from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A mid-sized computer, usually fitting within a single cabinet about the size of a refrigerator, that has less memory than a mainframe.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. A computer smaller than a mainframe, but larger than a microcomputer.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. a mid-sized digital computer; at any given point in the development of computer technology, a minicomputer will be faster and have greater capacity than a
microcomputer, but will be slower and have less capacity than a mainframe computer.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a digital computer of medium size
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Around 1971, the work was moved to a Univac 1108 machine and then, in 1978, we were fortunate enough to acquire the first VAX/780 minicomputer from the Digital Equipment
Back then a minicomputer was the size of a desk, whereas a microcomputer could fit on top of a desk.
He formed the Digital Equipment Corporation to manufacture and sell computer components, and then he built something radically different from what had existed before: a smaller computer called a minicomputer that interacted directly with the user.
Of course, they were "mini" in name only: Back in the early 1970s, a "minicomputer" was a series of cabinets that dominated a room, made more noise than an asthmatic air conditioner, and had five- and six-figure price tags.
Dr. Brilliant's company supplied what was then considered fairly advanced technology: a "minicomputer" that took up most of a modified closet, as well as conferencing software.
Rather, the machine was sold as a "minicomputer" and was aimed exclusively at electronics hobbyists.
That they were able to do this was due to two factors: their coding ability; and the fact that Allen had created a software simulator of the Altair machine that ran on a Harvard minicomputer.
It is still a mystery how the entire Boston-area-based minicomputer industry could fail so suddenly in the early 1990s.
Each one functions like a minicomputer with special functions assigned to it.
DEC had been built on the minicomputer, a once innovative category now rendered a dinosaur by the personal computer revolution.