In 1971, the Scientific Research Team of MTA SZTAKI (led by József Hatvany) developed this GD-71 graphic display for simulation tasks which was based on a CDC branded cathode ray tube screen. This display was one of the first to enable Computer Aided Design (CAD) terminal connection with mainframe computers in Hungary. Often, the KFKI TPA-70 (developed in Hungary) was used as its controlling unit.
Using today?s terminology, this device was actually used as a monitor. The display station had its own input peripherals: a numeric keypad, a trackball-like device, and also a light pen could be connected. In addition, some parameters could be set on the display just like on today’s monitors (e.g.: picture intensity). Naturally, the display was not only capable of displaying alphanumeric characters, but vector graphics as well. We should also take note of the device’s dimensions: its screen, 55 cm in diameter, evokes the atmosphere of early science-fiction movies. The dimensions of the GD-71, mounted on a rolling chassis, with a dark grey and light green casing, were the following: 125 * 140 * 100 cm, with a weight of 150 kg.
Note: This graphics station represented an internationally recognized quality at its time. The Control Data was recognized as a product that could be sold on the American market. This device was created at the dawn of graphics displays, a pioneering achievement in its age. Its use for Computer Aided Design applications is also a noteworthy fact!