This Day in Computer History: November 18

This Day in Computer History

1963

IBM released the IBM 1231 optical mark page reader.

1970

Bill Gates began his career as a computer programmer in the computer labs of the Lakeside High School in Seattle, Washington. He and his friends formed the Lakeside Programmers Group. Together, they designed a payroll program for the local Information Sciences Inc. in exchange for what was very expensive time on the company’s PDP-10 system.

1977

A federal court rules that Microsoft had been within its rights to market its BASIC programming language and compilers to companies other than IBM, for which Microsoft had developed the software. Only months later, Microsoft would license BASIC to Commodore for its PET and TRS-80 computers.

1994

Arguments began in the case of US vs. David LaMacchia, in which David LaMacchia stood accused of Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud for allegedly operating the “Cynosure” bulletin board system (BBS) to host pirated software on Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) servers for six weeks. The prosecution doesn’t accuse LaMacchia of violating copyright or computer fraud statutes, choosing to charge him under a federal wire fraud statute that had been enacted in 1952 to prevent the use of telephone systems for interstate fraud. The case raised serious concerns over the government’s ability to prosecute computer crimes and issues regarding how the first amendment would apply to the internet. The case would spur legislators to close gaps in existing laws after it was later dismissed on December 29th.

1996

The COMDEX trade show was held in Las Vegas, Nevada. At the event, Microsoft announced its Windows CE 1.0 operating system for handheld computers. At the event Intel’s Andrew Grove predicted that by 2011, its processors would integrate one billion transistors to operate at 10 GHz.

Hewlett-Packard announced that it had received government approval for the International Cryptography Framework (ICF), an encryption framework it had developed to secure data passed across the Internet. Its adjustable levels of encryption would allow manufacturers to export the strongest encryption system approved by the US government to date.

1997

America Online (AOL) users experienced a third major service brownout in under a month. The service was down for five hours.

1998

A US District Judge issued a preliminary injunction ordering Microsoft to update Windows 98 and Internet Explorer to conform to Java programming language standards within ninety days and to discontinue its practice of labeling its products containing Java technology as “official” Java implementations.

At a press conference in New York City, Macy’s Department Store launches the largest ecommerce store ever created by an established brick-and-mortar retailer.

2002

Dell Computer introduced the Dell Axim X5 handheld computer at the COMDEX trade show. It featured a 300MHz Intel XScale processor, 32 MB SDRAM, a CompactFlash slot, and the Pocket PC 2002 operating system. Price: $249 – $349.

2003

Apple Computer introduced an iMac model with a twenty inch LCD display.

Apple Computer released updated Power Mac G5 systems. They featured processor sets ranging from a single 1.66 GHz to dual 2 GHz G5 processors and a choice of a 80 or 160 GB hard drive.

2006

Cray, Inc. released The Cray XT4 supercomputer.

This post is part of the series: A Chronology of Computer History for the Month of November: This Day in Computer History

This series provides a daily account of what happened on this day in the history of computing and technology. It discusses developments, breaking news, new releases and global implications that occurred as a result of these ground breaking events.
  1. This Day in Computer History: November 4
  2. This Day in Computer History: November 5
  3. This Day in Computer History: November 6
  4. This Day in Computer History: November 7
  5. This Day in Computer History: November 9
  6. This Day in Computer History: November 10
  7. This Day in Computer History: November 11
  8. This Day in Computer History: November 12
  9. This Day in Computer History: November 13
  10. This Day in Computer History: November 14
  11. This Day in Computer History: November 15
  12. This Day in Computer History: November 16
  13. This Day in Computer History: November 17
  14. This Day in Computer History: November 18
  15. This Day in Computer History: November 19
  16. This Day in Computer History: November 20
  17. This Day in Computer History: November 21
  18. This Day in Computer History: November 22
  19. This Day in Computer History: November 24
  20. This Day in Computer History: November 25
  21. This Day in Computer History: November 26
  22. This Day in Computer History: November 27
  23. This Day in Computer History: November 28
  24. This Day in Computer History: November 29
  25. This Day in Computer History: November 30