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This Day in Computer History: October 15

written by: Pipedreamergrey•edited by: Rebecca Scudder•updated: 10/16/2008

Today marks the anniversary of a string of releases from Apple Computer and the publication of the first manual for Fortran. Read about these events and more in "This Day in Computer History", a chronology of notable events in the computer, ecommerce, and software industries on this day in history.

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    This Day in Computer History


    The first reference manual for the FORTRAN programming language was published ahead of the release of the language's first compiler. It was sixty pages in length and relatively brief in its content, with a large font and wide margins.


    The first academic paper written on the Unix operating system is presented by Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson at Purdue University during the fourth ACM "Symposium on Operating Systems Principles." It was later published in the July 1974 issue of the ACM's journal.


    IBM announced Token Ring network and PC Network software that had been developed in cooperation with Texas Instruments (TI). Network transmission speed on the new Token Ring, which used ordinary telephone wiring, was 4 Mbps, and it cost about eight hundred dollars per computer to install.


    The first file-infecting virus in history, the Jerusalem DOS file virus, was first detected in Jerusalem, Israel. Upon infection, Jerusalem becomes a memory resident that infects every executable file run.


    Apple Computer officially discontinues production of its Macintosh Plus line.

    Apple Computer introduced its new Macintosh Classic, featuring an 8 MHz Motorola 68000 microprocessor, an integrated 9-inch B/W monitor, and a 1.4 MB floppy drive. Price: $1,000

    Apple Computer introduced its Macintosh LC, featuring a 16 MHz Motorola 68020 microprocessor, 2MB RAM, a 40 MB hard drive, and 1.4 MB SuperDrive. Price: $2,400

    Apple Computer introduced its Macintosh IIsi, featuring a 20 MHz Motorola 68030 microprocessor, 2MB RAM, a 40MB hard drive, a video port, and a 1.4 MB SuperDrive. Price: $3,769 or $4,569 upgraded to 5 MB RAM and 80 MB hard drive.

    Intel released the 200 MHz 80386SL processor.


    Apple discontinues the Apple IIGS, the last Apple II computer still on the market.

    John Sculley resigned from Apple Computer and goes on to sign with the Spectrum Information Technologies wireless communications firm the next day.


    A member of the ANSI artscene groups Fuel and iCE named Levi Dedi or “The Night Daemon” online committed suicide by jumping from the window of his family's ninth story apartment in Israel. Dedi had been accepted into the tight-knit artscene community after organizing a competition for the iCE group's demo party, but by October, he had largely withdrawn from his own family. After his mother disabled outgoing call on the apartment's phone line, cutting him off from the Internet and his friends, Dedi spiraled into depression before ultimately taking his own life.


    IBM announced the world's highest capacity hard drive, the 10,000 RPM Ultrastar 72ZX, which boasts a 73GB storage capacity in a casing the size of a paperback novel. It also had the greatest data density in history, with ability to store over seven billion bits per square inch.


    Apple Computer announced that its QuickTime 6 had been downloaded over twenty-five million times.


    Version 9.0 of the SUSE Linux operating system was released under a General Public License.


    The total amount of files shared over the Kazaa network surpassed the 54 petabtyes (PB) mark.