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CONVERGENT TECHNOLOGIES  Convergent Technologies

Convergent Technologies of Santa Clara, California introduced the Worslate the same time as the Tandy Model 100. Although it was about the same size of the Model 100, the Workslate was primarily a spreadsheet machine. No other software could be loaded except some application which was adaptations of the basic spreadsheet program.

The Workslate used a CMOS version of the old 6800 processor and 16B KB of RAM. RAM size couldn't be extended and allowed a limited 720 cells spreadsheet to be filled. The keyboard with circular rubber-keys was hard-to-use for text entry. However, with its phone book, memo pad, and financial calculator, the Workslate was designed for those who only wanted a business tool and didn't want to learn about computers.

Also built-in were a tape drive able to record and play data's or voice annotations, a 300-baud modem and a printer port.

The Workslate was first launched in the American Express Christmas catalog, and was sold as a high-tech novelty product. But no one was interested in buying a limited spredsheet machine for $895. Convergent Technology planned to sell 200,000 units within a year, but only 5,000 systems were sold in the U.S.A plus some hundreds in Europe. The product was discontinued in July 1984, and the company lost about $15 million.

If you notice the keyboard has a "DoIt" key. The President of the fledgling company Allen Michaels used to roam the halls of the company at night and spray paint "DoIT" everywhere, hence the key name.

John Demian from Modesto, California had the good luck to find a complete Workslate system and sent us the Convergent references for all the peripherals and Taskware he found:
WorkSlate # WK-100
MicroPrinter # WP-100
Comm Port # WC-100 (has a Parallel and Serial interface for external printers.)
Teach Me Now Tape # TW-120

WorkSlate Reference Guide # 09-00279-01 - 11/83
Travel # 09-00385-00 - 11/83
Loan Analysis # 09-00387-00 - 11/83
Portfolio Analysis # 09-00388-00 - 11/83
Financial Statements # 09-00390-00 - 11/83
Cash Management # 09-00391-00 - 11/83
Real Estate # 09-00729-01 - 3/84
Electronic Information Services # 09-00735-01 - 3/84


Contributors: John Demian, Ken Wood

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I actually worked at Convergent manufacturing facility in Santa Clara as a quality inspector, this product was such a jewel before its time! I have 2 complete functional units, printers, all in original cases, user manuals etc.

Monday 16th January 2023
Sharon (USA)

OMG I used to be the only technician at a company called PBDS in Dublin Ca that used to fix the workslates!! Was well before its time!

Friday 6th April 2018
Tami Whelan (California )

I worked at Convergent Technologies from 1980 until 1991. The Workslate was notable as an early user of surface-mount technology. It was Convergent''s first use of SMT.

The Workslate is also notable because before its introduction, Convergent could do (almost) no wrong. Everything we made sold like crazy. After the failure of the Workslate and the almost simultaneous failure of a customized Unix workstation for AT$T, it seemed we couldn''t do much of anything right. The company was sold to Unisys in 1988 and most of what remained of it was disappearing by the time I left in 1991.

Despite all that, the Workslate was a remarkable first step into tablet computing. If it had offered BASIC programming and had a word processor, it may have succeeded. (It is hard to imagine, but in 1985 people really, really wanted BASIC$ and the inclusion of a word processor was considered too premium at that time.)

Wednesday 27th June 2012
Gerald Hawkins (California - United States)


NAME  Workslate
MANUFACTURER  Convergent Technologies
TYPE  Portable
YEAR  December 1982
KEYBOARD  61 rubber keys with numeric keypad and 5 function keys
CPU  Hitachi 6303 (CMOS version of the Motorola 6800)
SPEED  1.228 MHz.
RAM  16 KB
ROM  64 KB
TEXT MODES  46 chars x 16 lines. LCD display
COLORS  Monochrome
SOUND  Unknown
SIZE / WEIGHT  28 (W) x 21.5 (D) x 2.5 (H) cm. / 1.5 Kg.
I/O PORTS  Telephone jack, Printer
BUILT IN MEDIA  Micro-cassette drive
POWER SUPPLY  4 x AA size batteries or AC adaptor
PERIPHERALS  Printer, universal peripheral adapter
PRICE  $1795 - Pen-type printer/plotter: $399

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