Computers have wedged themselves into every facet of our lives and they are what we would use as the symbolic representation of the modern world.
Indeed, the history and evolution of computers is quite extraordinary and with many early computing technology innovations tied to defense contracts, much of this information were kept secret from the public for decades. In this article, we explore the development and progression of computers.
Alan Shugart presents the Winchester hard drive, revolutionizing storage for personal computers.
IBM offers Microsoft Corporation co-founder, Bill Gates, the opportunity to develop the operating system for the soon-to-be announces IBM personal computer. With the development of MS-DOS, Microsoft achieves tremendous growth and success.
The IBM PC is introduced, signaling IBM’s entrance into the personal computer marketplace. The IBM PC quickly garners the largest share of the personal computer of choice in business.
3,275,000 personal computers are sold, almost 3,000,000 more than in 1981.
Hayes introduces the 300 bps smart modern. The modem is an immediate success. Compaq, Inc. is founded to develop and market IBM-compatible PCs.
Lotus Development Corporation is founded. Its spreadsheet software, Lotus 1-2-3, which combines spreadsheets, graphics, and database programs in one package, becomes the best selling program for IBM personal computers.
Instead of choosing a person for its annual award, TIME magazine names the computer Machine of the Year for 1982, acknowledging the impact of computers on society.
IBM introduces a personal computer, called the PC AT, that uses the Intel 80286 microprocessor.
Hewlett-Packard announces the first LaserJet printer for the personal computers.
Apple introduces the Macintosh computer, which incorporates a unique, easy-to-learn, graphical user interface.
Several personal computers utilizing the powerful Intel 803386 microprocessor are introduced. These machines perform processing that once only large systems could handle.
Microsoft surpasses Lotus Development Corporation to become the world’s top software vender.
While working at CERN, Switzerland, Tim Berners Lee invents an Internet based hypermedia enterprise for information sharing. Berners-Lee will call this innovation the World Wide Web.
The Intel 486 becomes the world’s first 1,000,000 transistor microprocessor. It crams 1.2 million transistors on a .4”x .6” sliver of silicon and executes 15,000,000 instructions per second – four times as fast as its predecessor, the 803386 chip.
World Wide Web Consortium releases standards that describe a framework for
linking documents on different computers.
Microsoft releases Windows 3.1, the latest version of its Windows operating system. Windows 3.1 offers improvements such as TrueType fonts, multimedia capability, and object linking and embedding (OLE). In two months, 3,000,000 copies of Windows 3.1 are sold.
Several companies introduce computer systems using the Pentium( microprocessor from Intel. The Pentium( chip is the successor to the Intel 486 processor. It contains 3.1 million transistors and is capable of performing 112,000,000 instructions per second.
The White house launches its Web page. The site includes an interactive citizens’ handbook and White House history and tours.
Marc Andreessen creates a graphical Web browser called Mosaic. This success leads to the organizations of Netscape Communications Corporation.
Jim Clark and Marc Andreessen found Netscape and launch Netscape Navigator 1.0, a browser for the World Wide Web.
Linus Torvalds creates the Linux kernal, a UNIX like operating system that he releases free across the Internet for further enhancement by other programmers.
Microsoft releases Windows 95, a major upgrade to its Windows operating system. Windows 95 consists of more than 10,000,000 lines of computer instructions developed by 300 person-years of effort. More than 50,000 individuals and companies test the software before it is released.
Sun Microsystems launches Java, an object-oriented programming language that allows users to write one application for a variety of computer platforms. Java becomes one of the hottest Internet technologies.
U.S. Robotics introduces PlamPilot a handheld personal organizer. The PalmPilot’s user friendliness and low price make it a standout next to more expensive personal digital assistants (PDAs).
Two out of three employees in the Untied States have access to a PC, and one out of every three homes has a PC. Fifty million personal; computers are sold worldwide and more than 250,000,000 are in use.
The Summer Olympics makes extensive use of computer technology, using an IBM network of 7,000 personal computers, 2,000 pagers and wireless devices, and 90 industrial-strength computers to share information with more than 150,000 athletes, coaches, journalists, and Olympics staff members, and millions of Web users.
Microsoft releases Windows NT 4.0, an operating system for client-server networks. Windows NT’s management tools and Wizards make it easier for developers to build and deploy business applications.
An innovative technology called WebTV combines television and the Internet by providing viewers with tools to navigate the Web.
Intel introduces the Pentium( II processor with 7.5 million transistors. The new processor, which incorporates MMX( technology, processes video, audio, and graphics data more efficiently and supports applications such as movie-editing, gaming, and more.
Microsoft releases Internet Explorer 4.0 and seizes a key place in the Internet arena. This new Web browser is greeted with tremendous customer demand.
DVD (Digital Video Disc), the next generation of optical disc storage technology, is introduced. DVD can store computer, audio, and video data in a single format, with the capability of producing near-studio quality. By year’s end, 500,000 DVD players are shipped worldwide. Apple and Microsoft sign a joint technology development agreement. Microsoft buys $150,000,000 of Apple stock.
Deep Blue, and IBM supercomputer, defeats world chess champion Gary Kasparov in six games chess competition. Millions of people follow the 9-day long rematch on IBM’s Web site.
Fifty million users are connected to the Internet and World Wide Web.
Microsoft ships Windows 98, an upgrade to Windows 95. Windows 98 offers improved Internet access, better system performance, and support for a new generation of hardware and software. In six months, more than 10,000,000 copies of Windows 98 are sold worldwide.
