The CompuTrac(R) Corvus(R) Hard Disk
by JOHN ROSENSTOCK
What a machine! How would you like to have instant on-line access to thousands of pages of data? If
you trade across the board, you're looking at 35 to 50 commodities, including London markets. Each
market has at least 3 or 4 key contracts, so we're talking about 100 to 200 contracts to watch.
For a commercial application, Winchester disk technology can't be beat (and won't be obsolete for at least
3 or 4 years). The disk is a sealed unit with spinning platters that store 10 or 20 megabytes. It is very
reliable, doesn't wear out, and is designed to be left on and spinning all the time.
The CompuTrac(R) configuration puts programs on platter one, and data on platter two. The platters are
referred to as drive one and two, just like when you use floppy discs. However, each drive has about 65
"volumes", each with the storage capacity of one floppy!
My application for a Corvus(R) was in connection with a project I did for a London firm that wanted to
have a machine to trade all markets. The multi-volume capability of the Corvus(R) is ideal for this. I
utilized 49 volumes of a Corvus(R) 20 megabyte hard disk for commodity price data. This allowed the
storage of 3 to 6 contracts of one commodity per volume. The lead contract had life of contract data over
a year long, and the deferred contracts somewhat less. Building a data base this big takes a while, since
all contract files have to be opened and then loaded.