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Notes and Reflections on Books and Media

by Hannah Leitheiser

6J6

#6J6 #tubes #computer

Turing's Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe

George Dyson

2012

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2019-04-15

"6J6, which was the twin triode, had it not existed during the war and been widely used, I don't know what we would have used for a tube. Not only did the widespread use of 6J6 mean that it was available inexpensively, but it was found to be more reliable as well." - George Dyson , Turing's Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe (2012)

Unreliable tubes were a huge problem for early computers. The dual nature of 6J6 allowed 1, 0, and 'broken tube' to be distinguished. Although special computer tubes were designed, engineers found mass-produced tubes were more robust, and by factoring wide tolerances in circuit design they could be made to work.

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