Computer History 1970s-2000s

COMPUTERS Development 




Fourth-generation computers, built with chips that use LSI (large-scale integration) arrive.While the chips used in 1965 contained as many as 1,000 circuits, the LSI chip contains as many as 15,000.


Dr. Ted Hoff of Intel Corporation develops a microprocessor, or micro programmable computer chip, the Intel 4004.


Ethernet, the first local area network (LAN),is developed at Xerox PARC (Palo Alto Research Center) by Robert Metcalf. The LAN allows computers to communicate and share software, data, and peripherals.Initially designed to link minicomputers,Ethernet will be extended to personal computers.


Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak build the first Apple computer. A subsequent version, the Apple II, is an immediate success. Adopted by elementary schools, high schools, and colleges, for many students the Apple II is their first contact with the world of computers.


VisiCalc, a spreadsheet program written by Bob Frankston and Dan Bricklin, is introduced. Originally written to run on Apple II computers, VisiCalc will be seen as the most important reason for the acceptance of personal computers in the business world. The first public online information services, CompuServe and the Source, are founded.


IBM offers Microsoft Corporation co-founder,Bill Gates, the opportunity to develop the operating system for the soon-to-be announced IBM personal computer. With the development of MS-DOS, Microsoft achieves tremendous growth and success.Alan Shugart presents the Winchester hard drive, revolutionizing storage for personal computers.


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 market and becomes the personal computer of choice in business.


3,275,000 personal computers are sold,almost 3,000,000 more than in 1981.Compaq, Inc. is founded to develop and market IBM-compatible PCs. Hayes introduces the 300 bps smart modem. The modem is an immediate success.


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 personal computers.


Several personal computers utilizing the powerful Intel 80386 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 vendor.


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 80386 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 True Type 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® processor 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.


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 kernel, a UNIX-like operating system that here leases free across the Internet for further enhancement by other programmers.


Sun Micro systems 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 hotter Internet technologies.


U.S. Robotics introduces Palm Pilot, a hand held personal organizer. The Palm Pilot’s user friendliness and low price make it a standout next to more expensive personal digital assistants (PDAs). An innovative technology called web tv combines television and the Internet by providing viewers with tools to navigate the Web.


Deep Blue, an IBM supercomputer, defeats world chess champion Gary Kasparov in a six-game chess competition. Millions of people follow the nine-day long rematch on IBM’s Web site. Fifty million users are connected to the Internet and World Wide Web.


More than 10,000,000 people take up telecommuting, which is the capability of working at home and communicating with an office via computer. Increasingly more firms embrace telecommuting to helincrease productivity, reduce absenteeism,and provide greater job satisfaction. E-commerce, or electronic commerce — the marketing of goods and services over the Internet — booms. Companies such as Dell, E*TRADE, and spur online shopping, allowing buyers to obtain everything from hardware and software to financial and travel services, insurance,automobiles, books, and more


Intel releases its Pentium® III processor,which provides enhanced multimedia capabilities. U.S. District Judge Thomas Pen field Jackson rules in the antitrust law suit brought by the Department of Justice and 19 states that Microsoft used its monopoly power to stifle competition.


Shawn Fanning, 19, and his company,Napster, turn the music industry upside down by developing software that allows computer users to swap music files with one another without going through a centralized file server. The Recording Industry of America, on behalf of five media companies, sues Napster for copyright infringement.


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