Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Write Only Memory

     If we have 'read only' memory (ROM), then why can't we have 'write only' memory (WOM) ? Seems logical, doesn't it ;) It seemed so to some managers at Signetics and, they officially published and circulated a datasheet of 'Write Only Memory'. You can check out the datasheet here, it is worth having a look at :)
    The story of WOM goes thus - An engineer at Signetics who, painstakingly wrote datasheets got frustrated because, the datasheets which he submitted for printing were not even read by the approving managers. They were forwarded without checking. So, he decided to play a prank and, wrote this datasheet of 'Fully-encoded, 9046 x N Random Access, Write Only Memory'. There is hardly any need to say that, WOM is utterly useless! Also, the entire datasheet is funny, including the block diagram which shows(among other things) a dripping faucet connected to the IC and, a clock signal which just comes and goes without driving any circuit :D Even then, the datasheet went through approvals, got printed and landed in stores. The management realized their foible only when customers asked for the product and its price(don't know who found it worth buying ?). The company later recalled the catalogs and removed WOM from them.

Thanks to Mangesh for introducing me to this novel technology :)

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