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Digital Equipment Corporation

  • Birth of the TX-0 and TX-2

    Birth of the TX-0 and TX-2
    TX-0 Wikipedia
    Egineers at the MIT Lincoln Lab, Ken Olsen and Harlan Anderson, begin development on an experimental 18-bit Computer that replaces bulky vacuum tubes with new fangled transistors that is used as a test bed for the more complex 36-bit TX-2.
  • Search for Capital

    Search for Capital
    After noticing that people in the MIT Labs tended to flock to the less powerful TX-0, Ken, Harlan, and Ken's brother Stan decided to try and open a computer company aimed at building smaller, interactive computers. However, due to the failure of recent computer compary start-ups, they have difficulty finding investors. The only serious investor is George Deriot from the American Research and Development Corporation.
  • DEC Ships First Product

    DEC Ships First Product
    In 1958, DEC ships its Digital Labratory Modules used for regular computing and testing other computers, even from other companies. Picture: By RTC at the English language Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,
  • Period: to

    Digital Modules

    DEC's digital modules remain a product up until the 70's
  • Period: to

    Development of the PDP-1

  • Programable Data Processor Prototype Unveiled at the Joint Computer Confrence in 1959

    Programable Data Processor Prototype Unveiled at the Joint Computer Confrence in 1959
    Engineer Ben Gurley starts design phase in August and the PDP-1 is shown off the the world. Picture: By Alex Handy (cropped by Arnold Reinhold) -, CC BY-SA 2.0,
  • Period: to

    PDP-1 Production TIme

  • PDP-4 Introduced

    The PDP-4 was introduced in november 1962 as a follow up to the PDP-1.The PDP-2 was said to be a cancelled project that started during the PDP-1 design phase and the PDP-3 is said to have been built for the CIA, but there is limited information about it. The PDP-4 cost $65,000 (512,470.83 today) and had a slower memory and different packaging to lower cost.
  • PDP-5 Introduced

    DEC makes a computer off the first minicomputer LINC developed in the MIT Lincoln Labs. Striped down version of the LINC that sold for $27,000.
  • Mainframe PDP-6 Introduced

    Mainframe PDP-6 Introduced
    The first computer in DEC's mainframe series of computers that was intened for high-performance needs. It flopped compared to due to being considered inferioir to Honeywell and IBM counterparts. It was most important in the development of the TOPS Operating System. Picture: By Computer History Museum -, CC BY 3.0,
  • FLIP-FLOPS and PDP-7 Introduced

    FLIP-FLOPS and PDP-7 Introduced
    DEC redisigns the PDP-4 with Flip-chip Modules. Sold 120 of this model. Picture: By en:User:Toresbe - From english Wikipedia. Original description was: The Oslo PDP-7, before restoration started. I took the picture., CC SA 1.0,
  • PDP-8 Low Cost

    PDP-8 Low Cost
    Replacement for the PDP-5 as a lower cost computer with the Flip-Chip redesign. Sold for less than the PDP- 5 and the PDP8/S version sold for even less. Picture: Public Domain,
  • PDP-9 Introduced

    PDP-9 was a major upgrade from the PDP-1 and ran about twice as fast as the PDP-7. Inteded for use in large scale, sold at a price of 19,900 (about $139,000 today).
  • Period: to

    PDP-10 Production Period

  • The Man, The Myth, The PDP-10 Mainframe Introduced

    PDP-10 marketed in 1968 as the follow up to and retry at the mainframe market. Sold over 700 units by 1984 when it was discontinued.
  • PDP-15 and Floating Point Unit

    PDP-15 introduced as a redesign of the PDP-9. It ran quicker than the 9 even on its basic design and included a Floating Point Unit and a sperate input/output processor for better performance.
  • 16 bit PDP-11

    16 bit computer that was designed for simpler interfacing.
  • Ken Olsen Rejects First 2 Prototype Minicomputers

    Researchers present the first 2 minicomputer to DEC but president Ken Olsen decides not to proceed.
  • Virtual Adress eXtentsion

    Extenstion of the PDP-11 architecture that changed from 16 bit to 32 bit and added a complete virtual memory system with simple paging and memory protection.
  • VAX-11/780's

    First computer to use the VAX architecture, known as the VAX superminicomputer.
  • Relation Databases

    During their period of greatest success, DEC diversifies into making relational databases which can potentially save development time of computer software.
  • Introduction of Networking and Cluster Computing

    DEC launches first 10 MBit Ethernet which allows for networking and VAXcluster which gives customers the abillity to combine computing and storage power of individual computers instead of buying one large computer.
  • Fifth Company to Registar .com Adress

    DEC registars the server
  • Period: to

    Major Sell-Offs of DEC Products

    Most of DECs properties were sold to many different companies.
  • First Lay-offs, 120,000 Employed to 90,000

  • DECchip 21064 Processor and Alphaseries Computers

    DEC introduces the first implementation fo the Alpha instruction set.
  • Board of Directors Forces Ken Olsen to Resign

    After missing major market shifts from mainframes to desktop computers in the 1980's, DEC's board of directors forces Ken Olsen to resign his position at DEC due to his failure to predict these changes and poor judgement on the market.
  • Decline of DEC

    DEC reports despite the best efforts of the new CEO Robert Palmer, DEC loses $260.5 million in its first quarter and over 2.8 billion by the end of 1992.
  • DEC Reorganization and Most Profitable Time in Years

    Robert Palmer presents reorganization strategy and weeks later DEC announces most successful profits in years.
  • Rights to PDP-11 Sold to Mentec

  • DEC Sold to Compaq

    What was left of the DEC company was sold to Compaq and was considered the largest merger of a computer company at the time.