Sidebar 10: Csironet Documentation
Started 29 Nov 2022.
Last updated:29 Nov 2022.
Robert C. Bell
Csironet had extensive documentation available to users, as well as periodical publications such as the weekly CYBARITES, the bi-monthly Csironet News, and Annual reports.
I have made scans of all the paper copies of CYBARITE issues (from 26 Oct 1973 to 21 Dec 1983 [this may not be the final issue, but the last I had printed and saved.]). The newsletter was renamed Cnopsis.
Some Cybarites are also available in the CSIRO Content Manager – nos 1-100, 211-212.
LEGACY TRIM CONTAINERCS1248/000CORPWEEKLY BULL ON SYSTEM DEVELOPMENTS IN CSIRONET . HURLE WS ED PRINTOUT,A4+,OT,0.03M. CHRONO-NUMERICAL ORD. HOLD NOS1-100,211,212. INDEX WITH NO97. SEE ALSO CS12511987-09-15_TRIMSERVICE (breenbreen)1987-09-15
CSIRO Libraries have scanned all the DCR/Csironet News issues.
I have scanned all the copies of DCR Staff News that I had.
DCR/Csironet had an extensive range of types of documentation: these were:
- Reference Manuals (45)
- Users Manuals (9)
- Introductory Guides (9)
- Technical Reports (27)
- Services Notes (10)
- Computing Notes (60)
The number after each item above shows the number of publications of each type available in Feb 1987. All of the computing notes had been withdrawn or replaced by content in reference manuals by this stage. Technical reports were also being phased out.
The first reference manual was a Publications Catalog, giving details of the documentation. See the Feb 1987 version here.
Initially, there was no on-line documentation, but printed manuals from the Vendors and DCR were available. The only printers available were line printers.
With the introduction of the COMp 80, microfiche became a very economical way to provide very extensive documentation to users, and became the major distribution system in the 1980s. I have copies of the final Csironet documentation on microfiche, but have no current way to read or digitise these items.
Laser printing became available, and these were used to produce printed documentation in A4 format, with thicker, coloured cardboard covers, stapled, and sometimes bound. I have scanned my paper copies of these.
With later systems, e.g. NOS and OSIV/F4, on-line documentation became available.