What Happened Today, January 19th

 
Apple Computer Introduces the Lisa
Apple began developing the Lisa computer in 1978. It was to feature a graphical user interface (GUI) and use the Motorola 68000 CPU. It was also the first Apple product with an internal hard drive. Steve Jobs, head of the project until he was taken off it in 1982, initially claimed LISA stood for Local Integrated System Architecture, though later admitted it was named for his daughter, Lisa Nicole Brennan. The Lisa sold for ten thousand dollars, which along with poor third party software availability and incompatibility with the Apple II, led to weak sales. In 1985, the Lisa was rebranded the Macintosh XL at less than half the cost of the original Lisa. Despite increased sales, the Mac XL was discontinued later in 1986, bringing an end to the Lisa story.

What Happened This Week

Nathaniel Rochester.
Nathaniel Rochester.
 
IBM's 701 Chief Architect Nathaniel Rochester Born
The chief architect of IBM's first scientific computer, the 701, is born. Nathaniel Rochester also developed the prototype for the IBM 702, the growing company's first commercial computer. Both machines signaled IBM’s slow transition from its lucrative punch card accounting business to markets based on developments in electronics resulting from World War II research and development.
 
The National Science Foundation Opens the National Center for Supercomputer Applications (NCSA).
The National Science Foundation opens the National Center for Supercomputer Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois, a national “Center of excellence” for research into high-performance computing. Its most famous alumnus, Marc Andreessen, invented his Mosaic browser for the network known as the World Wide Web while a student there, an effort he later transformed into the Netscape browser company.
SAGE Command Room
SAGE Command Room
 
SAGE Is Disclosed to the Public
The US government's Semi-Automatic Ground Environment (SAGE) is disclosed to the public. SAGE, an air defense system, linked hundreds of radar stations in the United States and Canada in the first large-scale computer communications network. With the increasing possibility of a large-scale bomber attack on the United States in the mid-1950s, it became evident that further improvements in the nation's defense capability were needed. MIT's Lincoln Laboratory was commissioned to develop an automated nationwide computer-based air defense system. SAGE was completed in the early 1960s, revolutionizing air defense and civilian air traffic control. In 1979, SAGE was replaced by Regional Operations Control Centers (ROCC).
Jerry Yang
Jerry Yang
 
Jerry Yang Resigns from Yahoo's Board
Amidst pressure from investors and other board members, Jerry Yang resigns from the board of Yahoo!, a company he co-founded. Yang, who served as the company’s CEO from June 2007 to January 2009, started Yahoo! with David Filo in 1994 while both were graduate students at Stanford University. Initially created as a web directory, Yahoo! grew quickly and became one of the most popular web portals in the late 1990s. In a move supported by Yang, Yahoo! rejected a multi-billion offer from Microsoft to take over the faltering corporation. A few years later, Yahoo! was worth less than half of Microsoft’s acquisition offer.
The Harvard Mark I
The Harvard Mark I
 
J.W. Bryce Outlines the Harvard Mark I
J.W. Bryce writes a memorandum formalizing IBM's development of a computing machine for Harvard: the Harvard Mark I, completed in 1944. The Harvard Mark I was the first fully automatic machine to be completed and computed three additions or subtractions a second; its memory stored 72 numbers. Several of J.W. Bryce's major inventions—high-speed multiplying, dividing, cross adding, the read-out, and the emitter—were utilized in the Harvard Mark I.
 
Apple Computer Introduces the Lisa
Apple began developing the Lisa computer in 1978. It was to feature a graphical user interface (GUI) and use the Motorola 68000 CPU. It was also the first Apple product with an internal hard drive. Steve Jobs, head of the project until he was taken off it in 1982, initially claimed LISA stood for Local Integrated System Architecture, though later admitted it was named for his daughter, Lisa Nicole Brennan. The Lisa sold for ten thousand dollars, which along with poor third party software availability and incompatibility with the Apple II, led to weak sales. In 1985, the Lisa was rebranded the Macintosh XL at less than half the cost of the original Lisa. Despite increased sales, the Mac XL was discontinued later in 1986, bringing an end to the Lisa story.
 
IBM's PS/2 Technology to be Cloned
A group of small computer companies announces that they have succeeded in making microprocessors and software that would eventually allow clones of IBM's PS/2 line of personal computers, which had recently been released. In response, IBM threatened legal action to protect its technology.