Semi-Automatic Ground Environment

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Semi-Automatic Ground Environment

(SAGE) The computer system of the old US Norad air defence system. SAGE was ground-breaking in many ways, such as being one of the first very large software projects and the first real-time system.

MIT Lincoln Laboratory developed SAGE and MITRE Corporation was responsible for system engineering and implementation oversight.,,

This article is provided by FOLDOC - Free Online Dictionary of Computing (
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Operating at a speed far beyond the capabilities of human intelligence, the almost unbelievable Semi-Automatic Ground Environment machine--or SAGE, as it is more popularly known--can sight the approach of an attacker, compute its course, speed and altitude, 'scramble' an interceptor to meet it, and guide the fighter to the kill....
For a quarter century, from the late 1950s to the early 1980s, the remarkably complex Semi-Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) system continuously surveyed continental air space to detect, identify, and destroy any enemy aircraft attempting to attack North America.
Issues with software complexity in highly automated systems had been a common concern among developers since the early days with the Air Force's semi-automatic ground environment (SAGE).

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