Author Topic: Apollo AGC and my new favorite bug  (Read 1537 times)

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Offline HP-ILnerd

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Apollo AGC and my new favorite bug
« on: March 18, 2016, 09:14:36 am »
Here's a 48 minute talk at Code Mesh London on the Apollo Guidance Computer.  The first part is just historical background, but they get into a lot of nice (and at the time innovative) technical fiddly bits on the operation and design of the AGC.
As for my favorite bug:  The AGC on the LM was programmed to interpret a certain signal from the landing radar that it had landed.  Apparently there are just 3 craters on the moon that are shaped in a way that radar reflecting off of them would fool the LM's AGC into thinking it had landed, and shut off the engine prematurely. 



There's a couple spots where the presenter misspeaks (I know:  astonishing that such a thing could happen during a live presentation), but generally a really nice talk if the subject appeals to you.
 

Offline German_EE

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Should you find yourself in a chronically leaking boat, energy devoted to changing vessels is likely to be more productive than energy devoted to patching leaks.

Warren Buffett
 


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