In the mid 1960's Seymour Cray moved back to the Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin area (his home town) with his family to continue his research and development of the worlds first super computer the Cray One. As a young man I was friends with a couple of Seymour's children and on one occasion I was given a tour of his lab which was situated just south of town in a wooded area. I remember seeing large circuit boards with high populations of discrete transistors as there was very limited integration at that time. Having Cray research in town made things very interesting as it drew in many high level electrical engineers and generally raised the technical level of the community. In the early 1970s when I owned a Radio Shack Franchise in town the engineers would often stop by to pickup parts for test jigs or other small electronic devices they were working on. One day I looked up from my counter to see the Great Man himself, Seymour Cray, standing there with a list of small parts he needed. It seems one of his junior engineers was building something he wanted quickly and Seymour himself wasn't above being a Go Fer for him. In fact that is what he said to me, " Today I am Jimmy *********'s Gofer." If you have interest in the personalities involved in the dawn of the super computer age I recommend a book called " The Supermen" by Charles J. Murray.
I wanted to give you the background for this little piece of nostalgia that I am posting to the Vintage Group. Here is a 4K ferrite core memory that was built here in Chippewa Falls for one of the first Cray Computers.
If you are ever in the Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin USA area, the local Museum of Industry and Science has on display a couple of the original Cray Super Computers in fairly complete condition. They are still quite impressive and smell wonderfully of old electronics. While Cray Computers has subsequently been sold to other companies there is still a lot of computer related industries in this area. Seymour Cray, himself was tragically killed in a car accident in 1996 in the Colorado Springs area still pursuing the design of a bigger and faster machine.