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AndrewT
Berkshire
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151 of 158  Mon 8th Jun 2020 11:04am  
Member: Joined Jun 2020  Total posts:7

Hello Philip, I think that the couple you refer to were Roger and Teri. I believe that they were married in about 1975. The computer department seemed to have good customer service standards helped by having Roger, Teri and others working in customer facing roles.
Courtaulds
PhilipInCoventry
Holbrooks
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152 of 158  Mon 8th Jun 2020 11:53am  
Moderator: Joined Apr 2010  Total posts:4232

Yes, the name Bowler comes to mind. Brill. You get the three brills award & a chocolate biscuit for that, Andrew. Thank you.
Courtaulds
AndrewT
Berkshire
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153 of 158  Mon 8th Jun 2020 12:08pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2020  Total posts:7

Yes, it was Roger Bowler. I couldn’t remember his surname until seeing your message.
Courtaulds
Slim
Another Coventry kid
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154 of 158  Mon 8th Jun 2020 2:00pm  
Member: Joined Mar 2013  Total posts:800

On 8th Jun 2020 10:14am, AndrewT said: I think there were very real concerns as to the consequences of not being able to make the weekly payments and the excuse of a “computer failure” was unacceptable at the time.
Quite. It's become part of the dictionary today. I hear it all the time from big organsiations. No-one will own up to having goofed. It's always the computer's fault. Like as if. In fact, something like 99.99999...% of the time the computer has not made an error. It's human error inputting data or programming. If the computer did actually go wrong, i.e. hardware failure, everyone would know about it because there would be far more serious consequences! I recently had a complaint from a team member that a letter informing them of being furloughed for 3 months stated a start date of 13th July and a finish date of 16th July. When I pointed this out to HR, the youngster there said they thought it was a "computer mail merge error". What is interesting is that people who understand how computers work never blame the computer. As an IT colleague said, it's "finger trouble". GIGO.
Courtaulds
AndrewT
Berkshire
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155 of 158  Mon 8th Jun 2020 2:42pm  
Member: Joined Jun 2020  Total posts:7

Bert was operations manager when I was the programming manager. I seem to remember Bert drove a large Ford Zephyr Mark III. We always had a Monday morning meeting with David Tyler, the computer services manager, where Bert and I would negotiate the amount of computer time available to the developers. Bert always erred on the cautious side, but regularly made more time available as the week progressed when it became clear that he could relax his cautious attitude. On the plus side, this encouraged the programming team to desk check their code to locate errors that would have stopped their test from completing. These basic disciplines have proved invaluable over the years. I remember the horrors of the paper tape reader and the elastic bands. Updates to the share register were provided on paper tape from Burroughs machines in the Braintree office. I tried to replace these in 1976 when I looked at the share registrar’s systems but, as often the case, there was no budget available to update their ageing equipment. My first task when I joined in 1966 was part of a project to drive a graph plotting machine with a paper tape reader that would automate the sizing of garments for clothing manufacturers. Compute time was at a premium so we ended up splicing bits of paper tape together and using a tape punch to correct minor coding errors. I can also remember dropping a few trays of cards over the years and having to reassemble them in the correct order. Most of the programmers became fairly adept at using the hand card punch, three fingers at a time, and red sticky tabs to cover up holes punched in error.
Courtaulds
Disorganised1
Coventry
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156 of 158  Fri 12th Jun 2020 11:25am  
Member: Joined Nov 2012  Total posts:261

It was Roger Bowler, but his wife wasn't Terri. Terri (McKeirnan ?) worked in Data Control, Roger's wife was Pat, she was in charge of the punch room.
Courtaulds
CliffB
Coventry
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157 of 158  Sun 6th Dec 2020 3:17pm  
Member: Joined Oct 2020  Total posts:51

On 8th Jun 2020 4:54am, mcsporran said: I used the Honeywell computer at Courtaulds several times. I worked at Unbrako in Burnaby Road 1969-73 on their Honeywell 200 machine. On a Thursday it was payroll processing day and if there was a maintenance problem with the machine that day, we would rush the magnetic tapes over to Courtaulds to run the payroll there. I think there was a reciprocal backup agreement but I don't recall the reverse operation. I think the Honeywell maintenance engineers had an office/parts store at Courtaulds or somewhere nearby to minimize any unscheduled downtime. It's hard to believe now that even a large company would have a single computer; but it would fill a room and needed scores of staff to keep it busy. Edited by member, 8th Jun 2020 5:29 am
Hi mcsporran, I wonder if you recognise these Smile Cliff
Courtaulds
Annewiggy
Tamworth
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158 of 158  Sun 6th Dec 2020 9:05pm  
Member: Joined Jan 2013  Total posts:1833

That takes me back, my first job at the EMEB in 1963. A punch card was produced for every bill sent out. When the bills were paid the cashier tore the stub off the end. I had the stubs from various showrooms and had to “pull” a card for each one, then put the cards in a machine that added them up and they had to balance to the stubs. Eventually what was left went to be debt collected. Loved that job, I was just 16 at the time.
Courtaulds

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