Monique R Rona (born 1928)

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ASSOCIATIONS - People

ASSOCIATIONS - Companies

  • Parents - Robert P. Noel , Gabrielle A. Molveau

  • Name : Monique Roberte Rona

  • Gender: Female

  • Race : White

  • Birth Date : 3 Nov 1928

  • Birth Place : Paris Seine, France

  • Death Date : Jun 1975

  • Father : Robert P Noel

  • Mother : Gabrielle A Molveau

  • Notes: Sep 1954: Name listed as MONIQUE ROBERTE RONA; 30 Dec 1987: Name listed as MONIQUE RONA

https://www.ancestry.com/discoveryui-content/view/24812079:60901?tid=&pid=&queryId=7248358eb5dd600db68b472b5ec04364&_phsrc=Kxi319&_phstart=successSource

EVIDENCE TIMELINE

1950 (Dec 28) - Official date of marriage between Thomas Rona and Monique Rona , in Paris France

1951 (August) - Moves to Montreal, Canada (presuming she travels with husband Thomas Rona)

1952 (April 16) : In-laws travel to the United States on the SS Queen Elizabeth

original -(before cropping) : [HJ000T][GDrive]

[HJ000U][GDrive]

1954 - US Naturalization Petition

1956 (July 29) - The El Paso Times - Thomas Rona (and wife Monique Rona) travel to Cloudcroft for research event

Full newspaper page : [HN01B1][GDrive]

Also see - https://www.newspapers.com/image/157785567/

Who was in attendance?

  1. 1961 - Knox Millsaps is a chief Air Force rsearcher - https://scholarship.rice.edu/bitstream/handle/1911/66288/thr19610217.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

  2. Frank W Bubb = "Frank Bubb (July 3, 1892 – May 3, 1961) was a scientist and a mathematician at Washington University. He was a part of the team that developed the cyclotron that produced the first batch of plutonium for the then secret program only referred to as the Manhattan Project, which produced the atomic bomb." (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_W._Bubb_Sr. )

  3. Spiro Kyropoulos - https://www.fold3.com/image/7301719 - Greek physisists, moved to the USA from Germany in 1938

1959 (Sep 28) - US Naturalization Certificate

[HG007E][GDrive]

1962 - Writes to programs (for an IBM 709) - Computing assimilation of productivity in seatwater

noaa_13614_DS1-pg-52-clip-m-rona.jpg

1976-04-us-dept-of-commerce-noaa-computer-programs-in-marine-science-13614-ds1

1976-04-us-dept-of-commerce-noaa-computer-programs-in-marine-science-13614-ds1-cvr1

1963 (Dec)

Full PDF : [HE002C][GDrive]

[HE002D][GDrive]
[HE002E][GDrive]
[HE002F][GDrive]

1964 University of Washington / Oceanography Dept. , Tech Report 98 :

Full PDF : [HE002G][GDrive]

1964 (Aug) - A PDP-5 was purchased and installed on the R/V Brown Bear; Monique Rona is a principal operator

(ALSO SEE NY TImes article : PDP-5 (and similar) computers being used for Ocean studies, 1965 : [HN01BI][GDrive]-)

Source : Biography of Eugene E. and Dorothy M. Collias (Puget Sound Organization) : [HI001I][GDrive]

Notes:

[...]

Computers within the Department of Oceanography

It was decided that Oceanography should have its own sea going computer. A PDP-5 was purchased and installed on the RV Brown Bear in the August 1964. Monique Rona and William Walker were the principal operators. The input-output device was a teletype. No more IBM cards. What was proven by this experiment was that a computer worked very well at sea and was a valuable tool. But the operator frequently rode the rail. When the first RV T. G. Thompson arrived in December 1965, the Department purchased two IBM-1130’s, one for land and one for the ship. This proved to be a very satisfactory addition. The 1130 used a 16-bit word and had 8K of memory. Within a year, 8K more memory was added. This consisted of a rack mounted panel 19” wide, 8” high, 20” deep and cost $10,000. We know had 16K words of memory and could write larger programs. Because of the limited memory, which we thought of as huge, we used many overlays. Again the language used was FORTRAN. IBM had written many FORTRAN subroutines to handle alphabetic characters, thus increasing the usefulness of this computer. [...]

