Real Time Operating System “OSCAR”

Fifty years ago I worked at an industrial research laboratory designing factory automation systems using mainly TTL IC hardware. I was interested in doing some of this work in software using the newly emerging mini-computers. To come up to speed I studied at night for a Masters degree in computer science at the University of NSW (UNSW) in Sydney, Australia.

As part of this course I designed and programmed a “Real Time Operating System” for programming Real-Time Control Systems. It was called a Monitor at the time. The first version of this program was implemented on a PDP-8 mini computer in the Electrical Engineering department of the university. Afterwards I ported the software to a Data General NOVA mini computer for my then employer (which was not a good idea I discovered later). I gave the system the acronym OSCAR for Operating System CSR Automation Research.

The main impetus for doing this work came from a publication by Digital Equipment Corporation – INTRODUCTION TO PROGRAMMING PDP-8 Family Computers published in 1968.

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