Tue, 17 Jul 2012 11:03:56
In the K2 days we had no relationship that I can recall with the Korns, although there may have of course been some correspondence.
My best bet is that the Korns were of course analog computer cognoscenti, and as such may have had a substantial consulting business, including the design and construction of special-purpose analog computer-based equipment. At the time ('53 onward) the K2s presented virtually the only opportunity to obtain operational amplifier modules with decent performance conveniently and at low cost.
For a short while, an interim Philbrick Marketing guy, John Embree, sold K2s, then left and went into business making competitive knockoffs, but that all happened in the two years I was away in the US Army (Jan '55-'57). That would have been the only competition. When I returned, George had presented the USA-2 to his staff, and after a vigorous vetting by the newly hired Bruce Seddon, it was introduced as a somewhat larger USA-3.
The USA-3, because of its performance and low cost, was reluctantly adopted by HP's Dymec Division for a new precision V/F converter, despite the fact that it was not made at HP, was an anachronism with the despised vacuum tubes, and thus required its own power supply. It lived in a trailer sticking out the back of the instrument.