Punch card box, Cyber 3600/3200 system, containing one punch card, wood / paper / felt, maker unknown, used by CSIRO Division of Computing Research, Australia, c.1964
This object comes from the computer room of one of the CSIRO DCR facilities (given that it is from Bromley's collection there is a good chance that it comes from the DCR facility in the Unversity of Sydney established in the Division of Mathematical Instruments building (which became the Madsen Building and the Basser Department of Computer Science in 1970 or so))
It should be noted that a comment added to the list of reasons why the card reader might have stopped says "4. Superceded technology", which, given that it is probably a facetious comment, throws light on the culture at the DCR workplace.]
This object is part of a collection relating to the history and development of calculating devices assembled by Assoc Professor Allan Bromley of Sydney University, comprising mathematical instruments, slide-rules, mechanical and electronic calculators, electronic analogue computers, computer components, kit computers, education computers, and associated ephemera.
Allan Bromley was a lecturer and researcher at the University of Sydney Basser Department of Computer Science from 1978 until his untimely death in August 2002. He specialised in Computer Architecture, Computer Logic and in particular the History of Computing. He was regarded as the world authority on Charles Babbage's Calculating Engines (instigating the building of the Difference Engine No.2 at the Science Museum London) and the Ankithera Mechanism and had extensive knowledge of calculators, analogue computers, logic, stereopsis, totalisators, clocks and time keeping and mechanical engineering.
DCR ran the computing network that CSIRO set up on Pearcey's original instigation and then under the directorship of Godfrey Lance. It consisted of a Control Data3600 in Canberra and CD 3200 in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide