Control Data Australia Memories compiled by Brian Membrey

#top

Give Us a Call Sometime!

CDA Telephone Directory

At the time of the 1962 Census (the exact date of compilation remains unknown), the Control Data Australia name was still a good twelve months away.

Of course, we knew Facility Codes and ‘phone numbers almost as well as we knew our names way back then, but given that "back then" is at least 20 years ago (as of 2017), maybe we should record them for posterity!

 

 

  

   



   

 



 













 















* AARMEB was the generic Facility Code.   493 was divided by floor and section of the building, e.g. senior management on the fourth floor could be AARM4A or AARM4B.  Not sure when this was implemented or how well it worked - if an employee relocated in the building, his or her Facility would logically change and must have been something of a nightmare to monitor.

[Top]

The 1975 White Pages directory shows the number for the-then main manufacturing plant at 147 Herald Street as 95 9911, the same number as later at Sullivan Street after three-digit prefixes were introduced. It was always “Factory”, perhaps misleading after Business Products marketing and administration were established there.   The same directory lists "Customer Facilities" under 598 St. Kilda Road, but with its own number, 51-1441, not sure why but it only seems to have lasted a year

This White pages directory from 1975 to at least 1980 also shows the Cybernet Centre on the sixth floor at 140 William Street as 67-3251 - John Baxter recalls the mainframe on the south-east corner with the remainder of the computer room and the CDA facilities along the easter side of BHP House and thinks the facility code may have been AARMDC (Melbourne Data Centre, der)

Small Systems Operations was somewhat of a misnomer - shown as at 424 St. Kilda Road,  This was Illoura House on the corner of King’s Way where the CRISP Programming team was located, and I believe later joined by a development group on the RAAF Message Switching project (although Ron Bird suggests testing of equipment was done at 598) - neither of which had much to do with “Small Systems”.  The 1977-78 entries were prior to the cancellation of CRISP and “Small Systems Operations” disappeared immediately afterwards.

(As an aside, after CRISP crashed, the new development company RT Real-Time Systems had their offices in 1 Queen’s Road, the new extension of the TAB complex - eminently sensible, but the building didn’t exist when CRISP started up and Illoura House was the closest alternative, although I remember during my time there as an early Project Manager of always having to warn analysts visiting the TAB to ttake a short detour to the lights at Queen’s Road rather than risking a death-defying dash across King’s Way).

Another mystery as to telephone communication was the Regional Warehouse in Darebin Road, Thornbury. Flash announced the new facility in 1974 and suggested that because of the distance, it could not share the 598 switch and a new number “to be advised”, but White Pages didn’t show anything until 1981 - maybe they finally ran out of carrier pigeons!  Or perhaps just didn’t want to pay the extra few dollars for a additional entry given the warehouse would have had little contact with the great unwashed public.

Dick Bament supplied many of the numbers via a copy of a somewhat battered internal telephone directory which I’m guessing was around 1982-83.

He recalls that there was no particular standard in place for naming Facility Codes and that when the Australian Computer Centre in Knox opened, he simply suggested the logical "ACC".   He believes AARBES may have been Brisbane Engineering Services - perhaps confirmed by another outlook if we rotate the streetscape in the Lightshow by 180 degrees to give a panoramic view of a concrete railway bridge in the image to the right- hardly the impression CDA would have considered condusive to do with marketing or customer-related operations!

The use of "MBA" for Control Data Business Advisors at 11 Queen's Road might have been a clever manipulation - “Melbourne Business Advisors”, but equally “MBA” aka “Master of Business Administration”.

There were earlier aternative sites interstate before CDA settled into the permanent locations above - Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane, and I think Newcastle.  

There were also up to six engineers stationed at VicTAB at 2 Queens Road - probably on the first floor where the computer room was located - but I have no idea as whether they were linked to a CDA switchboard or had a Facility code.)

Maybe two others are worth mentioning - Xidex (pictured right, 2015, but unchanged from the 1980s), to whom CDC sold-out Business Products were at 254 Dorcas Street, South Melbourne (03 699 9688), and of course Miden, who by the time they went under had six different corporate entities with different telephone numbers at 220 Arden Street, North Melbourne.

