Photo: IBM Type 77 Manual (see below).
The IBM Type 77 (or 077) Collator (left), introduced in 1937 for the Social
Security contract, reads two decks of cards from its two input hoppers and
sends the cards to any of five output bins based on comparison of the two
input cards and the plugboard program.
Each card feed reads 240 cards per minute, thus the total speed is 480 cards
per minute for two feeds. The Type 77 rented for $80 per month in 1955.
A collator can be used to file new records (cards) into an existing card-based dataset (merging). Or to check sequence, remove duplicates, search for and extract desired records -- a kind of mechanical database query and update engine. It can even compare two decks so you can find out how they differ. As with all IBM card equipment (except key punches and sorters) the functions and details are specified by control-panel wiring.
|The Type 85 (or 085) collator from 1958 handled numeric
decks and the Type 87 (087) from the same year handled alphanumeric; their
two input hoppers hold 800 cards, and each of four output pocket holds 1000.
These models operate at up to 480 cards per minute. The Type 88 (or 088)
Collator, pictured at left, was introduced about 1959 and processed up to
1300 cards per minute (numeric only). There was also an IBM 89 Alphabetic
Collator, apparently predating many of the other 80-series (because it
looks like the 77).
|The IBM 188 collator from 1961 feeds cards from two feeds
at 650cpm each, 1300 total. The primary feed has a capacity of 3600 cards;
the secondary 1200.
Also See: Tabulators, Sorters, Key Punches, Reproducers, Interpreters, Calculators.
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