30 years of QNX: Breaking the 6 MHz barrier

In the Fall of 1984, QNX Software Systems published its first newsletter. By today’s standards, the headlines, which announce support for local area networks and IBM ATs, sound ho-hum. But in 1984, these announcements fell into the wow category. The AT, in particular, had just arrived on the market, boasting a "supercharged" 6MHz processor.

To younger readers, a 6MHz clock speed may sound painfully slow. It seems IBM thought so too, because they eventually introduced a model that clocked in at a blistering 8 MHz. :-)

Despite the antediluvian processor, the AT version of the QNX operating system was still capable of supporting 11 simultaneous users via modems and terminals. Cool, that.

Click to enlarge.

BTW, QNX still publishes a newsletter, written by yours truly. To subscribe, click here.


Phil Green said...

Looks like it would be at some later date that the newsletter would be produced on said IBM PC AT or descendent? :-)

I remember pouring over the assembly code for the AT BIOS as IBM published it and I believe distributed it with the computer.

Paul N. Leroux said...

Yeah, good question re the production quality. I assume they used a daisy wheel printer powered by gosh knows what. My favorite sentence? The one that mentions "full-screen editting". Didn't they have spellcheckers on QNX in those days?

Not that I haven't committed greater typographical sins...

Bill Flowers said...

The spelling mistakes were mine! 30 years later and I still try and spell editing with two t's.

The text was written under QNX and printed on a Daisy wheel printer (one really made by Daisy), then hand cut and pasted by yours truly. No, I didn't have a spell checker available.

Paul, I don't have a copy of that issue anymore. Can you copy it and mail it to me, or scan and email?

Paul N. Leroux said...

Hi Bill! I'm pretty sure I can dig up a copy -- the image used in this blog post was scanned a couple of years back.

Do you still have my email address? (I would try sending it to you via Facebook, but my Facebook account is being extremely uncooperative.)

- Paul

Bill Flowers said...

Sorry Paul, I've lost your email. And I don't know if you have mine. Frustrating!

I know how to solve this. It is my first name at the domain I use for this blog entry. Any spamming robots smart enough to parse that and put it together deserve to flood my inbox!