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Character information
Common name PDP-10
Also known as fka PDP-6; KA10, KI10, KL10, KS10, DECSystem-10
Human name(s) Cassandra Kotok
First appearance 2012
Height 6'
Hair color Brown
Eye color Blue
Weapon(s) Sword
Faction Formerly DEC Military
Lineage PDP, PDP-10
Rival(s) IBM mainframes, VAX
Technical information
System personified PDP-10 and PDP-6
Developer(s) Digital Equipment Corporation
Debut 1964 (as PDP-6); 1966 (AS PDP-10)
Latest release 1983

Technical details

The PDP-10 line was a family of 36-bit mainframe computers manufactured by DEC in the 1960s, 70s and early 80s. It has a number of notable achievements and firsts, including popularizing timesharing, spawning the highly-influential TOPS-10, TENEX, WAITS and ITS operating systems, the editor EMACS, the first spellchecker, and impacting the design of computers to come. Highly popular with academic and research institutions, clones of the PDP-10 were built by organizations that couldn't obtain actual DEC hardware.

A number of PDP-10s exist today in varying states of operation. Several PDP-10 emulators have been created, allowing modern users to run PDP-10 software on their home computers.

Character details


At this time, PDP-10-tan represents both the PDP-10 and its direct ancestor, the PDP-6.

An earlier personification of PDP-10 depicted the character as a shaggy man in casual clothing and a labcoat. However, that personification has fell out of favor with the creator. It is unknown if this PDP-10-kun will be considered a male counterpart to PDP-10-tan; a personification of a different PDP-10 model (for instance, the DECSYSTEM-20), or omitted from the DEC roster and OS-tan fanon entirely.


PDP-10-tan is depicted as a tall, athletically-built woman with medium-length brown hair, blue eyes and glasses. She generally dresses casually, preferring t-shirts or sweaters and shorts with stockings or tights.

Her personality is typically placid, guileless and friendly; although she may come off as a bit shy or aloof due to her laconic nature, she is actually quite comfortable in groups and physically-affectionate with friends. Because of these personality quirks, she is often mistaken as childlike or ignorant to the ways of the world - in reality, she is perfectly mature and no stranger to the realities of life, but prefers not to trouble herself with such things.

In spite of her gentle nature, she feels a powerful obligation to protect her faction. She is a skilled fighter - perhaps THE most well-trained hardware-tan in the DEC faction - and possesses the strength and bravery to take on large mainframe-tans in battle.

History and background

PDP-10-tan was born into the DEC family in 1963, under the name PDP-6. The first true mainframe-tan born in the minicomputer faction, her arrival was treated with fascination by PDP-1, PDP-4 and PDP-8-tan. They were welcoming of their new comrade, valuing both her friendship and her strategic value as a large-scale system capable of conquering yet-untouched territories and defending them from the encroachment of the IBM faction.

Not too long after PDP-10's introduction in 1964, a native OS was crafted to work with her - TOPS-10-tan (then called PDP-6 Monitor). TOPS-10-tan was the first documented OS-tan in the DEC faction, and would later become the leader of their defense force.

Like the other DEC hardware-tans, PDP-10-tan spent a fair amount of time traveling and working at organizations outside of her home region. She became renown for her work in physics, artificial intelligence, and pioneering the then-new concept of timesharing. Her intelligence and unique way of thinking gained her a place among that strange, burgeoning cabal of academia, The Hackers; during the 1960s and 70s (or Elder Days, as they would later be called), she witnessed the creation of some of the great figures of their society, notably ITS, WAITS, Tenex and the editor Emacs. She helped guide and assist this new generation of OSes and softwares - and programmers - becoming nearly universally-beloved by her followers.

However, by the 1980s cracks started to appear in the culture she had helped make a reality. The competing school of Hackerdom - led by the Unix family, PDP-11 and VAX - had slowly bled the the life from the comparatively baroque Elder Days Hacker culture. The death knell of their kind was the deposal of ITS and PDP-10 from MIT in 1990.

Today PDP-10-tan lives in retirement in an enclave of former DEC hardware-tans.

Family and Relationships

PDP-10-tan maintains a good relationship with most, if not all, of her OS-tans. Her relationship with TOPS-10 and TENEX-tan is rather sisterly, while her friendships with WAITS and ITS were marked by intense platonic love - in particular, her relationship with ITS could almost be mistaken for romance by those unaware of their mutual, near-total absence of romantic interest.

Among the DEC hardwares, PDP-10-tan got along especially well with PDP-11-tan - something of an irony, considering the minicomputer's later role in displacing PDP-10 and her people.

Theories and notes

    • At some point in her youth, PDP-10-tan was injured in a car accident. It didn't seem to have any great impact on her overall physical health, though.
    • Her first journey from home was a trip to Australia.
    • She's really fond of dogs.