1944 - 1971
1972 - 1981
1981 - 1990
1990 - 1998
Intel introduces its 200-KHz 8008 chip, the first 8-bit microprocessor.
Atari is founded and ships Pong, the first commercial video game.
Canada's Automatic Electronic Systems introduces the world's first programmable word processor.
Bill Gates and Paul Allen form the Traf-O-Data company.
5.25 inch diskettes first appear.
The first prototype Alto workstation computer is turned on at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center.
Design work is completed on the Micral, the first non-kit computer based on a microprocessor.
The term "microcomputer" first appears in print, in reference to the Micral.
Gary Kildall writes a simple operating system in his PL/M language, called CP/M.
IBM introduces the IBM 3340 hard disk unit, known as the Winchester.
Scelbi Computer Consulting Company offers the first computer kit in the U.S. using a microprocessor.
Bob Metcalfe invents the Ethernet connectivity system.
Intel releases its 2-MHz 8080 chip, an 8-bit microprocessor.
Bravo, the first WYSIWIG program, is developed for the Xerox Alto computer.
Lauren Solomon, 12 year old daughter of Les Solomon, suggests the name "Altair" for the microcomputer.
Railway Express loses Ed Robert's only prototype Altair computer.
Popular Electronics publishes an article by MITS announcing the Altair 8800 computer.
Motorola introduces its 6800 chip, an 8-bit microprocessor.
Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie develop the C programming language.
RCA releases the 1802 processor, running at a speedy 6.4 MHz.
Bill Gates and Paul Allen license their newly written BASIC to MITS.
Gates and Allen's Traf-O-Data company is renamed Micro-Soft.
Heiser opens the first retail computer store in the USA called "The Computer Store".
IBM's Entry Level Systems unit unveils "Project Mercury", the IBM 5100 Portable Computer.
The first issue of Byte magazine is published.
Zilog is founded.
Intel introduces the 5-MHz 8085 microprocessor.
Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak form the Apple Computer Company, on April Fool's Day.
Wang Laboratories announces a word-processing system using advanced computer technology.
The Apple I computer board is sold in kit form, and delivered to stores by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak.
Zilog releases the 2.5-MHz Z80.
The tradename "Microsoft" is registered.
Advanced Micro Devices and Intel sign a patent cross-license agreement, giving AMD the right to copy Intel's microcode.
U.S. Robotics is founded.
Apple Computer moves from Jobs' garage to an office in Cupertino.
Microsoft ships "Microsoft FORTRAN" for CP/M-based computers.
Radio Shack (a division of Tandy Corp.) announces the TRS-80 microcomputer.
Apple Computer releases Applesoft, a version of BASIC with floating-point capabilities.
Intel introduces the 4.77-MHz 8086 microprocessor.
Atari announces the Atari 400 and 800 personal computers.
Dennis Hayes begins Hayes Microcomputer Products.
Microsoft begins developing BASIC for the Intel 8086 processor.
Taito develops and releases the Space Invaders arcade game in Japan and arcade centers.
Magnavox releases the Odyssey2 cartridge-based console game system.
Apple Computer releases DOS 3.2.
Zilog ships samples of the 16-bit Z8000 processor.
Software Arts demonstrates VisiCalc at the 4th West Coast Computer Faire.
Intel introduces the 4.77-MHz 8088 microprocessor.
Bob Metcalfe founds 3Com Corporation.
CompuServe begins a service to computer hobbyists called MicroNET, offering bulletin boards, databases, and games.
Clive Sinclair creates Sinclair Research.
Motorola's 68000 16-bit microprocessor appears.
Personal Software releases VisiCalc for the Apple II.
Atari develops the Asteroids computer game.
Alan Shugart founds Seagate Technologies, a maker of hard disk drives.
Atari founder Nolan Bushnell leaves the company, to manage Pizza Time Theatre.
IBM introduces the IBM 3800 laser printer.
Hayes Microcomputer Products introduces the 110/300 baud Micromodem II for the Apple II, for US$380.
Morrow Designs advertises the 26 MB DISCUS M26 hard drive system for US$5000
Microsoft begins development on an 8086 version of AT&T's Unix operating system.
Sinclair Research announces the ZX80 computer in the North American market.
Microsoft Corp. announces its first hardware product, the Z-80 SoftCard for the Apple II.
Satellite Software International ships WordPerfect 1.0 for Data General minicomputers.
Seattle Computer Products decides to make their own disk operating system (DOS).
Apple Computer introduces the Apple III at the National Computer Conference.
Universal Data Systems announces the 202LP 1200 bps modem.
Seagate Technologies announces the first Winchester 5.25-inch hard disk drive.
Steve Ballmer joins Microsoft.
Radio Shack introduces the TRS-80 Pocket Computer.
IBM representatives meet with Microsoft's Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer to talk about Microsoft products.
IBM meets with Microsoft again, and shows plans for Project Chess, a personal computer.
QDOS 0.10 (Quick and Dirty Operating System) is shipped by Seattle Computer Products.
Microsoft announces the Microsoft XENIX OS, a portable and commercial version of Unix.
Microsoft's Paul Allen contacts Seattle Computer Products, asking for the rights to sell SCP's DOS.
Apple Computer becomes a publicly held company.
Seattle Computer Products renames QDOS to 86-DOS, releasing it as version 0.3.
Philips and Sony create the CD-Audio standard for optical disk storage of digital audio.
Intel announces the iAPX-432 32-bit microprocessor.
Intel introduces the 8087 math coprocessor.
CompuServe merges with H&R Block, and renames MicroNET to CompuServe Information Service.
Sony Electronics introduces the 3.5 inch floppy disk and drive.
Panasonic and Quasar unveil hand-held computers, made by Matsushita.
Commodore announces the VIC-20.
The director of Canada' Radiation Protection Bureau declares that video display terminals carry no radiation hazard.
Microsoft reorganizes into Microsoft Incorporated.
Microsoft buys all rights to DOS from Seattle Computer Products, and the name MS-DOS is adopted.
IBM introduces its first desktop computer, the Datamaster.
The first IBM PCs roll off the assembly lines.
IBM announces the IBM 5150 PC personal computer, in New York.
Apple Computer introduces its first hard drive, the 5MB ProFile, for US$3500.
Novell Data Systems ships the Novell Data Management Computer, with the ability to share its hard drive space with other computers.
Hayes Microcomputer Products advertises the Smartmodem 300, which becomes the industry standard.
College professor James Clark found Silicon Graphics.
Intel and Advanced Micro Devices agree to collaborate on the design and production of new products.