The one  facility which I couldn’t get a decent angle shot of via Google Maps was 77 Pacific Highway, North Sydney.  I believe it was a first-floor office behind a shop-front and reception area which at one stage featured the 160A originally installed at the Heymanson offices in Bank House and later at Eton Square.  It appears to have been replaced by a multi-story office block.  

The other location sadly Missing-In-Action is the first “spiritual home’ at Eton Square - nothing in the public domain and I know one of the regrets of the renowned camera buff Ron Bird is that he didn’t take shots while early CDA people moved in after incorporation (especially of the


The current facades of most of the CDA facilities have been included in the Light Show.


Facility

Address (Dates)

Telephone

E. L. Heymanson & Co.

Bank House, 11-19 Bank Place, MELBOURNE  3000 (1961-1963)

03 67 8571

Eton Square

474 St. Kilda Road, MELBOURNE  3004 (1963-1966)

03 26 3621

AARMEB

598 St. Kilda Road, MELBOURNE  3004 (1966-1983)  (51 1321 in 1968 ads)

03 51 0351

AARMEB *

493 St. Kilda Road, MELBOURNE  3004 (from 1982)  

03 248 9500

AAR??? Customer Facilities

598 St. Kilda Road, MELBOURNE  3004 (from 1974 - 1975)

03 51 1441

AARMDC?

Cybernet Centre, 6th Floor, 140 William Street MELBOURNE  3000 (1973-1979?)

03 67 8251

AAR???

Small Systems Operations  424 St Kilda Road, MELBOURNE  3004 1978-1979)

03 267 4000

AAR???

Educational Services Division  71 Queens Road, MELBOURNE  3004 (1977-1982)

03 51 1306

  AAR???

   Educational Services Division 433 St. Kilda Road MELBOURNE  3004

 03 268 9666

AARACC

Australian Computing Centre 573 Burwood Highway, KNOXFIELD   3180

03 221 6011

AARRWH

Regional Warehouse  349a Darebin Road, THORNBURY 3497 (1974 - 1983)

03 497 4199

AARCWD

Repair Centre 134 Cambridge Street, COLLINGWOOD  3066 (from 1985)

03 418 0800

 AARMFG

 Factory, 6 Wangara Road, CHELTENHAM (1970 - 1971) (as for 598)

03 51-0351

AARMFG

Main Factory, 147 Herald Street, MOORABBIN  3189 (1972 to 1979)

03 95 9911

AARBPD

Business Products 2 Sullivan Street, MOORABBIN (from 1980, also AARMFG)

03 555 9911

AARMBA

Control Data Business Advisors Pty. Ltd. (as a separate entity)  

Prime House,   11 Queen's Road, MELBOURNE 3004

03 267 7995

 AARSYD

 77 Pacific Highway, NORTH SYDNEY 2060 (to 1969)

 ??

AARSYD

Sabemo House, 12th Floor, 221-23 Miller Street, NORTH SYDNEY  2060 (1970 shows 929-6522)

02 923 9001

 AARCDI  

 100 Christie Street, St. LEONARDS   2065

02 438 1500

 AARADL

 210 Greenhill Road, EASTWOOD   5063 (from 1970)

08 272 2400

 AARBNE

 100 Ann Street, BRISBANE  4000  (31 2641 5 in 1983 ads for PLATO)

07 272 2400

 AARBES

 Brisbane Engineering Services  38 Hope Street, SOUTH BRISBANE  4101

07 260 9228

 AARCBR

 “The Embassy”, 122 Empire Circuit, YARRALUMLA (1963-1972)

 067 732 522

 AARCBR

 131-141 Alinga Street, CANBERRA  2600  (1972 - 1978?)

 067 470 554

 AARCBR

 16 National Circuit, BARTON   2600 (1989 just a week or so before the Miden buyout,  ads show  (062) 71 2222 but still at 16 National Circuit)

 062 73 3433

 AARNCL

 11 Argyle Street, HARBOUR PARK  2300

 049  26 5400

 AARPER

   16 Ord Street, PERTH   6000 (813 9000 in 1973 ads, also 322 4455 in 1983 ads for    PLATO)

 09  329 9511