1965

Download full PDF : [HG007M][GDrive]

1966-03-univ-of-washington-oceanograhy-dept-tr-134-651335.pdf

1968 - The United Nations Treaty Series Project / PETER H. ROHN UNIVERSITY OF WASHINGTON / Source: International Studies Quarterly , Jun., 1968, Vol. 12, No. 2 (Jun., 1968), pp. 174- 195

Source : [HP003Y][GDrive] (Note - Purchased for 39 dollars , Nov 2020)

[...]

1963. The United Nations Treaty Series Project (UNTS Project) started as a vague hunch in a class discussion. The question was how to prove the growth of international institutions in conventional international law. The answer was simple in theory but difficult in practice. We should survey the texts of treaties. If references to international institutions increased, the point was proved; otherwise, disproved. The more treaties we surveyed the more reliable the results would be. There was no money to pay for anything, no special equipment, no extra work space, nothing but the idea and the library and a group of students volunteering to do the job as part of their classwork in international law.

Two months later, some fifty students had combed through all volumes of the United Nations Treaty Series (UNTS). There were 426 volumes in the autumn of 1963. A few key characteristics were extracted from every one of the 6,734 treaties published up to that time in the UNTS. The students coded these key characteristics on dittoed code sheets. By Christmas I had on my desk a pile of several hundred code sheets filled out by 50 students in as many handwritings. I had no way of guessing the level of accuracy and completeness, let alone usefulness, of the whole exercise.

[...][ page 178 ][...]

Also in 1965, the UNTS Project became part of the regular graduate instruction in international law at the University of Washington. A system was developed (and is still in force) whereby seminar students must combine traditional and quantitative methods in international law. Standard procedures include the handling of UNTS Project printouts, code manuals, and raw data cards. Students also use auxiliary equipment in the computer center as well as desk calculators and other simple devices for minor individual tasks. Measurements and computer-oriented activities must be related to traditional research wherever possible.

1966. This year saw a gradual shift of emphasis from investment to production. Data enlargement continued by adding identifications of international organizations referred to in treaty texts and identity of registering party, as well as some refinements in the 1965 topic code. The second annual updating was completed in June by adding to the data bank UNTS Volumes 454-503 published between June 1965 and June 1966. Data enlargement and updating having become a routine function of an on-going operation, the main thrust of the work in 1966 concerned new programs for the machine-handling of UNTS data, and analytic work in selected aspects of the law of treaties. Completed were the study of the Canadian UNTS Gap," a special study on the role of military matters in the world's treaty pattern,[12] a general statement of theoretical under- pinnings for the UNTS Project, [13] a paper on information retrieval aspects of the UNTS Project, [14] and an outline of a more general scheme of computerizing international law. [15]

Two professional meetings on the use of computers in international relations research included the UNTS Project: (1) the special working group on electronic data processing set up by the American Society of International Law; [16] and (2) the Institute on "Computers and the Policy-Making Community" sponsored by the Endowment for International Peace and the U. S. Atomic Energy Commission. [17]

Also in 1966, two graduate student papers on UNTS Project material attracted professional interest: (1) one paper was selected for presentation to a West Coast regional conference [l8] and was then revised and published elsewhere; [19] and (2) the other paper was chosen for presentation to the University of Washington Student International Law Society and then also published elsewhere. [20] By the end of 1966, a total of 15 students found their work referred to by name in UNTS Project publications,[21] and 8 of them more than once. [22]

Finally, the UNTS Project was given a broader institutional base at the University of Washington through the appointment of a joint advisory committee by the Dean of the Law School and the Chairman of the Political Science Department.

1967. Three new sets of data were added in 1967: (1) date of effect, (2) date of registration and (3) official languages. New work began on multilateral treaties and on treaty history subsequent to registration, e.g. prolongations, terminations, accessions, withdrawals, amendments, and reservations. The annual updating proceeded concurrently with the addition of new data. UNTS Volumes 504-550 were coded. This brought our data bank up to date, covering all UNTS volumes published through December 1967.

