BTW, here is something from bitsavers, which is also some of a mystery to me, the IBM PT-2:
For more images, see: Index of /pdf/ibm/PT-2
What is this? It looks somewhat like a rack mounted console but there’s also this top loading slot, which doesn’t make much sense. I can’t find anything on a “PT-2”.
PT could be Portable Terminal (there’s a carrying handle on the back.)
It has a display connection as well as serial, and some other many-pin connectors. (See picture 07)
The flip-up panel on the top seems to be a sort of mini debug console. (See picture 08)
Four track protect switches? Hmm.
Also I see Local IPL and Remote IPL - IPL being IBM for bootstrap, aka Initial Program Load. So the aim is to control a computer, either directly connected or remote?
I totally missed to notice the handle. I think, you’re right about this being a “Portable Terminal”!
However, it’s still interesting that there is no further information on this. Was these preceding luggables, or was it contemporary to those? And what about any “PT-1”?
Regarding those switches, to me, this looks (at first) much like a general device for field servicing, which was meant to connect to and to control a variety of devices. (If this was used internally by IBM field technicians only, this may also provide an explanation for there being no public information on this available.) Having said that, the display address switches are oddly specific for a more general device. It seems, we’re attempting some kind of low-level control over something which has a CPU, some memory, and (possibly integrated) magnetic media. Is this possibly related to updating microcode in the field?
Very interesting. Can handle both EBCDIC and HEX and power to/from.
The black label (picture 7) says IBM EDP Equip.
There are different meaning
Electronic Data Processing
nowadays enterprise discount program…
I first found this (maybe not directly related to the previous chapter)
IBM Emergency Equipment.
Some info here (…when a customer is hit by a disaster)
So probably a test/emergency unit.
The sprayed number on image 5 looks military.
If someone is searching for mainframe connectors, I found some here (page 23 ff)
Even more interesting the images inside on flickr. Maybe ask him
IBM PT-2 | Flickr
Thank you for digging this up @mainframetom !
The sad story here is that there exists a Flckr gallery titled “IBM PT-2” and Google didn’t return this in any search results for me (also using the exact quoted search term). It’s becoming increasingly difficult to find or to discover anything and it probably depends also on individual luck. One of the factors may be also, whether there had been related searches before this.
I’m entertaining the idea that Google might be improving on search results that didn’t hit a marginal score behind the scenes. So it may be advisable to try again the next day.
– And, in deed, doing so, this doesn’t only return the Flickr gallery, but also a Chinese page, which bears, besides some photos, the following description:
IBM PT-2 Portable Tester, c. 1980
Portable, folding keyboard, IBM tape streamer, in special transport case with legend “Delicate Instrument”. The exact function of this equipment is unclear. Serial no. 1988.
(This is about a 2020 auction. According to keyboard aficionados, there were also two PT-2 keyboards on eBay that year, but these circles only care for the key switches – apparently Micro Switch SD-series – and there is no more information provided.)
So, “PT” is for “Portable Tester”.
Ah, so that black slot is a tape cartridge slot, presumably for a four track tape. Although IBM seems to favour 9 tracks. The 3480 is perhaps a later generation (from 1984 onwards) - the keyboard ICs suggest 1981 manufacture date. Is it at all possible that four tracks on a Compact Cassette were used?
Yes, Google is sometimes …
And I think for me the other (shop) result didn’t show up.
But this (algorithms) is true for other sites and shops.
I wonder why flickr didn’t show up for you. (Mobile?)
Not sure if other search engines are better.
When searching for something specific like info about a rare book, special databases like worldcat or OPAC or sites about a specific topic (or a forum like this) are much better than Google. Or try some VPN.
Same for book contents. Google Books has often much content (was better), there’s also “look inside” elsewhere, or parts/toc like on Springer.
You have to take all of it and know where to find what.
PT-2: Interesting are also the many cards inside the device.