assembly Language
> compiler} and persuading the 'owner' of the computer to give you precious
> computer time to debug the program and make the data entry and results
> processing run for an non-research project was very challenging.
> John and I felt we probably were making a 'first ever' type of contest log
> submittal.
> Much to my surprise when I asked ARRL HQ about their reaction to our
> "historic" submittal they casually said "Oh yes, we have been getting of few
> of such entries for the past several years."  It would be interesting to
> find out who actually made the very first computer duped and scored entry.
> It must have occurred some time after 1954 I would think? 
> Tod, KØTO
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