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Do not phone then with a staple or mutilate this card. The slogan of the computer a University of Illinois radio service presents a series of programs about you and the computer from banks to hospitals and from airlines to music. It's application in this team and these programs will give you a glimpse of these countless applications and what they mean to you. Do not fall. A new phrase in the vocabulary of mankind. The communication process of the 20th century has taken on a new appearance with the advent of the digital computer. Telephone calls television programs and the comic strips can all speak with new power because of electronic data processing. Each time you dial the number of a friend you ask the assistance of a specialized computer operators work hand in hand with modern computers to connect your call.
As each number is dialed relays in a central switching office are activated. The process of routing your call through miles of wire from city to city is handled by such companies as Illinois Bell Telephone AJ Gartner assistant vice president of the Business Information System group explains how such a system works. Our switching system. Have as imports and the dial telephones that our customers have as they dial the telephone number that they are going to the car. The switching system acting as the computer looks at these numbers and they are dialing. And if you will notice your. First three digits of a direct distance dialing the. Number and. The DTD code the area code that you would know i always has a 1 are a 0 in the
middle of the of the 3 Well if it sees that it automatically says well this is a long distance call and begins to read it that direction if it sees its local number it to. It looks at what number the customer is putting into it and then goes ahead and connects to that number. If it's long distance. Then record the. The number that the customer is dialing and searches for a route to the area that it is dialing and this is no simple matter by the way there are many many possibilities that it could take. It chooses a route and then transmit the number on to the to the Foreign Office. Which of you might say is another little satellite computer which accepts the information and then says Oh I have a card for such and such a number and makes the connection.
These strange sounds come from the central switching office in a local branch of the Illinois Bell System. Relays are counting the digits dials and routing your call. With such switching networks which can be called a specialized computer's direct distance dialing has become commonplace in the near future he would more expand its switching systems may be installed across the United States. Right now in over 20 communities the Bell Telephone Company is offering the services of the electronic switching system. This experimental network developed entirely by Bell Labs allows customers to transfer calls to another number temporarily to a range multi-way conferences and to ring back parties who got a busy signal by dialing a special call the customer can indicate that he will be absent from his home. But that all calls can be routed to a new number. He does not have to talk to an operator or make a special arrangement.
A computer automatically enters this information and until further notice reroutes all calls. If someone dials a number and it is busy the person who was on the line can pretty dial instructions that the calling number will automatically be dialed when the conversation is going to load it. There's allows the customer to talk with everyone who tries to reach him. Even if a busy signal might discourage someone calling such easy access systems have been installed in Cyprus out of Jersey Cleveland Ohio. That really ails California and elsewhere. Bell Telephone is not only using computers to aid in switching actual calls of customers. Other services are being handled by computer on a daily basis. Robert E. Prothero
assistant comptroller of Illinois Bell describes some of the basic functions of computers for the telephone company. Evolution toward using computers and using systems started really with the basic accounting systems like it did in most businesses. So that really one of the primary uses that we make of computers now is in the billing of our customers and in the treatment and follow up on all of the active accounts. But in recent years we have gone into more areas in using the computers for instance the keeping the records of all of the equipment that is associated with the customers line the cable pair that goes out to his house the central office equipment that's required to give him service keeping track of that and assigning that as the customer makes new requests. Another new application or more recent application is.
