February 4th, 2011

Fail

Boot 'em, Danno.

A rather surprising guest star on today's episode of Hawaii Five-0, originally broadcast in 1975, titled "Computer Killer".

(Click on images to enlarge)

A shifty-looking "computer consultant" watches a gentleman meeting up with an attorney and heading into court.  He notes the man's license plate, then gets back in his car and makes a call on his car phone.


His rotary dial car phone.


Then he opens the suitcase sitting in the passenger seat, revealing a keyboard and screen.


He turns the unit on, clearly revealing the model, an ADDS Envoy.


The terminal boots up.


He attaches the headset of his car phone to an acoustic coupler on the side of the terminal.


The modem connects to the Department of Motor Vehicles, which apparently hires "computor programmers".


The guy hits some keys on the keyboard, which has mysteriously changed colors (continuity error!)


DMV data for the car owner very slowly begins to fill the screen.  The baud rate looks to be about 8 or 10 bits/sec.


After getting the data he needed, he writes it down on a pad of paper.  I guess he spent so much money on the portable terminal and car phone that he couldn't afford a printer.  Notice the keys are orange again.



There are several other more traditional terminals and oldie computer equipment (IBM, Control Data, etc) in the episode, but the portable terminal and rotary car phone were the most interesting.  Oddly, I can find almost nothing about ADDS on the internet, and there don't appear to be any photos of this particular model of terminal.