Register of the John A. Starkweather Papers, 1965-1985

Processed by Special Collections staff; machine-readable finding aid created by Xiuzhi Zhou
UCSF Library & CKM
Archives and Special Collections
530 Parnassus Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94143-0840
Phone: (415) 476-8112
Fax: (415) 476-4653
© 1998
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.


History --History, California --General Biological and Medical Sciences --Clinical Medicine --Psychiatry

Register of the John A. Starkweather Papers, 1965-1985

Collection number: MSS 92-92

UCSF Library & CKM

Archives and Special Collections

University of California, San Francisco

Contact Information:

  • UCSF Library & CKM
  • Archives and Special Collections
  • 530 Parnassus Ave.
  • San Francisco, CA 94143-0840
  • Phone: (415) 476-8112
  • Fax: (415) 476-4653
  • Email:
  • URL:
Processed by:
Special Collections staff
Date Completed:
ca. 1992
Encoded by:
Xiuzhi Zhou
© 1998 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: John A. Starkweather Papers,
Date (inclusive): 1965-1985
Collection number: MSS 92-92
Creator: Starkweather, John A.
Extent: Number of containers: 1 carton, 2 boxes
Repository: University of California, San Francisco. Library. Archives and Special Collections.
San Francisco, California 94143-0840
Shelf location: For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Language: English.

Administrative Information


Received from Dr. Starkweather, 11/2/92.


Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], John A. Starkweather Papers, MSS 92-92, Archives & Special Collections, UCSF Library & CKM


Includes correspondence, sample programs of Computest (early version of Pilot), and materials detailing the development of Pilot, various Pilot user manuals.


John Amsden Starkweather was born on August 30, 1925, in Detroit, Michigan. During World War II, he served in the U. S. Coast Guard and attended the U. S. Coast Guard Academy in New London, Connecticut. He obtained his A.B. degree in Art from Yale in 1950, and graduate degrees from Northwestern University (M.A., Experimental Psychology, 1953; Ph.D., Clinical Psychology, 1955). During his Ph.D. candidacy, he was an assistant research psychologist at the University of California San Francisco campus, and a lecturer in psychology at Northwestern. After obtaining his Ph.D., he returned to UCSF's Department of Psychiatry to conduct courses in medical psychology, first as an assistant professor (1955-1961), then associate professor (1961-1966) and later as a full professor (1966-1992) and emeritus professor (1992-). He also has lectured in pharmacology (1956-1962) and in psychology at U. C. Berkeley (1957-1958).
Dr. Starkweather's teaching activities from 1955 through 1961 centered primarily on clinical skills of diagnostic psychological testing and interviewing. Referrals were also accepted for evaluative consultations for faculty members and students in outpatient clinics of Psychiatry, Medicine, Neurology, Neurosurgery, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and inpatient wards of Neurology, Neurosurgery and Medicine. Following a sabbatical leave in 1962, his emphasis of teaching shifted from clinical skills toward consultation about data analysis, research methods and computer usage, involving consultation with faculty and staff, with postgraduate fellows, residents and medical students. It was in this second field of interest that much of Dr. Starkweather's later work took place. From 1965 to 1977 he was the director of UCSF's Office of Information Systems and Computer Center, and from 1967 to 1992 he was first a faculty member and later chairman of the Graduate Group in Medical Information Science.
Notable among Dr. Starkweather's achievements during this period was the development of two interactive computer programming languages, initially designed for automated examinations and learning exercises: COMPUTEST was developed in the early 1960s, and PILOT (Programmed Inquiry, Learning Or Teaching) in the early 1970s. Of the two systems, PILOT --designed for use on individual desktop microprocessor equipment --has been the most successful. PILOT was chosen by the National Library of Medicine as their primary computer language for the dissemination and interchange of computer-based instructional materials in the health sciences, and for the instruction of medical librarians about how to search the MEDLINE data files; a more recent version has been used to develop current instruction about access to toxicology information.

List of Contents



Carton Carton 1, Folder 1.

Computest description and listing

Folder 2-3.

Computest programs, 1st, 3rdgrade

Folder 4.

Teacher programs

Folder 5.

Initial interview

Folder 6.

Intelligence demo

Folder 7.

Programmed interview: menstrual disorder

Folder 8.

Diagnostic interview: chest pain

Folder 9.


Folder 10.


Folder 11.


Folder 12.


Folder 13.

US Office of Education H226 final report 1/69



Carton Carton 1, Folder 14.

SDS 940 PILOT, 1968

Folder 15.

SRI, 1968/69

Folder 16.

PDP8 specs, 1975-76

Folder 17.

PYLON version, 1971

Folder 18.

Dartmouth TSS, 1971-77

Folder 19.

NYLON/PYLON, 1972-73

Folder 20.

PILOT in MUMPS, 1976

Folder 21.

Coursewriter PILOT translator, 1974

Folder 22.

PILOT standard, 1973

Folder 23.

PILOT self-tutor

Folder 24.

Examples formatted for slides

Folder 25.

PILOT Datapoint distribution

Folder 26.

PILOT booklet, 1975

Folder 27.

NIH-LM-01843 final report 6/76

Folder 28.

PILOT for IBM, VM/370 CMS 1976

Folder 29.

PILOT information exchange, 1975-76

Box Box 1, Folder 30.

IEEE P1154 PILOT standard development

Folder 31.


Folder 32.

Nielsen (MUMPS Pilot)(ATARI)

Folder 33.

LaGrone, T. AMIGA

Folder 34.

Kheriaty IBM, APPLE




Apple Pilot Editors Manual (Apple II), 1980


Apple Pilot Reference Manual (Apple II), 1980


Conlon, Tom. Pilot--The Language and How to Use It, 1984


Nielsen, Tom. Esteem (TM) Pilot, 1990

Box Box 2

Starkweather, John A. A User's Guide to Pilot, 1985


Starkweather, John A. Utah PILOT version 7.0, Programmer's Reference manual, 7th ed., 1985


Starkweather, John A. Nevada PILOT Programmer's Reference Manual, 1982


Starkweather, John A. Guide to 8080 PILOT, Version 1.1, [s.d.]


Using IBM PILOT, 1984


PILOT Programmed Inquiry Learning Or Teaching Language Reference Manual [ca. 1984?]


ATARI 400/800 Student Pilot Reference Guide, 1981


ATARI 400/800 PILOT Demonstration Programs Users Guide, 1981


ATARI 400/800 PILOT Primer The PILOT Programming Language Instruction Manual, 1980


Cassette PILOT User's Manual. Processor Technology, 1978


Chapman, Glen I., and William H. Ford. LHC-PILOT User Guide, NIH, 1978


Turner, Lawrence E. PILOT Reference Manual [Hewlett-Packard Computer Curriculum], 1973