The computer center started developing for the UNTS Project a teletype capacity for instant retrieval between the UNTS Project office and the computer center. This is being done by means of the B-5500 XTAB retrieval program adapted by the computer center of the University of Washington especially to the needs of the UNTS Project. It will be used in addition to the existing capacity of the IBM-7094 for both retrieval and computation. The B-5500 program plus teletype response will cut the waste and the waiting time involved in using the IBM-7094 (or later the IBM-360) for simple retrieval jobs. [23][Grateful recognition for imaginative help far beyond routine cooperation is made to the two co-directors of the computer center at the University of Washington, David Dekker and Carl Young, and to the following staff members in particular: Charlene Haug, Elton Hay, Larry Menninga and Monique Rona.] Hunches can then be tested in minutes rather than days. Retrieval also has become a somewhat larger part of UNTS Project operations as more faculty and graduate students use our data bank and as more requests for special data printouts are received from outside. [24]mm[...]

1968 (January) - Report 181 :

https://digital.lib.washington.edu/researchworks/bitstream/handle/1773/16086/M67-8.pdf?sequence=1&isAllowed=y

1968-01-univ-of-washington-oceanograhy-dept-tr-181-processing-oceanographic-station-data.pdf

1968 (August 14)

Starting Computer Center Corporation (Seattle) ; Full newspaper page : [HN01AV][GDrive]

[HN01AW][GDrive]

1969 (May) - Monique Rona is director of Applications Programming at C3

PDF of Datamation, May 1969 : [HP003Z][GDrive]

1968/1969 - Stephen Russell joins Monique Rona at the Computer Center Corp

Interview with Stephen Russell (born 1937) from 2009 (Aug 08) via the Computer History Museum

Source : [HI001H][GDrive]

[...]

Kossow: All these vertically stacked platters.

Russell: Yeah. That was not as reliable as was desirable. But the main struggle was we just didn't get enough business. And so eventually they went out of business. And at that point, I guess I had annoyed DEC sufficiently that they thought maybe I would be useful in marketing. And so I started working for Digital.

Kossow: There's the one little story that you had a couple of testers up in Seattle.

Russell: Oh yes, yes. We did have a testing program. Was it TOPS-10 by then? I'm not sure. At any rate, the multi-user operating system for the PDP-10 was not a paragon of reliability. In fact, it started out with a pretty dismal mean time to failure. And so we had a couple of people working on basically fixing, full-time, fixing bugs in the operating system. And there was no real lack of bugs to fix. Monique Rona had— was one of the principles, and her son was going to Lakeside School. And so she arranged that we could— we give some time to the Lakeside School who had got a teletype. And we also had built a training room which had six or eight terminal teletypes in it. And what we would do is on Saturdays especially, we'd open that up to the Lakeside students to come in and load test the computer. We wanted lots of people. And the rules were, you can do anything you want, you can try to break the system if you want. But if you do manage to break the system, you've got to tell us what you did and don't do it again until we tell you. And this was quite fruitful. We collected heavy load bugs this way. And two of the students were Paul Allen and Bill Gates. And they had to be admonished several times about the “don't do it again until we tell you” part of the rules. But they certainly had a great deal of fun and they evidently learned quite a bit.

Kossow: You remember anything in particular that they did?

Russell: No. They asked lots of questions. And one of the things that we would do at Saturdays was, Dick Gruen or I or somebody would be in the terminal room, or periodically stick our nose in the terminal room, make sure that the pandemonium was under control, and answer questions." [...]

1972, Educom Spring Conference, Monique Rona not in attendance

See [HE003I][GDrive], Robert Gordon Gillespie (born 1933) was in attendance.

1972 - Back with University of Washington Computer Center, full-time (per Univ Washington general catalog)

PFD - [HE002V][GDrive]

Computer Center

  • Robert G. Gillespie , B.A., Director Computer Center SC-10 [ See Robert Gordon Gillespie (born 1933) ]

  • Charles W. Dickens, Assistant.Director

  • Scott A. Eyler, Assistant Director

  • Monique Rona, Assistant Director

The Computer Center, established in 1956, provides computer services for the University of Washington and the community for education, research, and administrative uses. The principal. computers now installed include a Burroughs 5500 and .3. Control Data Corporation-6400. Also available are key-punch/EAM, auxiliary card-handling equipment with service provided for self-servi~ use; graphics equipment, including mechanical · plotting equipment allowing automatic plotting of information and a digital. recording system capable of reading coor:dinates from maps, graphs, film, etc., and recordiDg them on magnetic tape; and terminals which make possible text editing and remote job entry from teletypes directly connected to the B5500 and the CDC 6400.

