The New York Times

 

NUMBER ONE            WEDNESDAY JULY 15, 1964            PRICE SIXPENCE

         


Control Data Australia Memories compiled by Brian Membrey

Head Office


Control Data gambled, lost on Lotto game startup date

The Miami News, 15 June, 1988  (also 8 May, 1988)

"TALLAHASSEE - Control Data Corp. knew it was taking a gamble when it promised to have 3,100 computers in operation by the start of the state's Lotto games.

Yesterday, the Florida Lottery Department won.

The computer firm agreed to pay the state $2.1 million in cash and donate $525,000 worth of computers for falling to have all of its terminals working by the April 29 start-up of Lotto and Cash 3, the state's two computerized lottery games.

"We stipulated in the contract that we would do it, and it didn't happen in the total sense," said Marcel Helou, vice president of sales for Control Data's automatic wagering division, "There were some glitches and problems, but that's all in the past now."

The problems included the failure of nearly 700 of the 3,100 terminals on the first day and hundreds of terminals shutting down for hours at a time several days later.

Helou blamed inadequate links between the computers and telephone lines that connect computers to lottery headquarters in Tallahassee.

"That's a lot of training of people and a tot of complexities," he said, "A lot of things can happen that you didn't plan for."

Under the terms of the Minneapolis company's contract with the Lottery Department, 3,100 terminals had to he installed by April 29, and another 900 are required to be working by today.

"We're comfortable with the next deadline," Helou  said yesterday about having at least 4,000 terminals working today.

Control Data receives 2.99 percent of the ticket sales of Lotto and Cash 3. Under the settlement, the company agreed to forfeit the S1.46 million it would have received for the first month of operations and, beginning Jan. 1, will make six additional $100,000 payments In monthly instalments.

The settlement also requires the company to give the state three educational computers, valued at $175.000 each, and to increase the number of Lotto terminals it installs per day until the required 7,500 are on line.