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Oral history interview with Calvin N. Mooers and Charlotte D. Mooers
Mooers, Charlotte Davis, 1924-; Mooers, Calvin N., 1919- (Charles Babbage Institute, 1993)

Oral history interview with Calvin N. Mooers and Charlotte D. Mooers

Issue Date

Charles Babbage Institute

Oral History

Calvin and Charlotte Mooers discuss their association with information retrieval and programming language research from World War II through the early 1990s. Calvin Mooers describes his work in the Naval Ordnance Laboratory (NOL) computer project and his decision to leave NOL for graduate school at MIT. He discusses his development of Zatocoding, an information retrieval system, after discussions with J. W. Perry in 1948. Mooers recalls the formation of the Zator Company in 1949 and his attempts to patent and market his system. He discusses how his frustration in the field of information retrieval led him to explore other interests and the shift in Zator's focus to research with the addition of Raymond J. Solomonoff in 1957. Mooers discusses the research advantages gained through the organization of the Rockford Research Institute, Inc. He describes Solomonoff's continued research in inductive inference (artificial intelligence), his development and attempts to market the TRAC programming language, and his work with Eugene Stuart Fergusson on ASCII standards. Mooers discusses his involvement with Data Concepts in the late 1970s to use TRAC to develop a software package that printed insurance policies. He recalls the company's dissolution in 1983 although the software, SIMPL!E, had been completed. Mooers describes his redefinition of TRAC into TRAC-2 and attempts to market TRAC-2 following his work with Data Concepts. The Mooers conclude the interview with a brief discussion of his current projects related to TRAC and writing vignettes on the history of computing.

Appears in Collection(s)

Other Identifier(s)
other: OH 254

Previously Published Citation
Calvin N. Mooers and Charlotte Davis Mooers, OH 254. Oral history interview by Kevin D. Corbitt, 22 June 1993, Minneapolis, Minnesota. Charles Babbage Institute, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis.

Transcript, 30 pp. Audio file available at

Suggested Citation
Mooers, Charlotte Davis, 1924-; Mooers, Calvin N., 1919-. (1993). Oral history interview with Calvin N. Mooers and Charlotte D. Mooers. Charles Babbage Institute. Retrieved from the University of Minnesota Digital Conservancy,

Content distributed via the University of Minnesota's Digital Conservancy may be subject to additional license and use restrictions applied by the depositor.