Control Data Corporation

The 12-bit CDC 160 and 160-A architecture were the basis of the peripheral processors (PPs) in the CDC 6000 series
CDC 6500 with open panels. On display at the Living Computer Museum in Seattle, Washington.
CDC 6600
CDC 7600, serial no. 1.

Mainframe and supercomputer firm.

- Control Data Corporation

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Computer with a high level of performance as compared to a general-purpose computer.

The IBM Blue Gene/P supercomputer "Intrepid" at Argonne National Laboratory runs 164,000 processor cores using normal data center air conditioning, grouped in 40 racks/cabinets connected by a high-speed 3D torus network.
Computing power of the top 1 supercomputer each year, measured in FLOPS
A circuit board from the IBM 7030
The CDC 6600. Behind the system console are two of the "arms" of the plus-sign shaped cabinet with the covers opened. Each arm of the machine had up to four such racks. On the right is the cooling system.
A Cray-1 preserved at the Deutsches Museum
A cabinet of the massively parallel Blue Gene/L, showing the stacked blades, each holding many processors
The CPU share of TOP500
Diagram of a three-dimensional torus interconnect used by systems such as Blue Gene, Cray XT3, etc.
The Summit supercomputer was as of November 2018 the fastest supercomputer in the world. With a measured power efficiency of 14.668 GFlops/watt it is also the third most energy efficient in the world.
An IBM HS20 blade
Wide-angle view of the ALMA correlator
Example architecture of a grid computing system connecting many personal computers over the internet
Top supercomputer speeds: logscale speed over 60 years
Top 20 supercomputers in the world (June 2014)
Taiwania 3 is a Taiwanese supercomputer which assisted the scientific community in fighting COVID-19. It was launched in 2020 and has a capacity of about two to three PetaFLOPS.
Distribution of TOP500 supercomputers among different countries, in November 2015

Supercomputers were introduced in the 1960s, and for several decades the fastest were made by Seymour Cray at Control Data Corporation (CDC), Cray Research and subsequent companies bearing his name or monogram.


American supercomputer manufacturer headquartered in Seattle, Washington.

Cray-2 supercomputer
Cray T3E processor board
Cray-designed HLRN-III Konrad (XC30/XC40) at Zuse Institute Berlin, 2014
Cray at the SC18 conference

He left the company in 1960, a few years after former ERA employees set up Control Data Corporation (CDC).

Burroughs Corporation

Major American manufacturer of business equipment.

1914 advertisement
An early Burroughs adding machine
Desktop model in use around 1910
Burroughs Payment Systems in Plymouth, Michigan, 2011

Burroughs was one of the nine major United States computer companies in the 1960s, with IBM the largest, Honeywell, NCR Corporation, Control Data Corporation (CDC), General Electric (GE), Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), RCA and Sperry Rand (UNIVAC line).


Line of electronic digital stored-program computers starting with the products of the Eckert–Mauchly Computer Corporation.

UNIVAC Sperry Rand label
Control panel for UNIVAC 1232
UNIVAC 1100/80
UNIVAC Console Printer

In the 1960s, UNIVAC was one of the eight major American computer companies in an industry then referred to as "IBM and the seven dwarfs" – a play on Snow White and the seven dwarfs, with IBM, by far the largest, being cast as Snow White and the other seven as being dwarfs: Burroughs, Univac, NCR, CDC, GE, RCA and Honeywell.


American publicly traded, multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina.

A World War II-era Honeywell C-1 autopilot control panel
Honeywell thermostat
A 1990 Honeywell-Bull Entry Level Mainframe DPS 7 mainframe
Honeywell glass cockpit, sold under the brand BendixKing
Honeywell House (Innoteknia) in Kuopio Science Park in Kuopio, Finland
A Honeywell Wireless home alarm system control panel.
A Honeywell digital compass sensor mounted on a circuit board
Harvey Cox holding a Honeywell fragmentation bomb (1973)

Honeywell, Groupe Bull, and Control Data Corporation formed a joint venture in Magnetic Peripherals Inc.

NCR Corporation

American software, consulting and technology company providing several professional services and electronic products.

Antique three-column full-keyboard cash register
Old National Cash Register on display at the Museo de la Secretaría de Hacienda y Crédito Público in Mexico City
1913 National cash register on display at the Larimore Community Museum in Larimore, North Dakota
National cash register from the end of the 19th century, National History Museum, Sofia
WWII NCR poster
NCR 304 Computer
NCR model 3000 class 3434 computer
NCR office building near Duluth, Georgia
NCR FastLane in use at a Virginia Walmart store

By 1986, the number of American mainframe makers had dropped from 8 (IBM and the "seven dwarfs") to 6 (IBM and the "BUNCH") and then to 4: IBM, Unisys, NCR, and Control Data Corporation.

General Electric

American multinational conglomerate founded in 1892, and incorporated in New York State and headquartered in Boston.

General Electric in Schenectady, New York, aerial view, 1896
Plan of Schenectady plant, 1896
General Electric Building at 570 Lexington Avenue, New York
Carmen Miranda in a 1945 advertisement for a General Electric FM radio in The Saturday Evening Post
GE Global Operations Center in Downtown Cincinnati, Ohio
A General Electric neon sign.
GE gauges to control a railway locomotive at a museum near Saskatoon, Canada
GE facility in Schenectady, New York
A General Electric EV charging station in North America
Linear GE stock price graph 1962–2013
GE trading volume graph

GE was one of the eight major computer companies of the 1960s along with IBM, Burroughs, NCR, Control Data Corporation, Honeywell, RCA, and UNIVAC.

Mainframe computer

Computer used primarily by large organizations for critical applications like bulk data processing for tasks such as censuses, industry and consumer statistics, enterprise resource planning, and large-scale transaction processing.

A single-frame IBM z15 mainframe. Larger capacity models can have up to four total frames. This model has blue accents, as compared with the LinuxONE III model with orange highlights.
A pair of IBM mainframes. On the left is the IBM z Systems z13. On the right is the IBM LinuxONE Rockhopper.
An IBM System z9 mainframe
Inside an IBM System z9 mainframe
Operator's console for an IBM 701

The US group of manufacturers was first known as "IBM and the Seven Dwarfs": usually Burroughs, UNIVAC, NCR, Control Data, Honeywell, General Electric and RCA, although some lists varied.

Seymour Cray

American electrical engineer and supercomputer architect who designed a series of computers that were the fastest in the world for decades, and founded Cray Research which built many of these machines.

With a Cray-1

In 1957, they founded a new company, Control Data Corporation.

Seagate Technology

American data storage company.

First Seagate logo and wordmark, used from 1986 to 2002
Seagate ST-225, cover removed
Former Seagate Technology headquarters during the 2010s in Cupertino, California
Former Seagate Technology headquarters prior to 2010 in Scotts Valley, California

In 1989, Seagate acquired Control Data Corporation's Imprimis division, the makers of CDC's HDD products.