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English Electric Company

From September 1967 to April 1968 I worked at Nelson Research Laboratories, Stafford, England for the English Electric Company.

I was fortunate to obtain, after searching for three months, this job advertised for a graduate, in a new research department proposing to research into Programming Languages, Compilers, and Compiler-Compilers. During the 18 months which I spent at Nelson Research Labs my time was about evenly divided between work on Programming Languages and their Compilation Systems, and work on Scientific Applications.

I was a member of a small group at the laboratory undertaking research into programming languages, compilers and compiler-compilers (at that time thought to be the way forward in compiler technology).

In addition to my work with this group I undertook work for another group engaged in the development of software for the analysis of electrical power transmission networks.

On the programming language side, I did a lot of educative reading around the field (and in AI), and I designed and implemented a dynamic storage allocation system, and a table driven syntax analyser, intended to form the basis for a Compiler-Compiler.

On the Scientific Application side, I assisted in the implementation of a Power Transmission Network Analysis Suite, written in Fortran (IV ish) and in Usercode (assembler), to run on the English Electric System 4-70 (IBM 360 order code). In this I specialised in the processing of the free format input data (not supported by Fortran) and in direct low level physical handling of the magnetic perpherals used for secondary store and backup. The suite of programs was subcontracted to Nelson Research Labs by English Electric Computers on behalf of the South of Scotland Electricity Board.

Reason for leaving:

Economies resulting from the merger of English Electric with the (UK) General Electric Company reduced the prospects for research work in Computing at Nelson Research Labs, and I therefore accepted a job with ICL.


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