Computer History Project

  • HP was founded

    HP was founded
    linkHewlett-Packard is Founded. David Packard and Bill Hewlett found Hewlett-Packard in a Palo Alto, California garage. Their first product was the HP 200A Audio Oscillator, which rapidly becomes a popular piece of test equipment for engineers. Walt Disney Pictures ordered eight of the 200B model to use as sound effects generators for the 1940 movie “Fantasia.”
  • RAM

    linkThe Williams tube won the race for a practical random-access memory. Sir Frederick Williams of Manchester University modified a cathode-ray tube to paint dots and dashes of phosphorescent electrical charge on the screen, representing binary ones and zeros. Vacuum tube machines, such as the IBM 701, used the Williams tube as primary memory.
  • ENIAC Computer

    ENIAC Computer
    ENIAC-WIKIElectronic Numerical Integrator And Computer was invented for the general computing for the miltitary.Capable of being reprogrammed to solve a full range of computing problems.The machine was built in the University of Pennsylvania.
  • TX-0

    MIT researchers built the TX-0, the first general-purpose, programmable computer built with transistors. For easy replacement, designers placed each transistor circuit inside a "bottle," similar to a vacuum tube. Constructed at MIT´s Lincoln Laboratory, the TX-0 moved to the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics, where it hosted some early imaginative tests of programming, including a Western movie shown on TV, 3-D tic-tac-toe, a
  • FIrst data phone created

    FIrst data phone created
    linkAT&T designed its Dataphone, the first commercial modem, specifically for converting digital computer data to analog signals for transmission across its long distance network. Outside manufacturers incorporated Bell Laboratories´ digital data sets into commercial products. The development of equalization techniques and bandwidth-conserving modulation systems improved transmission efficiency in national and global systems.
  • The Nova

    The Nova
    linkData General Corp., started by a group of engineers that had left Digital Equipment Corp., introduced the Nova, with 32 kilobytes of memory, for $8,000.In the photograph, Ed deCastro, president and founder of Data General, sits with a Nova minicomputer. The simple architecture of the Nova instruction set inspired Steve Wozniak´s Apple I board eight years later.
  • Xerox Corp.

    Xerox Corp.
    linkXerox Corp. bought Scientific Data Systems for nearly $1 billion — 90 times the latter´s earnings. The SDS series of minicomputers in the early 1960s logged more sales than did Digital Equipment Corp.

    linkThe Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET) was the world's first operational packet switching network and the progenitor of what was to become the global Internet. The network was initially funded by the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA, later DARPA) within the U.S. Department of Defense for use by its projects at universities and research laboratories in the US
  • The first e-mail is sent.

    The first e-mail is sent.
    link Ray Tomlinson of the research firm Bolt, Beranek and Newman sent the first e-mail when he was supposed to be working on a different project. Tomlinson, who is credited with being the one to decide on the "@" sign for use in e-mail, sent his message over a military network called ARPANET.
  • Intel´s 8008 microprocessor

    Intel´s 8008 microprocessor
    linkmade its debut. A vast improvement over its predecessor, the 4004, its eight-bit word afforded 256 unique arrangements of ones and zeros. For the first time, a microprocessor could handle both uppercase and lowercase letters, all 10 numerals, punctuation marks, and a host of other symbols.
  • Pong is released.

    Pong is released.
    linkIn 1966, Ralph Baer designed a ping-pong game for his Odyssey gaming console. Nolan Bushnell played this game at a Magnavox product show in Burlingame, California.
  • The Ethernet method of network connection

     The Ethernet method of network connection
    linkRobert Metcalfe devised the Ethernet method of network connection at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center.
    He wrote: "On May 22, 1973, using my Selectric typewriter ... I wrote ... "Ether Acquisition" ... heavy with handwritten annotations — one of which was "ETHER!" — and with hand-drawn diagrams — one of which showed `boosters´ interconnecting branched cable, telephone, and ratio ethers in what we now call an internet.... If Ethernet was invented in any one memo, by any one person, or on any o
  • Alto

    link the first work station with a built-in mouse for input. The Alto stored several files simultaneously in windows, offered menus and icons, and could link to a local area network. Although Xerox never sold the Alto commercially, it gave a number of them to universities.
  • Apple I

    Apple I
    linkSteve Wozniak designed the Apple I, a single-board computer. With specifications in hand and an order for 100 machines at $500 each from the Byte Shop.He and Steve Jobs got their start in business
  • Atari

    linkAtari launches the Video Computer System game console. Atari released the Atari Video Computer System (VCS) later renamed the Atari 2600. The VCS was the first widely successful video game system, selling more than twenty million units throughout the 1980s.
  • Hard disks

    Hard disks
    linkard disks are an essential part of the computer revolution, allowing fast, random access to large amounts of data. IBM announced its most successful mainframe hard disk (what IBM called a “Direct Access Storage Device (DASD)” in June of 1980, actually shipping units the following year.
  • Floppy Drives

    Floppy Drives
    linkSony introduced and shipped the first 3 1/2" floppy drives and diskettes in 1981.The first signficant company to adopt the 3 1/2" floppy for general use was Hewlett-Packard in 1982.An event which was critical in establishing momentum for the format and which helped it prevail over the other contenders for the microfloppy standard.
  • First portable computer

     First portable computer
    linkAdam Osborne completed the first portable computer, the Osborne I, which weighed 24 pounds and cost $1,795.The price made the machine especially attractive, as it included software worth about $1,500. The machine featured a 5-inch display, 64 kilobytes of memory, a modem, and two 5 1/4-inch floppy disk drives.
  • Microsoft WORD

    Microsoft WORD
    linkMicrosoft announced Word, originally called Multi-Tool Word, and Windows. Originally called Multi-Tool Word, and Windows. The latter doesn´t ship until 1985, although the company said it would be on track for an April 1984 release.
  • Macintosh

    linkApple Computer launched the Macintosh. The first successful mouse-driven computer with a graphic user interface. With a single $1.5 million commercial during the 1984 Super Bowl.
  • World Wide Web

    World Wide Web
    linkThe World Wide Web was born when Tim Berners-Lee, a researcher at CERN, the high-energy physics laboratory in Geneva, developed HyperText Markup Language. HTML, as it is commonly known, allowed the Internet to expand into the World Wide Web, using specifications he developed such as URL (Uniform Resource Locator) and HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol).
  • The Pentium microprocessor

    The Pentium microprocessor
    linkhe Pentium was the fifth generation of the ‘x86’ line of microprocessors from Intel, the basis for the IBM PC and its clones. The Pentium introduced several advances that made programs run faster such as the ability to execute several instructions at the same time and support for graphics and music.