[...]

The University of Washington Computer Center is equipped with a CDC 6400 computer system, a ,Burroughs-B5500, and miscellaneous supporting equipment.

Ii! provides compu~g services to all areas of the University and is also available. to all students. Robert G. Gillespie is the Director, Charles W. Dickens, Monique Rona, arid Scott Eyler are Assistant Directors of the Computer Center.

1973 (Oct) - Facts and Futures; What's Happening Now in Computing for Higher Education. Annual Proceedings of theEDUCOM Fall Conference (9th, Princeton, New Jersey ,October 9-11).

Full PDF : [HE002A][GDrive]

1974 (04) - Educom - Monique Rona still with Univ. of Washington

1974-04-ED111361.pdf

Still with U. Washington - "Monique RonaAssistant DirectorUniversity of Washington Computer Center, FC-10Seattle, Washington 98195"

1974 (Dec 25) - Daughter marries

Full newspaper page : [HN01AT][GDrive]

Marriage record also below. Source : https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QLHX-BYBG s4

they were divorced in 1976 : see [ https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:QLC7-P1KG / s5 ]

1975 (June 28) - Son John Michael marries

1975 (July 1) - Monique Rona dies in a car accident

Full newspaper page : [HN01AR][GDrive] / Notes:

1975 (July 1) - Seattle Times

Also - full page PDF here - [HN01AP][GDrive]

Notes - Killed by Gerald Wayne Henneke

[HN01AQ][GDrive]

Additional Evidence

2020 (Oct 21) - Almost all references to Monique Rona have been removed from Ancestry / Newspapers . com :



The New Face of War: How War Will Be Fought in the 21st Century Paperback – October 26, 2007

By Bruce D. Berkowitz

Chapter 3 “THEY ARE ALREADY AMONG US” To understand modern warfare, you need to begin, of all places, in Budapest.

[...] Much of the twentieth century’s brainpower was born within Hungary: John von Neumann, inventor of both quantum mechanics and the computer program; atomic scientists Edward Teller, Eugene Wigner, Leo Szilard, and Isidor Rabi; Elie Wiesel, humanitarian and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize; Andy Grove, one of the founders of Intel Corporation. All were Hungarians. Or, more precisely, ex Hungarians. Budapest may resemble a fairyland. Its onion-domed churches and hot-spring fountains may seem enchanting. But the city has always had a dark side. Hungary is at the crossroads of Europe, another way of saying that it has been on the invasion routes connecting Germany, Russia, and Turkey.

Things got especially chaotic in Hungary after World War I, when the Allies carved up the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and got even worse after the Fascists and Communists began to compete for control. Eventually the Fascists won out, and Hungary sided with Nazi Germany during World War II. As a result, the U.S. Fifteenth Air Force flattened Budapest, and the Red Army pillaged what remained. The combination of a cosmopolitan society, a devotion to education, and a penchant for war and riot has made Hungary a leading exporter of human genius.

Among those fleeing all the chaos were Edward and Irene Rona, who sent their son Thomas and his older brother George to the more tranquil environs of Paris soon after Tom was born in 1923. Tom grew up a Parisian, taking his finals in engineering at the École Polytech-nique on V-E Day. After a brief detour with the French engineering corps building bridges in Cameroon (partly to dodge an irate father and a shotgun marriage), Rona returned to Paris and met Monique Noel, a bank clerk. Tom and Monique soon married.

Tom and Monique began moving farther and farther west to escape the chaos and constraints of the Old World—first to Montreal, then to a junior faculty position for Tom at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. By that time he and Monique had three sons and a daughter. An assistant professor at MIT earned an annual salary of $2,400, so money was tight. Tom heard about an opening for a staff scientist at Boeing. He and Monique flipped a coin. Boeing won, and they piled the four kids in the car and began the drive to Seattle. Tom reported to work, and Monique got a job at the University of Washington.

