RPG Rules

April 29, 2022

RPG Rules

By NickLitten

April 29, 2022

RPG, Ruler

RPG Rules – aka – When Rulers helped you program

A few years ago, moving house for the umpteenth time, I found my old RPG Ruler from way back in the day.

I think this is from the late 1980’s when I was learning to program RPG2 and RPG3 on the first IBM Machine I worked with – the venerable IBM System38:

The trusty old steel RPG Rule served programmers for years helping them plan old RPGII and RPGIII programs. The stainless steel ruler is acid-etched and enamel-filled, giving a real old world beauty. Why arent rulers made like this anymore?

Charts are embossed on it showing:

  • Edit Codes
  • Hexadecimal to Character Conversion
  • 96-Column Card Codes
  • Header Specifications
  • File Description Specifications
  • Input Specifications
  • Calculation Specifications
  • Extension Specifications
  • Line Counter Specifications
  • Output Specifications
  • Telecommunications Specification
  • One side has a 10CPI and a 6LPI scale, the other has inches and punch card volumes

Ah those were the days ?

  • I have one within arms reach of my keyboard right now.
    I’ve had more than one of these since they first came out
    – somehow they kept “walking away”
    until I ordered one with my name etched in the box just below the 1 inch mark.

    These days I just keep it as a memento
    (: and for those times when I need a 14-inch ruler ):

    PS: My first computer job was on a Model 10 with 96 column cards for input
    (: I still have some of those around somewhere in my basement 🙂

  • I remember coding forms, printer layout sheets, and my own favourite – the RPG Debugging Template, along with 132 column printouts…

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