Using the computer to keep track of the status of the telephone numbers that is who has changed their telephone numbers. Who has been disconnected recently so that when the customer dials a number that is no longer in service. The record can be immediately available to the operator and she can serve the customer better rather than looking through a lot of printed records. Other applications that are being done in the Bell System are the composition of our telephone directories using photo composition equipment fed from computer information. The record keeping an assignment of our trunk facilities and that's the. Equipment or winds between our various towns as to furnish conversation paths for the customers and you can imagine there are millions and millions of various paths throughout the country to furnish
conversation paths for the customers to use. Why is such a business information system necessary. The key word seems to be survival. AJ Gardner explains. We're going ahead with business with the Business Information System. For many reasons but I think the simple one word answer is to why we're going ahead with them as progress. We must keep up with the changing times in the world and make sure that our system can continue to provide the best quality of service and that we know how. So in the areas of better speed better accuracy to handle just the much greater volume of business that we continue to have. As an example of that. Last year we handled the NL and
I value over 3 million service hours. And of course that gets bigger every year now. And just the sheer volume alone is enough reason for going ahead with an information system. The quality of service too is another one that we must keep up. And this is. Traditionally majored by the customer standards and had a customer standard seem to get tighter every year and I have another example there only five years ago when our customer would call in for service. And. Only in about 35 percent of the time when he asked for his service. The next day within one day. Well at the present time it's up to about 60 percent of the cases and he wants his services tomorrow. And we expect in the future this will probably grow to about 75 percent of the cases. So to keep the quality of service. I think
it's a vital reason for having to. Put together a computer system that will be able to handle this. More efficiently. There's an interesting story you may have heard of it. What if we had never gone to dial telephone service in the city of Chicago for instance. To provide today the quality of the speed of service that our dial system provides in Chicago would require that every woman in the city of Chicago be an operator. The volume of traffic is that large so. And that would be. And providing that you could find space enough for all of these operators. So to keep to keep up with the changing. Complexity of our business I think we must. Go to the information systems of the time communication by telephone has made tremendous progress since Alexander Graham Bell's first telephone in 1876.
All kinds of complex information can be relayed by telephone lines. From personal conversations to high speed data transmission new assistance from computers and other electronic equipment places special demands upon the daily user of the telephone. Ari Prothero explains what new equipment and services may imply. It isn't always possible to keep the customer from having to change his habits or change the way he's doing things for instance the dialing. In the old days the customer could dial 0 0 or before that just pick up the telephone and could have a nice friendly chat with the operator. Now our customers dial. 7 10 or in some cases even 13 numbers to complete their call. They are doing it themselves. In this. Particular instance the customer himself has to import the data for the switching network. Another way that a minor
more minor way that the customers affected is is on the bills that we send out and we require him to put his payment on a non bill up along with an IBM card and don't fold spindle or mutilated band. But we hope that in designing these systems that the major effect that the customer will. Will see is the better service that he gets. And we don't care whether he knows that this is a computer or a or some monster of some kind that is processing his bill or taking care of his account. But we want him to recognize it through the better service that he's getting the faster service that when he wants a change in his service that it can be done quickly when he wants some special consideration that it can be handled quickly and that the person that that he is talking to has the updated information on his account that his payments don't get lost that his service doesn't go out of. Out of kilter frequently
so that the effect that we want the customer to see is better service. Facilities of the telephone companies of the nation are also adding to the potential capabilities of other computer based systems. Today's stores can have computers from which Housewives can order merchandise by touch tone telephone code sales clerks at the park and stores can dial credit files for customers and learn if a purchase may be charged electrocardiograms can be translated by computer into tones and transmitted on telephone lines to a doctor thousands of miles away. Orders for production of new manufactured goods can be dialed to a company's computer. No matter what the information it may be transmitted by telephone with the aid of computers. The melody of a familiar television program may not seem a part of the computer age but behind those opening notes is the growing interest in computers everywhere. Television
now relies on electronic data processing equipment for a variety of tasks. Recent coverage of the national election results involved computers from convention to final ballots returns from sample precincts were analyzed in an attempt to reject the outcome of the entire contest within a state. The complexity of such calculations which considered past voting records turnout of voters and other data demanded the speed of a computer across the nation many accurate predictions were made on the basis of only 15 percent of the votes cast with key precincts in computers quickly determine the probable outcome of elections and computers were used even to count actual votes. An entire television stations may even be run by computer w TTG an independent television station in Washington DC handles
