Ferranti MRT

The Ferranti Market Research Terminal (MRT) was, arguably, the world’s first application-specific handheld computer. [1] [2] It was designed SPECIFICALLY for the market research sector as a means clustering to augment the regular clipboard schemes That, at the time, Were common-place in social and market research . [3] The Ferranti Market Research Terminal (MRT) est of historical significance to the computing industry since it marked the last original design from computer Ferranti , long Established business (started 1882) That HAD risen to fame through a collaborative Manchester Universityto produce the ” Mark 1 “, the world’s first commercial computer and later with Cambridge University producing the ” Atlas ” and ” Titan ” computers which, at their peak, held around 25% of the computing market.

History

Ferranti Plc produced two versions that were labell the MRT-100 and MRT-200 and based on an original 1978 prototype called the Questronic which had been designed at Sheffield Universityas part of a collaboration between the Department of Electrical Electronics and the Department of Electrical Engineering. Geography. [4] While it is difficult to imagine the context of this product development in the late seventies, it is useful to remember that the IBM PC (which has brought the Windows desktops and laptops that are now commonplace!) Was only introduced on August 12 1981. If one ignores calculators, then handheld computers appeared in July 1980 with, perhaps, the first being theTandy Pocket Computer (Radio Shack TRS-80 Pocket Computer). Later in the year, Matsushita (now the Panasonic Corporation) produced a handheld computer market under the Panasonic and Quasar brand. However, these devices were, of course, unlike the application-specific MRT introduced by Ferranti . A merger in 1989 with the American “International Signal & Control Group” (ISC), led to Ferranti going into bankruptcy in December 1994. With the end of the Ferranti MRT and, effectively, Ferranti with its long lineage of UK innovative computing and electronics research, development and manufacture.

Product Description

An excellent description of the Ferranti MRT was given by Deborah Martell ( Cardiff Business School , University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology ) in the 1987 book, “Management Information Systems: The Technology Challenge” (edited by Nigel Piercy) the product as follows: “Accurate survey research is of utmost importance in marketing assessments and NIT [new information technology] is improving this accuracy all the time. This has been shown by Rowley et al in their description of the Questronic project at the University of Sheffield. The first commercialized product to evolve from this is the Ferranti Market Research Terminal (MRT). The MRT is a battery-operated, hand-held, data-capture terminal, which is an electronic replacement for the clipboard and pencil used for gathering information from consumers. This innovation offers real advantages for survey research, because it is easier to process, since it is stored electronically, it is already in a form that can be directly entered into a computer. Likewise, the elimination of the data preparation stage decreases the errors created by human processing. More importantly, results can be more topical since the MRT decreases the time delay in preparation. Other benefits increased by productivity and productivity. Indeed the Questronic MRT procedures, with their instant processing abilities, allow more specific monitoring of TV effects. A particular attraction is the removal of the traditional “bottleneck” at the data preparation stage for input into the computer. Successful companies will, in the future, emphasize even more the matching of a product to the consumer requirements. Consequently, the old Henry Ford says “you can have any color you want, as long as its black” will be gone forever. Other benefits increased by productivity and productivity. Indeed the Questronic MRT procedures, with their instant processing abilities, allow more specific monitoring of TV effects. A particular attraction is the removal of the traditional “bottleneck” at the data preparation stage for input into the computer. Successful companies will, in the future, emphasize even more the matching of a product to the consumer requirements. Consequently, the old Henry Ford says “you can have any color you want, as long as its black” will be gone forever. Other benefits increased by productivity and productivity. Indeed the Questronic MRT procedures, with their instant processing abilities, allow more specific monitoring of TV effects. A particular attraction is the removal of the traditional “bottleneck” at the data preparation stage for input into the computer. Successful companies will, in the future, emphasize even more the matching of a product to the consumer requirements. Therefore, the old Henry Ford says “you can have any color you want, as long as its black” will be gone forever. A particular attraction is the removal of the traditional “bottleneck” at the data preparation stage for input into the computer. Successful companies will, in the future, emphasize even more the matching of a product to the consumer requirements. Therefore, the old Henry Ford says “you can have any color you want, as long as its black” will be gone forever. A particular attraction is the removal of the traditional “bottleneck” at the data preparation stage for input into the computer. Successful companies will, in the future, emphasize even more the matching of a product to the consumer requirements. Therefore, the old Henry Ford says “you can have any color you want, as long as its black” will be gone forever.” [5]

Perhaps the only thing to add to Deborah Martell’s description is that the MRT supported the easy transmission of data by phone using a modem modem which, at the time, was cutting edge technology. [6] To the extent that this was the case , the Internet was only commercialized in 1995 when NSFNET was decommissioned and removed from the marketplace. .

See also

  • Ferranti
  • Ferranti Mark 1
  • Ferranti Titan
  • Ferranti Atlas
  • History of Computing
  • Market Research
  • Opinion Polls
  • Clipboard
  • Mobile Computing

References

  1. Jump up^ Patent “Data Recording Technique and Apparatus (Market Research Terminal)” – GB19820022834, WO1983GB00195
  2. Jump up^ (1986) “The Market Research Terminal & Developments in Survey Research“, European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 20 Issue: 2, pp.35 – 39.
  3. Jump up^ “The Digital Home: A New Locus of Social Science Research“. In The Handbook of Emerging Technologies in Social Research, Oxford University Press, 2010
  4. Jump up^ Questronic website
  5. Jump up^ Deborah A Martell, “Marketing Information and New Technology“, Chapter 8 in the book, Management Information Systems: The Technology Challenge, edited by Nigel Piercy, published by Nichols Publishing Company, New York,ISBN 0-89397-260- 6, p163, 1987.
  6. Jump up^ “The Questronic Project and the Ferranti MRT 100; A Boon For Survey Research“, Professional Geographer, 37 (4), 1985. 459-463.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Copyright computerforum.eu 2018
Shale theme by Siteturner