Paper Tape

As can be clearly seen by the octal values, this is a scan of the mylar tape of the Super Wrinkle boot loader for the APS-73 Computer used in Autologic typesetters.


Super Wrinkle, if I recall, was the ultimate boot loader – a worthy successor to the famous Wrinkle loader. Super Wrinkle required the minimum possible switch toggling to be read from the tape reader. Once it overwrote the toggled instructions, it read a more complex, generic, non-hacky loader. This had to be done after any power cycle / reset / program failure / hardware glitch.

The alternative to toggling in the instructions to read an infinite number of (Super Wrinkle) bytes from the tape reader was too expensive for everyday computer use. We’re talking $27 for a mighty, 256 byte ROM chip. That was back when $27 was $27, mind you. One customer built such a device out of discrete diodes to save the cost. The word was it was quite a monstrosity.