E-commerce, or electronic commerce- the marketing of goods and services over the Internet – booms. Companies such as Dell, E*TRADE, and Amazon.com spur online shopping, allowing buyers to obtain everything from hardware and software to financial and travel services, insurance, automobiles, books, and more,
More than 10,00,000 people take up telecommuting – the capability of working at home and communicating with an office via computer. More and more firms embrace telecommuting to help increase productivity, reduce absenteeism, and provide greater job satisfaction.
Apple Computer introduces the iMac, the latest version of its popular Macintosh computer. The iMac abandons such conventional features as a floppy disk drive but wins customers with its futuristic design, see-through
case, and easy setup. Consumer demand outstrips Apple’s production capabilities, and some vendors are forced to begin waiting lists.
Compaq Computer, the United States’ leading personal computer manufacturer, buys Digital Equipment Corporation in the biggest takeover in the history. Compaq becomes the world’s second largest computer firm, behind IBM.
The Department of Justice’s broad antitrust lawsuit asks that Microsoft offer Windows 98 without the Internet Explorer browser or that it bundle the competing Netscape Navigator in browser with the operating system.
Intel releases its Pentium( III processor, which provides enhanced multimedia capabilities.
U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson rules in the antitrust lawsuit brought by the Department of Justice and 19 states that Microsoft used its monopoly power to stifle competition.
Microsoft introduces Office 2000, its premier productivity suite, offering new tools for users to create content and save it directly to a Web site without any file conversion or special steps.
Open Source Code software such as the Linux operating system and the Apache Web server created by unpaid volunteers, begin to gain wide acceptance among computer users.
Governments and businesses frantically work to make their computer systems Y2K (Year 2000) compliant, spending more than $500 billion worldwide. Y2K non-compliant computers cannot distinguish if 01/01/00 refers to 1900 or 2000, and thus may operate using a wrong date. This Y2K bug can affect any application that relies on computer chips, such as ATMs, airplanes, energy companies, and the telephone system.
Internet provides offer computers free to those who sign up for their service, while hardware manufacturers offer application software free their computers.
Microsoft ships Windows 2000. Windows 2000 offers improved behind-the-scene security and reliability over its predecessor Windows NT. Its new Active Directory stores information about network devices and users and makes this information available to administrators, users, and applications.
According to the U.S. Commerce Department, Internet traffic is doubling every 100 days, resulting in an annual growth rate of more than 700 percent. It has taken radio and television 30 years and 15 years to reach 60 million people, respectively. The Internet has achiever the same audience base in 3 years.
Wireless technology achieves significant market penetration. Prices drop, usage increases, and wireless carries scramble for new services, particularly for a mobile workforce.
e-commerce achieves mainstream acceptance. Annual e-commerce sales exceed $100 billion and Internet advertising expenditures reach more than $5 billion.
Application service providers offer a return to a centralized computing environment, in which large megaservers warehouse your data, information, and software, so it is accessible using a variety of devices from any location.
Microsoft introduces Office XP.
Microsoft launches .NET strategy, which is a new environment for developing and running software application featuring ease of development of Web-based services.
Microsoft ships Office 2003.
RIAA (Recording Industry Association for America files over 250 lawsuits against individual computer users who offer copyrighted music over peer to per networks.
Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition is released on April 24, 2005 and on July 23, 2005. Microsoft announces it is next operating system, code named “Longhorn” will be named Windows Vista.
Apple introduces iMac G5. Its display device contains the system unit.
Google has 54% of the search engine market over Yahoo! and MSN, and approx. 1 billion search requests per day.
Intel introduces the Core 2 Duo processor family. The processor contains 291 million transistors but uses 40 percent less power that the Pentium processor.
Microsoft unveils the Zune to compete against the Apple iPod.
IBM produces the fastest supercomputer called Blue Gene/L. It can perform approx 28 trillion calculations in about one-tenth of a second. It is used primarily to explore hydrodynamics, quantum chemistry, molecular dynamics, climate modeling, and financial modeling.
Apple begins selling Macintosh computer with the Intel micro-processors.
Microsoft releases Internet Explorer 7 (IE 7).
Mozilla releases Firefox 2. 2007 Microsoft ships Windows Vista, and releases the Office 2007 suite of applications. Other significant people and events.
Donald E. Knuth published in 1968 (at age 30) Volume I of his monumental treatise “The Art of Computer Programming”.
Richard Stillman For pioneering work in the development of the extensible editor EMACS (Editing Macros)
Bjarne Stroustrop early work laying the foundations for the C++ programming language. Based on the foundations and Dr. Stroustrup’s continuing efforts, C++ has become one of the most influential programming languages in the history of computing.
The HD player war comes to an end when HD DVD calls it quit, making Blue ray the victor. Microsoft release the World Wide Telescope (WWT) program.
Apple introduces its latest line of Apple iMac computers.
Microsoft Internet Explorer 8 is introduced.
Apple removes support for AppleTalk in August 28, 2009 with its introduction of Mac OS X v10.6 that also is the first version of the Mac OS that no longer supports PowerPC processors.
The Document Foundation releases Libre Office September 28, 2010. And Microsoft announces plans to release Windows Phone 7 October 11, 2010.
Planet Calypso a virtual planet in the game Entropia becomes the most valuable virtual item selling for $635,000.00 2011
Watson, an IBM Super computer beats the two best human Jeopardy players in a three day event with a score greater than the two human players combined on
February 16, 2011.
Apple iPhone 5 goes on sale and also introduces the iPad mini.
Microsoft Windows 8 and Microsoft Surface is released.
YouTube breaks an Internet record as over 8 million concurrent live viewers watch Felix Baumgartner break his own record by jumping from the edge of space (128,100 feet) on October 15, 2012.