Providing a First-Hand History Article for the IEEE NTDS History Project


First hand histories are personal reminiscences, written in the first person by people who directly lived the experiences they are writing about. The GHN web site administrators consider them to be the best historical data. These first hand histories can be about any aspect of a person’s involvement with technology, in your case NTDS, MTDS, or ATDS. Since First-Hand accounts are personal, they can only be altered by the author. The GHN has a mechanism to allow two or more people to write their personal histories as a group, for example people working together on the same engineering project.

Your histories can be as short as one paragraph, or as long as you wish. The titles should contain “Naval Tactical Data System”, “NTDS”, “MTDS”, or “ATDS” so the site administrators can identify them and link them to the history article. You can come back any time and add to or edit the article. If you have photos or illustrations you want to include, you can upload them and put them in your article.

The IEEE welcomes non-IEEE members to contribute first-hand histories. If you are not a member just bring up and click on the link “Request Guest Access” and fill in the form that comes up. In the form say you want to contribute a first hand history to the NTDS history project. The form will be automatically sent to Nathan Brewer, the Global History Network Administrator and Librarian ( He will get you registered.

For IEEE members just log in to using your IEEE Web Account username and password. For IEEE members who have lost or forgotten their IEEE username and password, click the “Forgot Password” link when you first bring up the site.

To start your article click on the “Submit a First-Hand History Button” and a field will appear for you to fill in your title. Make sure your title contains “NTDS”, “Naval Tactical Data System”, “MTDS”, or “ATDS” and make sure it is the title you really want because after you submit it, you can’t change it. Only the site administrator can. You can edit or change anything else in your article at any time. It is easiest to type out material ahead of time then get on the GHN site and copy and paste your material into your article, and it is very helpful to read through the User’s Guide on the Home Page before you start. It is also easiest to use the “Rich Editor” when you are working on your article. After you click on it, it takes about a minute to come up the first time in a session, so you have to be patient.

If you have any kind of problem using the site, the site administrator Nathan Brewer stands ready to help you. He can be reached at, and his turnaround is fast.