its daily programs by computer. The broadcast of each item in the traffic log is carefully controlled by computer. A particular film chain may be activated at a split second and fade from a commercial into another segment of a scheduled program are handled with no manual intervention. Paul champion assistant chief engineer at WTVG explains how this process works. Each change in a visual source or an audio sources program build an IBM card device reads the card stores six cards and each succeeding change in audio or visual source. It was accomplished by one of these cards the machine reads a card and affects you affects the change from say a slide projector to a film projector and simultaneously it would have rolled the film projector and transferred audio and video to one or the other or both
simultaneously at the correct point. Computer courses keyed to a system clock and all these things are programmed to start at a specific time and the computer counts its own time and actually does its work according to a clock on the minute on the second rolls of corrected projector or tape machine or whatever and takes the audio visual source equipment has to be identified and has to be notified as to whether it's film slide videotape and out of the studio remote network. The source has to be identified and for audio and the sources to be identified. The video the time duration of the event with which we are concerned. Also as programmed. Also the manner into the manner in which we get into this event such as a
lat they fade they dissolve. So on is also programmed. On this card which represents a vent on the question but why have such a complex system controlled by computer. Why not have a man at the switch its own champion offers one important reason for such a system that allows a more controlled operation program people will go into this in more detail. But one man's fate is not another man's faith in progress and the aesthetic effects that our production people bizarre can be put into the machine to a large degree. Not everything satisfactory. And you cannot depend on getting the same type of result out of different people throughout the hours of the day. There may be three or four people in control or. Effect in your program. Whereas with the machine all you got to do is service
machine people all the people working fine and it will do and you know exactly what it will do. It can do just as you like and you don't have to say John Smith that was a bad fate I don't like my clips quite so clip it. However there are some drawbacks. The instructions for a computer may not allow the flexibility of a manual operation. Sometimes this is desirable. Sometimes it is not. Mr. Champion observes. The hardest thing as far as getting the system to work has been educating the people to learn to get along with the machine the machine as a limited number of functions and there are certain things that it cannot do. There's certain things that it can do and the problem has been teaching people how to best live with a machine and it is indeed a problem because the people who must federal allas information that goes in to the machine and try to get the machine to function as
we want it to function and keep in mind dozens and dozens of cans and cans our inhibitions that machine cannot perform from a distance. Can't go to a certain slide chain from a particular film chain and for instance suppose you want to establish a theme and then take the music down and bring in a voiceover. Well for this type of thing than you have to remember well I'm going to do this and I must be sure to establish a theme for at least three and a half seconds or else machine will not recognize the effect that you want in there the funny things when the machine goes into trouble and on the machine start rolling it wants and all the slide changes and it's very funny but it's not really fun and when you're trying to run a
broadcast business. One facet of computers especially concerns many businesses employees fear that they will be replaced by the computer and no longer have a job. LS Schalke program manager a WTG explains why this worry is not a part of the picture. I think. The first thing I'd like to say is that I had many many years ago been led to believe like most people that a computer implies replacing people. You know I understand that in manufacturing this is true I can understand how a machine could do a job better than a person and replace him in a service business and in broadcasting. Specifically I can absolutely
say in an unqualified fashion that we have actually more engineers now than we did when we were manually operated. Now whether this type of this conclusion would apply to all service businesses I don't know. I tend to think that it does because a service business means you're dealing more much more closely with human beings and you know if the production line a General Motors stops it means that your car's delivered maybe five minutes later than it would have been if the production line hadn't broken down. In television we can't be off the air for five minutes because people abandon us. They they'll go turn to another channel at home. So we have to have the capability when we're Automated of when the automation fails continuing to look like the station is operating normally. Now moving to another subject I must say that I love automation at this stage of the game. I wouldn't give up automation for anything in the world
