42 Year old renowned Galway Computer Comes Back to Life!

A minicomputer of the type that was made in Galway from November 1971 was switched on last Friday as part of the special The Gathering Ireland reunion weekend attended by c320 former staff of Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC).

After days spent repairing and replacing parts, former DEC technician Joe Hurley got the 1971 PDP11 minicomputer up and running much to the delight of the ex-DECies that came along to witness this historical moment in the 'Computer & Communications Museum of Ireland' located in the INSIGHT (formerly DERI) Centre for Data Analytics in NUI Galway. The 16-bit minicomputer was the flagship of the corporation's product line for much of the 1970s and 1980s. 

As Joe switched on the unit, rows of lights started flashing on its front and a noise like the sound of a jet taking off filled the room, followed soon after by an almighty roar from the crowd of onlookers. A few tears were shed as happy memories flooded back of life in DEC, a corporation that made Galway one of the main centres of hardware manufacturing in Europe.

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