After briefly describing his educational background and activities prior to the 1950s, Lappen discusses his association with Telemeter, Telemeter Magnetics, and DataProducts. Through his work with Mitchell, Silberberg and Knupp, Lappen became involved in the management of Telemeter, a Paramount company that developed a precursor to pay and cable TV. He discusses Telemeter's research and development work including: pay TV; a development contract with the Bank of America for a check sorter; a machine for language translation; the construction of ERMA for the Bank of America. Lappen describes the separation of Telemeter Magnetics which manufactured core memories for computer companies from the pay TV operation. He discusses the growth of Telemeter Magnetics and the addition of disk files, buffers, and line printers to their product line. Lappen describes the decision by Paramount to sell Telemeter Magnetics to Ampex and recalls the decision by Erv Tomash, Bill Drake and Lappen to found DataProducts in 1962. He describes the initial capitalization of DataProducts and Cliff Helms' development of a line printer superior to any on the market. Lappen concludes the interview with an assessment of the innovations made by DataProducts and the challenges associated with forming a high technology company.
Chester Irwin Lappen, OH 252. Oral history interview by Arthur L. Norberg, 10 June 1993, Los Angeles, California. Charles Babbage Institute, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. http://purl.umn.edu/107429
Transcript, 45 pp.
Lappen, Chester Irwin.
Oral history interview with Chester Irwin Lappen.
Charles Babbage Institute.
Retrieved from the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy,
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