IBM flowcharting template 1975

IBM Flowcharting template, 1975

I remember having to draw a flowchart for a computer project at school in the early 1980s. This flowchart stencil would have made the job a awful lot easier.

Those big mainframe computers that filled a room from the 60s and 70s had their own language of symbols. This flowcharting template from 1975 was used by systems analysts to sketch out how a computer system worked.

It shows a set of symbols approved for use in flowcharts by ISO (International Standard Organisation) 1028 which dates from 1973.

IBM Flowcharting template (close up), 1975

The symbols show some of the peripherals that came with computers of the day. You can see symbols for punched cards, magnetic tape, punched tape, magnetic drum and magnetic disks.

Punched cards were punched in a special machine and held data which was feed into the computer via a punched card reader. Punched tape was a strip of paper about an inch wide. It was used for input and was sometimes output by a telex machine.

Hard disks were cutting edge back then and came in huge disk packs. Magnetic tape was more common for backup storage.

If you worked with computers in the 70s you will remember these symbols and punched cards and paper tape. It is amazing how quickly technology changes.

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