Computer History

Timeline created by hmh5093
  • Jan 1, 1300

    Abacus

    Abacus
    Picture Used in ancient civilizations and consists of beads, representing a quantity, mounted on rods within a rectangular frame.
  • Period:
    Jan 1, 1300
    to

    Manual Calculator

    A device that helps solve mathematical calculations but does not contain sophisticated built-in algorithms.
  • Napier's Bones

    Was created by John Napier that could be used to perform mathematical calculations by manipulating numbered rods.
  • Slide Rule

    Was invented by William Oughtred that uses John Napier's logarithms to perform complex engineering and scientific calculations.
  • Schickard's Calculator

    An early mechanical calulator consisting of a series of gears and spokes representing numerical values.
  • Period: to

    Mechanical Calculators

    A machine capable of implementing algorithms used to solve mathematical calculations.
  • Pascaline

    An early mechanical calculator capable of performing addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication.
  • Leibniz Calculator

    A mechanical calculator capable of performing the four arithmetic functions that helped develop the technology for the first commercially successful calculator.
  • Difference Engine

    Difference Engine
    Difference Engine A mechanical calculator design created by Charles Babbage that was to use steam power for fully automatic operation. It was never built.
  • Analytical Engine

    A mechanical calculator designed by Charles Babbage that included memory and a programmable processor, and is widely regarded as the most important ancestor to modern computer design.
  • de Colmar's Arithmometer

    The first commercially successul, mass-produced mechanical calculator.
  • Hollerith Tabulating Machine

    A mechanical calculator first used in 1890 by the U.S. Census Bureau that used punch cards to store data and led to the creation of IBM.
  • Atanasoff-Berry Computer

    Atanasoff-Berry Computer
    ABC An early electronic computer prototype that incorporated the use of vacuum tubes for data processing instead of mechanical switches.
  • Z3

    An early electronic computer prototype designed by Konrad Zuse that was the first to incorporate the use of binary numbers for data representation.
  • Harvard Mark 1

    An early computer prototype also known as the ASCC (Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator) developed by IBM that used decimal data representation rather than binary.
  • Period: to

    Computer Prototypes

    A prototype is an experimental device that typically must be further developed and perfected before going into production and becoming widely available.
  • Period: to

    First Generation Computers

    Characterized by their use of vacuum tubes to store individual bits of data. These vacuum tubes consume a lot of power and burn out quickly. Had custom application program, made to order for the specific task the computer was to perform. Used assembly language codes such as, LDA and JNZ.
  • COLOSSUS

    An early electronic computer prototype that used binary data representaton and was used during WWII to decode messages encrypted by ENIGMA.
  • ENIAC

    ENIAC
    ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer) An early electronic computer prototype that was designed for the U.S. Army for calculating trajectories.
  • UNIVAC

    The first commercially successful digital computer.
  • Period: to

    Second Generation Computers

    Used transistors instead of vacuum tubes which regulate current or voltage flow and act as a switch for electronic signals. These transistors are smaller, cheaper, more reliable, and less power hungry than vacuum tubes. Operating systems used in second generation computers were standardized for input, output, memory management, storege and other resource management activities. They used high-level languages such as COBOL and Fortran.
  • Period: to

    Third Generation Computers

    Characterized by using integrated circuits instead of transistors or vacuum tubes for data processing.
  • Period: to

    Personal Computers

  • Period: to

    Fourth Generation Computers

    Computers, such as today's personal computer, servers, and mainframes, that use a general purpose microprocessor for data processing.
  • Mark-8

    A microprocessor based computer system developed by Jonathan A. Titus in 1974 that helped lead to the development of personal computers.
  • MITS Altair

    The first commercial micrcomputer. It was based on the Intel 8080 processor and sold primarily to computer hobbyists.
  • Apple I

    An unassembled computer kit released in 1976 by Apple Computer Corp. for computer hobbyists.
  • Apple II

    A complete micrcomputer system developed by Apple Computer Corp. introduced in 1978 that helped broaden the personal computer market beyond hobbyists.
  • IBM PC

    IBM PC
    <a href='http://www.technologyevangelist.com/images/IBM-PC.jpg' >IBM</a >An early, commercially successful personal computer system that featured a 4.77 MHz Intel 8088 processor, 64 KB RAM, and a floppy disk drive. Ancestor to today's PCs.
  • Apple Macintosh

    Was one of the first commercially successful personal computer sold with graphical user interface software.