It’s hard to tell if Rona ever actually used his engineering degree at Boeing, at least in the sense that he never designed a bomber or missile. Officially he was a senior scientist. Defense contractors like Boeing charge the government an extra fee beyond the basic materials and labor it takes to build a B-52 or an air-launched cruise missile. This money goes into an account for preparing bids and proposals (B&P, in defense contractor jargon), which Boeing used to pay for most of Rona’s salary.

The idea was that Rona would develop new ideas for using military hardware—hopefully, new Boeing hardware. In any case, Rona effectively had a license to look at any technology or topic that seemed interesting and was a potential market for Boeing. It was almost as good as being a professor at a major university, if not better.

People were still trying to assimilate the lessons of World War II when Rona arrived at Boeing. The war was just ten years past, and everyone was still trying to figure out the legacy of what Winston Churchill called the “wizard war”—the contest of electronic weapons and countermeasures.

The British had learned the hard way just how complex this game could be. Electronic warfare had become a critical factor in World War II during the Battle of Britain. In 1940 émigrés who had escaped the Continent told British intelligence that the Germans had developed some kind of “beam” weapon. At first the Brits thought this might be a ray gun that could shoot down aircraft by electronically frying their ignition systems; the refugees had talked about the Germans’ testing a “beam weapon that stopped cars.”

When they dug deeper into the reports, though, the Brits discovered that translators had mangled the syntax; what the émigrés really meant was that the Germans were testing a weapon that required them to stop cars-that is, stop nearby traffic to avoid radio interference. Later the British bugged the cells of some German POWs and learned that the weapon was a radio device for guiding bombers to their targets. 1

The Luftwaffe had developed a system of steerable radio beams criss-crossing Britain from stations in France and Germany. A primary beam traced a path to the target for the pilot to follow. If the pilot went off course, the beam would grow weaker, and this would trigger a buzz in his headset telling him to correct his heading. Additional beams bisected the flight path to alert the bombardier as he approached the release point. When the signal from the final crossbeam peaked, the bombardier heard a signal in his earphone and he knew he was over the target. It was like an electronic “. marks the spot.”

Eventually the British learned how to deduce the direction of the beams and thus figure out which targets to protect. Yet this breakthrough had little to do with detecting the beams themselves. The real trick was in intercepting and deciphering the communications that the Luftwaffe used to tell their radio stations where to aim their beam each night. This revealed the direction and frequency of the beams, and with this information, the British could both determine the target the Germans planned to bomb, and also track a beam back to its transmitter.

The British soon learned how to transmit their own signals on the same frequency, jamming the receivers on the aircraft or causing the bombardier’s signal to go off before his aircraft actually reached its target. Combined, all of these separate ingredients provided the components of an information warfare operation. The British learned where the Germans planned to attack, manipulated the Germans’ view of the situation, decided how to respond, and then reacted before the Germans knew what they were up to.

The British thus had the advantage, but they then had to answer the Perennial Question of Information Warfare. Even Indian faced the Perennial Question when they first discovered a rival tribe using smoke signals. it sill confounds information warriors even today: Deny, deceive, destroy, or exploit? Do you transmit your own smoke signals to interfere with his? Do you send bogus signals to confuse your adversary so that he is easier to kill? Do you find the enemy sending the message and kill him? Or do you quietly watch the signals so you know where your adversary plans to be, head him off, and kill him then?

If the Brits jammed the beams or destroyed the radio stations, they might have eliminated the beam system temporarily. The Germans, however, would then have known that their guidance system was successful, or at least successful enough that the British believed they needed to neutralize it. Some German program manager would likely have used this fact to justify a request to build new transmitters that were better hidden and transmitted on different frequencies.

On the other hand, if the British simply sent their fighters to protect the target designated in the deciphered message, some German bombers would have gotten through. Even worse, if a squadron of Spitfires or Hurricanes regularly appeared at the appointed place night after night, the Germans would have eventually figured out that the British had cracked the cipher, which was about the most valuable secret the British had at the time.

This question of how best to attack an information system once you have the advantage—and who should do it—is an old one. Even today it is good for countless interagency meetings and memoranda. The Indian tribes probably had strategy meetings to deliberate how to deal with the smoke signal threat. One warrior likely proposed killing the signal senders, leaving their rivals blind, while another argued passionately for using the information to lay an ambush for the enemy braves who were being directed by the signals.

