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This Day in Computer History: December 12

written by: Pipedreamergrey•edited by: Michele McDonough•updated: 12/14/2008

Today marks the anniversary of the earliest seeds of CERN and Apple Computer's initial public offering, the most successful in history. Read 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


    At the European Cultural Conference, a proposal submitted by French physicist Louis de Broglie outlining the creation of an European Institute of Nuclear Physics for the purpose of keeping pace with the United State's atomic research was adopted by the attending one hundred fifty European leaders. Its adoption would eventually lead to the founding of the Centre Européenne de Recherche Nucléaire (CERN), the organization that eventually developed the technology underlying the future Internet.


    Apple Computer held its initial public offering (IPO) on the NASDAQ market. Under the stock symbol “AAPL," the company sold 4.6 million shares within a matter of minutes at a price of twenty-two dollars per share. By the close of business, the value of the stock rose to twenty-nine dollars per share, leaving the IPO the most successful since the 1956 launch of Ford Motor. The IPO left over forty of the company's thousand employees and investors millionaires, including co-founder Steve Jobs who, as the company's largest shareholder, held stock valued at $217 million.

    The Copyright Act was updated to extend the same protections to computer programs as those already existing for literary works.


    The hard drive of the first FidoNet host, run by the founder of FidoNet, Tom Jennings, crashed, but Jennings continued operating the Bulletin Board System on the computer's two floppy drives.


    Monks in Thailand held a ceremony to pray for success on the behalf of the new Texas Instruments processor manufacturing plant that was being built in Thailand.


    America Online announced that it had exceeded 26 million subscribers globally.

    Intel announced that it had developed the smallest, fastest Complementary Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) transistor to date. Each transistor was three atomic layers thick and thirty nanometers. The company projected that the new technology would allow it to place over four hundred million transistors on a single processor with a clock speed of ten Gigahertz in the future.


    Advanced Micro Devices released the 1600 MHz Athlon MP 1900+ processor, featuring a 256 KB Level-2 Cache and a 266 MHz Front-Side Bus.


    Advanced Micro Devices released the 2800 MHz Athlon 64 X2 5400+ processors, featuring two 512 KB Level-2 Caches and 1000 MHz HyperTransport.

    Advanced Micro Devices released the 2800 MHz Athlon 64 X2 5600+ processors, featuring two 1024 KB Level-2 Caches and 1000 MHz HyperTransport.

    Hewlett-Packard announced the acquisition of the data warehousing firm Knightsbridge Solutions in Chicago, Illinois.

    Officials at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) announced that a hacker had cracked into a database containing the personal data of over 800,000 students and employees, including social security numbers. It was largest university security breach in U.S. history.

    Red Hat Software developer Red Hat began trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “RHT" after leaving the NASDAQ on which it had initially gone public in August 1999. The purpose of the move, according to the company's Chief Financial Officer Charlie Peters, was made in order to increase the company's visibility among investors and to reduce its future trading volatility.

    Version 2.3 of the BitTornado GUI Torrentflux 2.3 is released.