This Day in Computer History: September 23

Written by:  Pipedreamergrey • Edited by: Michele McDonough
Updated Sep 25, 2008

Today marks the anniversary of the first release of what will be Mozilla's Firefox. Read about it 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.

This Day in Computer History


During the International Broadcasting Convention held in London, England, the BBC inaugurated a two-year government-sanctioned trial of the Ceefax teletext system, one of the earliest forerunners of the internet. Ceefax broadcast news and financial bulletins five times a day via channels normally reserved for subtitles. The system's initial capacity was roughly thirty pages or screens of data.

Philips acquired the American electronics manufacturer Magnavox to form what is today one of the largest electronics companies in the world.


Rod Black entered into a non-exclusive arrangement to license the 86-DOS operating system to Microsoft for ten thousand dollars. The fee gave Microsoft the right to distribute 86-DOS to any number of end-users and to further sublicense the system to computer manufacturers for an additional ten thousand dollars, or fifteen thousand dollars when providing the third-party with the system's source code.


Apple Computer filed suit against Steve Jobs, alleging that Jobs' departure from the company with several key employees had been pre-meditated.


At the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference, Microsoft released the first beta test of Windows NT 5.0.

IBM announced the IBM WorkPad handheld computer, featuring 1MB RAM. Price: US $399


Intel warned computer manufacturers to delay shipments of computers with Pentium III CPUs featuring 820 chipsets and Rambus DRAM, after the discovery of unresolved application issues that lead to system failures.


Dave Hyatt and Blake Ross released the first public version of their ground-breaking web browser Mozilla Firefox through the Mozilla Corporation as ”Phoenix 0.1.″ Due to trademark conflicts with Phoenix Technologies and copyright conflicts with the Firebird free database software project, the name of the system was later changed. The release came in response to what Hyatt and Ross perceived as feature creep in Netscape and software bloat in Mozilla's earlier browser. When version 1.0 was finally released on Novermber 9, 2004, it was a run-away success.


In Berlin, Germany, the GPL Violations Project won a lawsuit brought against D-Link Germany GmbH alleging that the company distributed portions of the Linux kernel on one of its network storage products in violation of the software's GNU General Public License (GPL). D-Link initially responded to the suit by claiming that the GPL wasn't legally binding. However, the case disproves that notion and set a crucial precedent for open source advocates everywhere. As a result of the court's ruling, D-Link agreed to cease and desist from distributing the infringing product.

Microsoft released an interim build of Windows Vista to its beta testers.

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