In the late 1960s the US Air Force Logistics Command (AFLC) engaged in an unparalleled, real-time computer networking project to manage all its logistics (location, inventory, maintenance, and transportation of personnel, aircraft, weapons, components, spare parts, etc.), the Advanced Logistics System (ALS). The $250 million ALS project was substantially larger in size and cost than earlier real-time computer networking projects (including SAGE programming and SABRE), but it has received virtually no attention from historians of computing. Ultimately, the ALS project failed. Drawing from an oral history with lead contractor Control Data’s (CDC) longtime ALS project manager, previously unavailable CDC documents, and documentation and an oral history from a leading external Air Force advisor on ALS, it shows how the AFLC pushed too far too fast in seeking to be a first-mover in creating a massive unified database and real-time computer network for highly complex logistics.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Title of host publication||History of Computing|
|Subtitle of host publication||Learning from the Past - IFIP WG 9.7 International Conference, HC 2010 Held as Part of WCC 2010, Proceedings|
|Publisher||Springer New York LLC|
|Number of pages||12|
|State||Published - 2010|
|Event||IFIP WG 9.7 International Conference on History of Computing, HC 2010 Held as Part of 21st IFIP World Computer Congress, WCC 2010 - Brisbane, Australia|
Duration: Sep 20 2010 → Sep 23 2010
|Name||IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology|
|Other||IFIP WG 9.7 International Conference on History of Computing, HC 2010 Held as Part of 21st IFIP World Computer Congress, WCC 2010|
|Period||9/20/10 → 9/23/10|
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2010.
Copyright 2020 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
- Advanced Logistics System (ALS)
- Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC)
- And computer networking
- Control Data Corporation (CDC)
- Real-time computing
- Supply management
- Technological failure