1978

The Apple Disk II

The Apple Disk II

Apple Computer introduces the Disk II, a 5.25-inch floppy disk drive linked to the Apple II by cable. Price: $495, including controller card.

1979

The Intel 8088

The Intel 8088

A pivotal sale to IBM’s personal computer division makes the Intel 8088 processor the brains of IBM’s new hit product: the IBM PC.

VisiCalc

VisiCalc

Harvard MBA candidate Daniel Bricklin and programmer Robert Frankston develop VisiCalc, the program that made a business machine of the personal computer, for the Apple II.

1980

First 5.25-inch hard disk

First 5.25-inch hard disk

Seagate makes the first 5.25-inch hard disk. It has a capacity of 5MB spread over four platters, equivalent to almost 1,300 cartridges of Atari’s Pac-Man game. Price: $600 ($120 per megabyte). It fits in the same space as the floppy disk drive.

Sony 3.5-inch Floppy Disk

Sony 3.5-inch Floppy Disk

Sony Electronics introduces the 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, which is double-sided, double-density, and holds up to 720K formatted.

1981

IBM introduces its personal computer, which uses Intel’s 16-bit 8086 processor.

MS-DOS

MS-DOS

Microsoft’s new Disk Operating System (MS-DOS) is introduced. It requires less than 160K of disk space.

The IBM 3380 Hard Drive

The IBM 3380 Hard Drive

The first hard drive to have more than 1GB in capacity was the IBM 3380 (it could store 2.52GB). It was the size of a refrigerator, weighed 550 pounds (250 kg), and the price when it was introduced ranged from $81,000 to $142,400.

1982

Compaq introduces the first IBM PC clone computer.

The Intel 80286

The Intel 80286

The Intel 80286 is the first Intel processor that can run all the software written for its predecessor. This software compatibility remains a hallmark of Intel’s family of microprocessors. Within 6 years of its release, an estimated 15 million 286-based personal computers are installed all around the world.

Lotus 1-2-3

Lotus 1-2-3

Mitch Kapor develops the spreadsheet program Lotus 1-2-3, greatly stimulating sales of the IBM PC.

The Drivetec 320 Floppy Drive

Drivetec annouces the Drivetec 320 Superminifloppy, offering 3.33MB unformatted capacity on a 5.25-inch drive.

The Compact Disc

The Compact Disc

The compact disc comes out. The first commercially available CD player, the iconic Sony CDP-101 was priced as high as $1,000. The CD’s unofficial arrival came with the release of Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms album in 1985. By 1988, CD sales eclipsed vinyl, and overtook the cassette in 1991.

The Iomega Floppy Disk Drive

The Iomega Floppy Disk Drive

Iomega begins production of the 10, a 10MB 8-inch floppy-disk drive using Bernoulli technology.

Amdisk-III Floppy Disk

Amdisk-III Floppy Disk

Amdek releases the Amdisk-III Micro-Floppy-disk Cartridge system. It houses two 3-inch floppy drives designed by Hitachi/Matsuhita/Maxell.

Tabor TC500 Floppy Disk Drive

Tabor TC500 Floppy Disk Drive

Tabor demonstrates a 3.25-inch floppy disk drive, the Model TC500 Drivette. Unformatted capacity is up to 500KB on a single side.

Davong DS-501 Disk Drive

Davong DS-501 Disk Drive

At the West Coast Computer Faire, Davong Systems introduces its 5MB Winchester Disk Drive for the IBM PC, priced at $1,995.

The Macintosh

The Macintosh

A prototype Macintosh arrives at Microsoft to aid in development of its application.

1983

“Man Of The Year”

“Man Of The Year”

Personal Computer is Time’s “Man of the Year”.

Microsoft Windows 1.01

Microsoft Windows 1.01

Microsoft unveils Microsoft Windows, an extension of the MS-DOS operating system that provides a graphical operating environment.