Patchboard

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Patchboard

 

a design module of analog computers intended to connect operating units, which perform various computations, with the logic elements according to the system of equations that has been assigned for solution.

A distinction is made between removable and fixed patchboards. Switching is ordinarily achieved by flexible (shielded) cords with single-pole plugs, which are placed in the openings of the removable patchboard and contact the flexible springs of the fixed part of the patchboard or are plugged into sockets mounted directly on the front panel of the operating units (in the case of a fixed patchboard). Modern analog computers are equipped with two types of removable patchboards, one for switching operating units and the other for switching elements of parallel logic. Removable patchboards make it possible to perform the labor-intensive preparatory operations of setting up the problem away from the computer, thus increasing its efficiency. In analog computers operating in hybrid computer systems, patchboards are replaced by systems for automatic switching of operating and logic elements using electronic switches and electronically controlled coefficients (according to a program from the digital computer).

REFERENCES

Yagi, A. “A Solid-state Crossbar Switch for Automatic Analog-computer Patching.” Simulation, 1971, vol. 17, no. 2, pp. 80–82.
Howe, R. M., R. B. Hollstien, and R. A. Moran. “Hardware/Software Considerations in the AD/4 Electronic Patched Hybrid Computers.” In Information Processing 71. Amsterdam, 1972. Pages 668–74.

B. IA. KOGAN

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