Apollo Guidance Computer Activities

AGC - Conference 1: Ramon Alonso's introduction

Apollo Guidance Computer History Project

First conference

July 27, 2001

Ramon Alonso's introduction

RAMON ALONSO: I'm Ramon Alonzo. I used to work for Eldon Hall in the halcyon days of Apollo. A couple of points of interest, first of all is that the instrumentation laboratory probably made a mistake, because they hired me out of Harvard.

And the architecture of the computer in those days, what in those days was called the Harvard architecture -- and we can go into that. That was the first and last computer I ever designed, and there were two other significant people involved. There were Al Hopkins and Herb Thaler -- 

But at any rate, that design was the result, and I'll give my brief history. First of all, the specifications were very scientific. As I recall there was a team, Ed Duggan, yourself, and others that went to North American, and you came back saying "They gave us a cubic foot. We have to fill it." So we had to fill a cubic foot. And then there are many other stories.

And what I've done since then, I have not designed another computer. I went and ran a test equipment company, designed lots of that, and went back to Draper Laboratories, and then became a management consultant, having found out that strategy pays a lot better than tactics.

Dan Lickly's introduction

site last updated 12-08-2002 by Alexander Brown