Rey Johnson interview, from the television program "Silicon Valley Reports," episode 214
Johnson, Rey (interviewee)
Place of Publication
A short piece by local Silicon Valley television station KTEH about IBM inventor Rey Johnson. Johnson was founder and director of IBM’s San Jose Research Laboratory in 1952. Tasked with developing projects that would bring West Coast engineers into IBM and create new markets, Johnson led a number of experimental research programs and supervised development of the world’s first disk drive—the IBM RAMAC (1956). The disk drive brought near-instant random access to information, a dramatic improvement over the sequential access punched cards and magnetic tape of the day offered. In turn, random access brought real-time transaction processing to businesses, letting managers see a ‘snapshot’ of their business whenever they wanted (instead of waiting for cumbersome ‘batch’ processes to complete). Businesses could finally manage their work at electronic speeds. Every disk drive in use today is similar in basic principle to RAMAC.