GM Allison autocode 

for Engineering Automatic System for Solving Equations

Autocode for IBM 650 developed at GM Allison.

Jack Horner (designer) said prophetically (when asked if he thought the kind of abstraction needed would be problematic for coding):
"MRS. HALL: You don't think this further removal from the machine will cause undue extra problems than if you taught the person to code in basic machine language?
MR. HORNER: No, as a matter of fact, I believe that in ten or 20 more years the machine language itself will be similar to this. We won't need extensive interpretation from a mathematical language to machine language."

Places Hardware:
Related languages
EASE => EASE II   Evolution of

  • Horner, J. T. "High Speed Computation of Engine Performance" view details Extract: EASE
    A third class of problems will be scheduled also for the 650. These will be the smaller engineering problems of the type now handled on the CPCs as described previously. At this time a system is being prepared for the 650 Computer which is supposed to make programming on the computer easy for engineers. In fact, we call it the EASE System (Engineering Automatic System of Solving Equations).
    The EASE System actually consists of a method of symbolic coding in
    which a compiling system and elementary generators are used to prepare a program in the 650 language. The engineer, however, need not be aware of all the detail which is used to prepare the actual computer program, instead, he breaks down his equations into a sequence of logical computing steps. The EASE System then assigns computer locations for all instructions and data and generates the appropriate computer instructions. Soon after this system is developed
    and checked (within the next month) we expect to have all smaller
    engineering problems programmed by this system. It is anticipated that these procedures will cause a large drop in present CPC loading. As an example of an EASE problem, consider the following equation:

    Y = A + BCosZ * e X
    The EASE solution to this equation is entered on an EASE program sheet as shown in FIGURE 1.

          in Armour Research Foundation Second Annual Computer Applications Symposium 1955 view details
  • Hadley, Ann C.; Hale, M. E.; Homer, J. T.; Rubenstein, Ruth B.; Weiss, A. L. The EASE II system (Engineering Automatic System for Solving Equations), Allison Div. of General Motors Corp., Indianapolis, Ind., Sept. 1956 view details
          in Armour Research Foundation Second Annual Computer Applications Symposium 1955 view details
  • Ryckman George F. "The IBM 701 Computer at the General Motors Research Laboratories" pp210-212 view details Extract: SPEEDCODE and ACOM at GM Allison
    Most applications however, were programmed in SPEEDCODE or ACOM — two programming systems that transformed the single-address fixed-point arithmetic machine into a streamlined three-address floating-point system, SPEEDCODE was authored by Walter A. Ramshaw and his people at the United Aircraft Corporation. ACOM was written by Jack Horner and others at the Allison Division of GM. Both of these systems used subroutines to perform the floating-point arithmetic, which in turn slowed the 701 from its basic speed of 15,000 single-address fixed-point instructions per second to about 150 three-address floating-point instructions per second.
          in Annals of the History of Computing, 05(2) April-June 1983 IEEE (IBM 701 Issue) view details