79 chars or more?

Roy Smith roy at panix.com
Wed Aug 18 13:57:18 CEST 2010


In article <QKOao.53872$GQ5.12210 at hurricane>,
 "BartC" <bartc at freeuk.com> wrote:

> >> Remember, the old hardcopy terminals used to produce 132-character-wide
> >> listings.
> >
> > Those of you who think "old hardcopy terminals" did 132 wide obviously
> > don't remember the ASR-33 :-)
> 
> ASR33s I think might have been 72 columns wide (and punched cards had a 
> similar restriction).

Yeah, I was trying to remember if it was 72 or 80.  Hmmm, looks like 
you're right, it *is* 72 (http://www.pdp8.net/asr33/asr33.shtml).  

Punched cards (at least the common ones used by an 029 or 129 punch 
machine) were 80 columns.  The 72 column restriction was an artificial 
one imposed by some programming languages such as Fortran.  Columns 
73-80 could be used to punch a sequence number, so that if you dropped 
your deck, you could re-assemble it by running it through a card sorter.

> However, lineprinter output was more likely to be 132 columns.

Yeah, but I wouldn't call a line printer a "terminal".



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