Tom's Work Web Pages - National Micromation?

Hopefully, I'll find more pictures to add to the "National Micromation" section later. But for now, meet the only "manufactured" product of this private company I joined in 1970. It's a "Xitron" viewer. In 1970, Xerox was a "hot" item, so when the COM service company, National Micromation, decided to "dip" in to the manufacturing waters, the name "Xitron" (pronounced with a Z, just like Xerox) was born. This was the first plastic-case microfiche viewer ever produced. It's claim to fame was that it didn't need an expensive and (then) hard-to-find quartz-halogen bulb. (It used the tail light bulb from a Mercedes Benz!). While the viewer was a "flop" (dim image and flimsy fiche transport) the name was registered. In 1971 when National Micromation and Data Copy merged, it proved easier to change the spelling on the registration than to register a whole new name. This was a key factor in the naming of the combined company, Zytron. Same pronunciation, different spelling.


Meet Randy Hale. Randy joined National Micromation as a part-time operator in the San Antonio office shortly after it was opened by Kent McManus. Kent moved Randy to Dallas when the company decided it should establish a presence there. Randy stayed with the company and the branch through all of the name changes. A timeframe that includes the period where the branch constituted "the largest COM servicecenter in the country" with 51 COM recorders under one roof producing over a million microfiche masters in one month. This picture was taken in 1982, one of the "Zytron Years" when Randy was a salesman. Randy currently resides in San Antonio.

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