Monday, 25 June 2007

Welcome to this blog created 25 June 2007

The image at the top of this blog is a picture of the Rock Savage chemical plant at ICI Runcorn, Cheshire. There are many chemical plants located here and they were all linked by a system known as "The Works Records System" which was in fact a spreadsheet in all but name. Not only that, it was in many ways more advanced than the first PC spreadsheet which appeared six years later for the PC. Data could be extracted from one application and fed into "later" applications in a cascading fashion. Data was preserved and accumulated by day/week/month or year and could be displayed however the user desired with data cells being connected by mathematical formulae keyed in by non-programmers.
The system went live in 1974 and was in continual use in the chemical plants such as the "Castner-Kelner" plant until 2001 without any change to the underlying software which remained bug free.