|Konrad Zuse, a German engineer, completes the first general
purpose progammable calculator in 1941. He pioneers the use of binary math and boolean logic in electronic calculation.
Colossus, a British computer used for code-breaking, is operational by December
ENIAC, or Electronic Numerical Integrator Analyzor and Computer, is developed by the Ballistics Research Laboratory in Maryland to assist in the
preparation of firing tables for artillery. It is built at the University of Pennsylvania's Moore School of Electrical Engineering and completed in November 1945.
Bell Telephone Laboratories develops the
transistor in 1947.
UNIVAC, the Universal Automatic Computer (pictured below), is developed in 1951. It can store
12,000 digits in random access mercury-delay lines.
EDVAC, for Electronic Discrete
Variable Computer, is completed under contract for the Ordinance Department in
In 1952 G.W. Dummer, a radar expert
from the British Royal Radar Establishment, proposes that electronic equipment be
manufactured as a solid block with no connecting wires. The prototype he builds
doesn't work and he receives little support for his research.
Texas Instruments and Fairchild
semiconductor both announce the integrated circuit in 1959.
The IBM 360 is introduced in April of
1964 and quickly becomes the standard institutional mainframe computer. By the
mid-80s the 360 and its descendents will have generated more than $100 billion in
revenue for IBM.