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article number 2
article date 02-15-2017
copyright 2017 by subLogic Corp.
  
Inventing the SubLogic Name  
by Bruce Artwick and Stu Moment

  
   

One of the most asked questions of subLogic is how we got the name. Bruce Artwick and Stu Moment discuss the question in the context of the mid 1970’s.

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
I incorrectly remember your choice of the "subLogic" . . . thought that a "subLogic" was be some special type of chip . . . and not chips the cheap memory chips you bought on sale because one bit was inoperative to build your own computer.

"subLogic" was an original name and an unusual one at that. How did you come up with the name.

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
The name was created while I was still a Masters Degree student at the University of Illinois . . . I was working as an hourly staff member at DCL (Digital Computer Laboratory.) in Professor Bill Gear’s Graphics Group. Is it the old lab still there?

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
Just took some pictures for you. The sign looks more modern than the old one.

   
Modern sign for Digital Computer Laboratory (DCL) at the University of Illinois.

Also the insides were revamped. I don’t remember it looking like this. Must be fascia of a sort . . . I still see remnants of the old look in some of the halls.

   
Modern insides of the Digital Computer Laboratory at the University of Illinois . . . not the way it looked when Bruce was working (and studying) there.

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
My partner friend, mentor, and boss, Al Whaley at work and I were working on a 256-channel multiplexor an interface board from the main for a PDP-11 mini computer that was running one of the first installations of Bell Labs’ UNIX in the country.

Each channel had an interface circuit board that would allow input/output from various devices . . . ASR 33 Teletypes, Video “dumb” terminals, acoustic Modems, keyboards, monitors, etc. Do you remember those early monitors/video terminals?

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
Yes and no (said in a slightly disturbed tone). It was about one year earlier. I was taking my first computer course, and some students got to use the newly appearing terminals to enter programs which were compiled instantly.

We had to use IBM punch cards. I went there in the middle of the night and had to punch cards, with no mistakes, because it wasn’t until the next morning that we received a printout of the program results.

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
Yeah we know . . . that is, all of us in the old house. Could hear you until 2 A.M. playing the Kinks or Zeppelin while you were writing out your code. Do you still have the key punch for programming the old Link flight simulator at our new headquarters?

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
Have two of them. Here’s a picture.

   
IBM Key Punch machine. Stu complains that he had to ensure that there were no mistakes because it took four hours before the results of the program were printed.

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
I remember your colleague when you worked at Digital Computer Lab or just DCL as we called it. Met him and other computer people working, usually in the basement.

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
We worked on components in the basement. Remember going down the stairs. There was a drinking fountain . . . could catch a drink after the three block walk from the house.

   
Down the stairs to the basement of DCL. The new fascia ends . . . this is what Bruce and others working in the basement saw.
   
The drinking fountain!

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
Back to the story, "Inventing the SubLogic Name?"

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
Most of the components on the interface circuit board, whether to interface to a keyboard teletype or to some other devices were the same regardless of the device. We left a place on the board for the custom electronics for that particular device. In search for a name for the custom circuit, my colleague called the section a "sublogic." I told Al, “Sublogic – that would be a great name for a computer company”.

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Bruce Artwick, Sublogic
That was well before the company began selling software. When did you name the company?

Bruce Artwick, Sublogic- TO - Stu Moment, Sublogic
Three years later when working for Hughes Aircraft in Los Angeles, when I did the article on "3D Computer Graphics" for Kilobaud magazine, the Owner/Editor of the magazine, John Craig, phoned and said the article looked fine with its BASIC code listings but said many readers would rather just buy the software package than key-in all the code. He asked me for the name of my company. I didn’t have one yet but, on the spot, told him it was subLogic.

Stu Moment, Sublogic- TO - Sublogic Community
Great story . . . so many people wonder the origin of the name. It is original, it has a ring to it, many people remember it and in all the world it only has one meaning, our company.

  
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