totalisator history an Australian achievement
I thought you may be
interested in a little known Australian technological achievement documented at
the following URL.
relates the history of the invention of the world's
totalisator in Australia in 1913 by George Julius.
This system was installed
at Ellerslie with 30 terminals and started
operation that same year. George
Julius ( later Sir George Julius )
went on to found the Australian company
Automatic Totalisators in 1917
which became a world monopoly in this field. A
system was installed at the AJC in 1917 with 150 terminals. The largest electro
mechanical system I am aware of was installed in Longchamps France in 1928 with
273 terminals. See the timelines section in the web page. An electro mechanical
system was tested in Sydney capable of recording 250,000 transactions per
minute! These early electro mechanical systems represent the technology
that inspired the birth of the electronic computer. The Computer Conservation
Society consider these old systems to be
Large scale, multi terminal, real
time computer syetms
and these existed long before the electronic
was thought of.
The first Automatic
Totalisator's system in America was installed at Hialeah Miami in 1932.
Automatic Totalisators went on to develop the world's first
totalisator for the New York Racing Association.
The last electro mechanical system ceased operation at
Harringay London in 1987
George Julius was a past president of The Institution of
Engineers Australia. He was also the first chairman of the
This is a non commercial, history only site.