The AT&T GNAT Terminal
The GNAT terminal just passed 30 years of age (Feb 10, 1980)!
I bought it at the Trenton Computer Fest in the mid 80s since it was cheap.
Happily I was consulting to AT&T at the time so I got the internal specs for it.
GN* was a series of General Network devices: GNOME router,
and perhaps the GNOT smart-terminal (famous from Plan 9).
The GNAT (General Network Access Terminal) was an AT&T prototype for an ADM3A clone
back when Teletype was making only expensive "smart terminals", so it never went into production.
It's a Z80 inside! It was joking called the Gary Nipper Advanced Terminal (for the designer).
I plan to scan the ledger size schematics another time.
Googling around found:
The Western Electric SPIDER System
is a Computer Aided Manufacturing (CAM) Network controlling and supporting manufacturing processes
at multiple locations. The hierarchical network interfaces with current
Computer Aided Design (CAD) Systems within Bell Telephone Laboratories
and Western Electric to complete the CAD-CAM link for new electronic switching systems.
new electronic switching systems.
The project acronym, SPIDER, stands for
Shared Production Interactive Data bases for Error Reduction.
This Computer Aided Manufacturing Network has been developed at the
Northern Illinois Works of the Western Electric Company in Lisle, Illinois.
This location is close to the Bell Telephone Laboratories Indian Hill Facility
which has the design responsibility for switching systems.
Northern Illinois Works was established to develop manufacturing facilities and methods
for new technology switching products for the Bell System.
As these new products pass through the development phase and demand increases
the manufacture of the product line is transferred to traditional production plants.
Currently, there are two other plants located in Dallas, Texas, and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma,
which are part of the CAM Network.
In addition to the manufacturing locations, two data centers are attached to the network.
The Warrenville Data Center services the Western Electric Switching Equipment Division,
and it is here where design information is initially received and processed by Western.
It is the primary data source for SPIDER.
The Kingsbridge Data Center supports time sharing applications for the corporation.
Some of these programs require 24 hour availability.
The link to the SPIDER Network is to provide system back-up for those applications.
Plan 9 from Bell Labs
is a distributed operating system that was
intended to be the successor to the Unix Operating System.
Obviously, it didn't happen
All the utilities were named for bad/cult movies.
Plan 9 attempted to introduce
the Alef parallel programming language
to replace "C"
Not to stay dead, the
Inferno operating system
is a descendant of Plan 9,
Limbo programming language
is a direct successor of Alef
Styx communications protocol
is really named 9P2000 for the latest version of 9P (the Plan 9 Filesystem Protocol).
Plan 9 used the GNOT "smart terminal" as described
in this pdf of a short slide presentation.
Glenda the Bunny is the Plan 9 mascot.