and I can say that while at the same time knowing that automation is costing us more money. Than it would if we. Go manual at this minute and throw out the IBM machines and throw out the computer. Years ago we had a traffic department with four people in it. Today the traffic department has 9 people on it because of automation. I had a film department with four editors and now I have a film department with 11 editors because of automation. Otherwise the demands for accuracy are so much greater. The computer is no better than the people who are feeding it information it will not think for itself. If you give it the right information it will think for itself. So this means that we have not replaced any people. As as a program director in the production min. I have a philosophy of the way I want the station to look. I want to be snappy I want to
look clean and I want to fade to black after a programme and a fade up on a commercial in the next event coming in and other words a fairly snappy production like that when it's in the hands of human beings. I never know if a technical director comes in in the morning and had a fight with his wife or has a headache or is hung over from the night before and he might be sluggish that day and move at a very slow sloppy pace and I'm sitting in my office and saying you know what happened to my snappy pictures and my snappy sound. Personalities play a major role in the way things look on the air when the computer was designed I said I wanted to fade to black one that lasted three seconds and one that lasted a second and a half and I want to dissolves this rate and I wanted music to start this way and not that way and I wanted to be able to fade music under and have the announcer come in and so forth and so on. Well with the computer designed to meet my needs I know what's going to go like this all the time with no
arguments and I don't have to call it into a meeting and say why did you do this that way. Because the formulas are there they're prescribed in the traffic department has them down absolutely pad for every single situation. So looking at it from an overall standpoint I wouldn't I couldn't be happier with the results at that tube in my home or in my office that I get from the computer. They're superb and no human being on a continuing regular basis can produce them. A swift pace of many commercial radio stations is maintained with the aid of electronic data processing. A rapid succession of spots this announcements must be logged time and presented smoothly. Computers may now control automated equipment
which presents selections and frees disk jockeys from Casta concern about timing. The more slowly paced pleasant music stations may also use automated equipment computers can select tapes and insert advertisement without the presence of a full time announcer live announcements can be made only once an hour. Of course at times equipment may not function correctly or computer programs may be improperly written. Then backup personnel must be on hand to solve the problems. For many people news of local and international consequence comes in the daily newspapers. Across the United States reporters rushed to the scenes of important events and returned to their desks to write columns of news before the printing presses roll. Making headlines is still the job of the reporter. But the printing of the newspapers may now be the task of a computer. At the Miami Herald.
I can assure junior manager of advance Istomin development keeps tabs on a machine that punches holes in a paper tape these holes are symbols for a computer. With this tape the computer rearrange his words into columns with the proper number of spaces in each line and hyphenates words at the rate of 12000 an hour. Well I don't type operators who work manually may set two hundred and fifty lines an hour with a computer prepared instructions a computer now set to type at eight hundred and forty lines an hour. Still type must be set and printed at machine speeds not the faster electronic speeds of computers. The classified ad department of the Miami Herald also gets the benefit of modern data processing computer programs compare the types of ads placed and check on contracts with advertisers to be sure that the newspaper meets and does not exceed the lines paid for the complex and passively changing files in the classified ad department are now simplified because of computer processing. However not all newspapers utilized such systems in daily publication. Many
union officials are concerned about the jobs available of computer processing takes over all tasks. A majority of newspapers in the United States employ union members and thus have not ventured into this new facet of the publishing business. Do not fold is a new phrase in mans communication process. Radio programs telephone calls and newspaper headlines find a new efficiency through electronic data processing on our next program in this series. A new teacher's pet comes to the blackboard of the old one room schoolhouse computers instruct the students of tomorrow and teachers comment each week. The University of Illinois radio service brings you a new meaning behind the slogan of the computer age.
Do not bend or staple or mutilate this card. This program was distributed by the national educational radio network.
Do Not Fold
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Producing Organization
University of Illinois
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University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Series Description
"Do Not Fold" is a program about the growing applications of computer technology. Each episode focuses on how different professions and sectors are using computers to explore new possibilities in their line of work. Interviewees discuss how they are incorporating new technology into their work, what these innovations mean for the future of their field, and how they may affect the general public.
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Producer: Johnson, Jiffy
Producing Organization: University of Illinois
Production Designer: Haney, Edna
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University of Maryland
Identifier: 69-19-10 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:28:40
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Chicago: “Do Not Fold; 10,” University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed May 28, 2024,
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APA: Do Not Fold; 10. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from