Showing posts from June, 2015

How Compaq, rather than Apple, changed the world

Today when you browse the pages of an online PC retailer for a new laptop it's pretty much a given that you get a free copy of Windows and it runs all the software you would expect. Unless you are one of the two percent of geeks that goes and installs Linux or a brand concious Apple buyer (five percent) you PC is compatible with a huge library of software that works 'out of the box'. This wasn't always so. Back in 1981 when the IBM PC was launched every PC ran a different operating system and software releases had to be customised to work with everyone. The IBM PC, because it was made by IBM, became the business users choice and they locked up the market. However in rushing to make the PC they used off the shelf hardware that could easily be built by other people. So the issue became whether anyone could take advantage of the sudden market created for common software. In Texas a group of former TI (Texas Instruments) engineers felt that they could build a new cl