Control Data Corp. has introduced its first microcomputer, the Control Data 110, which is designed for both standalone and timesharing terminal applications.
The CD110 is available in 22 of Control Data's retail stores--known as Business Centers. It is aimed primarily at the small business market. The unit is also being offered with educational applications programs for academic institutions, which can call up CDC's Plato educational services network, a timesharing system.
The Plato computerized learning system has been developed by CDC over the past 10 years at a cost of more than $750 million. Although there are now about 6,000 plato terminals in use in the U.S., the company says it will be at least 1984 before it becomes profitable.
The company has finally recognized that Plato as originally designed, with remote terminals controlled by a huge central computer, may be too costly for most educational institutions. CDC admits that such a centralized approach is like "using an 18-wheeler to go to the grocery store." CDC therefore introduced MicroPlato, a scaled-down version that can be run on the D1O 116.
The basic 110 unit is priced at $4,995, with 64K of primary memory, a single 8-inch floppy disk drive and an operating system. The 8-inch floppy disk, which is dual density and double-sided, has 1.2 MB of storage.
The CDC 110 is CP/M-based, but further software modifications are necessary before the CDC 110 owners can use commercially available CP/M programs. These modifications will be available in the near future.
BASIC and PASCAL programs are available for the new unit, as are applications programs ranging from $625 for a simple business application to $4,000 for very sophisticated programs.