[TUHS] Reaction to the 3B2 at Bell Labs

Warner Losh imp at bsdimp.com
Mon Nov 28 02:59:10 AEST 2022

On Sun, Nov 27, 2022, 9:11 AM Ron Natalie <ron at ronnatalie.com> wrote:

> . But everyone knew what the J stood for. The 3B2 served as a doorstop.
> Shades of the jerq terminal.    The J prefix persiste in the code long
> after the nickname was quashed.
> Being in charge of the Rutgers computer center, we were gifted a lot of
> ATT hardware.   We had one 3B20 (now that was a pure piece of phone
> equipment, you shut it down by turning a switch inside and holding the
> button down until it twanged.   Just like putting an old 303 modem into
> loop back).   We also got three 3B5's (noted for the one installed in the
> New Brunswick computing room that got completely drenched when a pipe burst
> and kept on running) and countless of the 3B2s.    I chortled in that
> unless you were logged in as root, you couldn't work the power switch.
>  Yanking the cord out of the wall was still and option.

When I worked for The Wollongong Group, we had a 3b2, 3b5 and 3b20 for all
the networking products we had. The 3b20 was nice. The 3b5 wasn't
terrible.... the 3b2 was the only machine I've seen that I could visibly
see the characters appear one at a time over the telnet session for some,
but not all, programs. Those programs, iirc, used stdio, but the stdio on
the 3b2 didn't have buffering turned on...


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