In the end, the British did a little of each. They jammed some of the signals some of the time, just enough to confuse the Germans. They bombed some of the radio stations. They even leaked some fanciful reports claiming that they had learned how to “bend” radio beams.

The goal was to keep the Germans off balance, and the plan worked. The Germans never lost confidence in their technology and kept using the same beam navigation system. By September 1940 the British had shot down 1,400 German aircraft. German bombing became less accurate. And Ultra, the secret intelligence based on the decrypted intercepts, remained secret until 1974, when the British government itself revealed its coup. 2

Even so, no one had really given much thought to how all these pieces—jamming, deception, intelligence—fit together. The really important thing was always the weapon-a gun or aircraft. Communications, tracking, and guidance were merely “support systems.”

This was all about to change, thanks to other events underway in Seattle. As far back as 1851, when the city fathers convinced Henry Yesler to build his newfangled steam—powered sawmill along the banks of the Puget Sound, Seattle had risen, and fallen, on each new wave of technology. After Bill Boeing built his first seaplane for the Navy in 1917, the new technologies driving the Seattle economy were mainly based on aerospace—first airmail, then bombers, and more recently, missiles and satellites.

In the 1960s a new technology began to drive the Seattle economy: computers. Up to then, computers were scarce and expensive, and could only run one program at a time. Then in 1957 a young mathematics graduate student named John McCarthy proposed a revolutionary idea: time-sharing, or having a single computer run several programs simultaneously. This completely changed the computer business and, by extension, Seattle.

McCarthy, who was visiting MIT on a fellowship at the time, observed that the slowest part of a computer system is always the person operating it. We work at human speed; the computer works at electronic speed. The computer requires just milliseconds to run a typical calculation. McCarthy, later a distinguished professor in computer science at Stanford, realized that if you can collect computer jobs from many users, the computer can electronically rack-and-stack the jobs as they arrive, perform the operations as capacity becomes available, and thus run more or less continuously. 3

A Teletype—a typewriter that transmits a different electronic signal for each character in the alphabet—made it possible to do all this from miles away. The basic idea for the Teletype had been kicking around since 1909, but it was not until 1931 that the Bell System had introduced it into computers.

It did not take long for some early entrepreneurs to put all the pieces together and see a business opportunity. One could buy a computer, hook users into it with Teletypes, and sell portions of the computer’s capacity to companies that couldn’t afford to buy their own.

Time-sharing became popular at universities, which typically had two or three large computers located somewhere on campus, and tens of thousands of faculty and students who wanted to use them. So it was little wonder that many of the people who tried to get into the timesharing business were college staff, like Monique Rona.

By then Monique had expanded her repertoire from oceanography to computer science. Soon she found herself running the university’s computer center. Tom helped with the financing and Monique got together with some university colleagues to buy a Digital PDP-10. They set up the Computer Center Corporation—C-Cubed, for short—in an office near the campus. Monique put a Teletype on the kitchen table, and they were in business.

The PDP-10 had just hit the market. Being a new machine, it was prone to electronic burps and hangfires. The C-Cubed partners thought they might cut a deal where Digital would give them a discount on the computer if they worked out the bugs.

As it happened, one of the Rona boys attended the Lakeside School, a local private academy, and had heard of some classmates who liked to work with computers. Some of the Lakeside moms had bought their kids a Teletype and a few thousand dollars of computer time from local companies with money raised from a rummage sale. The moms hoped their kids might learn a few computer skills writing programs to play ticktacktoe and the like.

The kids had other ideas. They began playing with the Teletype day and night, taking apart programs and writing some of their own. In no time they burned through the computer time their mothers had bought them and had to look for some new benefactors, just when Monique was looking for some eager minds to test her PDP-10. The boys cut a deal with C-Cubed: the boys would look for bugs in the PDP-10, and C-Cubed would give them some time on its computer.

