Digitale Geschichte und Historiographie

Punched Cards in Accounting at Helena Rubinstein

Placing the design and use of computing devices into a broader context, I focus on the societal, business, and labour developments at the basis of new computer models. One of five carefully selected case studies considers the use of Powers-Samas and later I.C.T. punched card equipment in accounting at the Helena Rubinstein make-up concern in London during the 1950s. For each case my research looks into changes in occupations after the introduction of new computer models, as well as its influence on the work space and workflow of employees. Finally, I study gender stereotypes in advertisements of the computers, and in this case of the punched card equipment.

During the Work in Progress session I will briefly introduce my overall research approach and demonstrate which sources are available, and what is still missing for the punched card equipment case study.

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