The history of software in the United States has been somewhat underdocumented. In an attempt to capture the essence of some of this early work before it becomes lost, the Committee organizing the 1987 National Computer Conference (June 15-18, Chicago) has designated June 17, 1987, Pioneer Day. The author, a RAND consultant for 27 years, was invited to prepare and present this paper on some operating system work he accomplished in the mid-1950s. The developments reported here contributed to a series of operating systems for major IBM computers: SOS, IBSYS, and, with the substitution of disk for tape, OS/360.
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