Two of the kids, Bill Gates and Paul Allen, seemed to have a knack for computers. When the machine crashed, they would fetch the “core dump” from the trash and search through the machine language line by line to find the bug. They wangled operating manuals from the staff. Eventually the “Lakeside Programmers Group” came to know the insides of the PDP-10 about as well as C-Cubed did. So, when they ran out of their allotted time on the machine, they naturally took the simple expedient of fiddling with the computer’s operating system to set back the clocks. Bill, Paul, and their Lakeside buddies Ric Weiland and Kent Evans were four of the earliest computer hackers. 4

Alas, the market for computer time-sharing never worked out as well as Monique had hoped, and C-Cubed eventually went broke, another case of roadkill on the path to IT riches. Gates and Allen went on to other ventures. One was a new company, “Micro-Soft,” which they incorporated in April 1975 to sell programs for the Altair 8800, the first personal computer.

Meanwhile, Tom and Monique had that Teletype on their kitchen table. Computers—especially computers that talked with other computers—were part of the family. Tom could see that the Teletype in the Rona kitchen communicating with the PDP in the C-Cubed office near the university was no different than, say, a radar off the coast of New Jersey communicating with a central computer at the North American Air Defense Command in Colorado.

Rona could see that any widget that collected, moved, or processed data was part of a system, each dependent on the other. He could also see that every widget in a system was a potential point of vulnerability, as was the information that passed through them. These so-called support systems were potentially a better target than the weapon itself.

This had not occurred to anyone before, probably because information machines had never routinely talked to one another before. But what Rona now saw was clear: Control the information flowing through your adversary’s computers and communications networks, and you could control the outcome of a battle or a war. Or, as Rona’s monograph, Weapons Systems and Information War , put it, “Countermeasures aimed at the external flow of information will be further improved to the point that they may well become crucial in influencing the outcome of future engagements.—” 5

Often, in common English, this meant that the best way to defeat your enemy was to attack the components of its information systems, and Rona was broad-minded in defining “component.” It included the hardware, of course, but it could just as easily be software, the people operating the system, the people getting the information out of the system, or the data that traveled through it. The best component to attack depended on the opportunities at hand and the risks one was willing to take.

In fact, Rona said, information war offers a major advantage over the old-fashioned kind. In information war, you have a menu of options—that Perennial Question of deny, deceive, destroy, or exploit? It offers an entire matrix of potential pressure points and methods for attacking the enemy. And if your target happens to figure out what you are up to, you can change tactics. The only challenge is to adapt faster than your adversary.

Boeing published Rona’s monograph in the summer of 1976 as a “think piece” for company staff and customers. Tom Rona was the first person to use the term “information war” in print. Considering that the Internet was still thirteen years away and a “home computer” was something you built from a box of components with a screwdriver and a soldering gun, it was not a bad piece of prognostication.


1998 (Jan 13) - Husband passes (see Washington Post)

See [Thomas Paul Rona (born 1923)]

Source : [HN01AO][GDrive]

Thomas P. Rona, 74, a lecturer and consultant who was a former deputy director of the White House Office of Science and Technology, died of hypertensive cardiovascular disease Dec. 27 at his home in Bethesda.

Dr. Rona came to Washington at the beginning of the Reagan administration. He held several posts dealing with science policy before becoming office deputy director in 1986. He retired in 1989 and since then had been a lecturer and consultant.

His clients included the Defense Department, the Mitre Corp., the Bionetics Corp. and the Johns Hopkins University's Applied Physics Laboratory. He was the author of the 1982 book "Our Changing Geopolitical Premises" and was writing a political novel at the time of his death.

Dr. Rona, who was born in Hungary, was an electrical engineering graduate of the Ecole Polytechnique in Paris. He moved to Montreal in 1949 and then to Boston, where he served on the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received a doctorate in engineering from MIT. In 1959, he joined the Boeing Co. in Seattle. He lived in Seattle until moving to the Washington area. His hobbies included painting, listening to classical music and raising tropical fish. He spoke four languages and held several technical patents.

His first wife, the former Monique R. Noel, died in 1975.

Survivors include his wife, the former Jinnett McBride, whom he married in 1987 and who lives in Fairfax; four children from his first marriage, John Michael Rona, Thomas Rona Jr. and Maree Helen Rona, all of Seattle, and John Christopher Rona of Mount Vernon, Wash.; a brother, George, of Brussels; and seven grandchildren. MICHAEL C. PALMER Former Area Resident