On Guard! The Story of SAGE

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In the 1950s, the United States of America developed the SAGE system, an acronym for semi-automatic ground environment. The name was selected to mean “wise”.

This system of large computers and associated networking equipment coordinated data from many radar sites and processed them to produce a single unified image of the airspace over a wide area.

What many people do not know is that the SAGE system was actually quite expensive. To be precise, it cost more than the Manhattan project. The American air-defense system required building of the largest computer ever.

The SAGE system was used from the 1950s to the 1980s. This documentary shows the development process of the system, and how it was used.


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