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Historias de la Historia del cómputo en méxico

Some months ago, I got a phone call from Rafael Fernández Flores. He wanted to interview me for a book he was working on regarding the history of computers in Mexico. The first computer in Latin America was installed in 1958 at my University (UNAM), and last year there were several activities conmemorating it. One of said activities is the publication of the book Historias de la Historia del cómputo en méxico, by Rafael Fernández and Margarita Ontiveros. The book was printed in November, and Rafael gave me my copy in early December. It is quite an entertaining read - I mostly enjoyed the archaeological parts of it, referring to the 1950s and 1960s, and with many people that I know first hand (as my father is one of the founding researchers of the Centro de Investigación en Matemáticas Aplicadas, Sistemas y Servicios, CIMASS, now IIMAS). I do believe, anyway, the book is focused too heavily on what happened in the large-scale computer world during a fundamental point in time for me (late 1970s, early 1980s) - It shows that the authors were very involved in the important projects the University set foot on, but they overlook fundamental pieces of the history. Very important developments were made in smaller venues (it was shocking for me to find only one mention, and just as a reference, to Fundación Arturo Rosenblueth and its great Centros Galileo, where many hundreds of kids (me included) learned to love computers, to program, and had a thriving socialization place. I also missed mentions of the BBS scene in Mexico, for which there are various exponents. And, just to single out one person, I found it absurd to have me interviewed and not to include La Mancha de la Calabaza que Ladra. One of the last chapters -there are over 40 chapters, stemming from over 30 individual interviews- publishes the talk I had with Rafael. I must say there are small errata in its transcription (the first example that comes to my mind: I told him that one of the fruits of the OLPC project was the appearance of the now-popular netbooks, partly due to the appearance of lower cost parts, but I must reiterate I didn’t say the Asus EEE is a part of said project). You can I am attaching my interview (as scanned, low-res images) to this post, in case you are interested. Anyway - If the topic interests you, you will find many interesting passages, many passages you will surely laugh with and probably remember. The book is very well laid out. And it is a great joy to be part of it!


hist.jpg (22 KB)

hist_hist_comp_mex.pdf (2102 KB)


Bucio 2009-01-06 21:32:54

Ese libro tengo que leerlo.

Ese libro tengo que leerlo. A ver si puedo encontrarlo

Bucio 2009-01-07 15:43:08

Si me di cuenta, ya mande un

Si me di cuenta, ya mande un mail para ver la forma de adquirir el libro pero no tengo respuesta jejeje, por paquetería me imagino…

Cuetzpallin 2009-01-07 10:42:47

It looks like a great book

It looks like a great book, let me ask for it on the link :-)

Have a nice week.

gwolf 2009-01-07 06:00:38

O comprarlo en línea

Dudo que el libro tenga mucha difusión en librerías… Pero en la liga que puse en el mensaje puedes comprarlo.

regina 2009-01-09 07:40:56


compartir las paginas de un libro con gente que se quiere y se admira debe ser un gran honor. y saber que se esta haciendo historia en el dia a dia, una gran satisfaccion. sin duda te mereces ese lugar. nuevamente, muchas felicitaciones! y quedo a la espera de tu propio libro, aunque apenas se este gestando…

Tuareg 2009-01-08 08:58:48


My dear friend,

Congratulations for your participation, sure will be fun to read this book, which I would like to buy also.

Have a nice day :)