Times Online: Top 25 days in computing history

“The path to modern-day computing is longer than many suspect and strewn with interesting nuggets of information,” Holden Frith blogs for Times Online’s “Tech Central.”

Top 25 Days in Computing History:

• December 23, 1834: Charles Babbage announces the analytical engine
• October 22, 1925: The transistor is patented
• January 1, 1939: Hewlett-Packard is founded, giving birth to Silicon Valley
• November 25, 1943: Colossus comes to life
• February 14, 1946: ENIAC is unveiled

• December 1954: Casio’s prototype desktop calculator
• September 4, 1956: The launch of the IBM 305 RAMAC (5MB hard drive weighed one ton)
• October 29, 1969: The dawning of the internet era
• November-December 1971: The first e-mail is sent
• April 16, 1977: Apple II heralds the age of the home computer

• May 22, 1980: The birth of Pac-Man
• April 3, 1981: The first portable computer (Osborne 1)
• August 12, 1981: IBM launches the “PC”
• March 3, 1981: The BBC Microcomputer
January 24, 1984: Apple Mac popularises the graphical user interface

• November 13, 1990: Tim Berners-Lee writes the first web page (on a NeXT Computer, forerunner to Apple’s Mac OS X)
• March 14, 1993: Mosaic opens up the web
• March 16, 1995: The first Wiki is announced
• July 4, 1996: Hotmail arrives (launched in 1996; acquired by Microsoft in 1997 for an estimated $400 million)
• May 11, 1997: Machine takes on man, and wins (IBM’s Deep Blue defeats Garry Kasparov, the Russian grandmaster, in Chess)

• November 18, 1997: Wi-fi standards laid down (Apple’s iBook G3 was the first mainstream computer with integrated wireless networking, July 21, 1999)
• September 7, 1998: Google founded
• June 1, 1999: Shawn Fanning releases Napster
• January 1, 2000: The world continues (Y2K fizzle)
• February 15, 2005: YouTube comes online

• July 11, 2008: Apple launches the iPhone App Store

MacDailyNews Take: Uh, Holden, that was 26 days, but that’s easily forgiven as your list is refreshingly and rightfully Microsoft-free.

Full article here.


  1. Yes! A very good list. I do think that iPhone would have earned a place on that list, if made ten years from now. This is the dawn of pocket computers and Apple made it happen.

    “It’s an iPod – It’s a phone – It’s a web browser – It’s the iPhone” Steve said.

    Now we have the AppStore and we have just begun!… ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

  2. First programmable computer. The Z1 originally created by Germany’s Konrad Zuse in his parents living room in 1936 to 1938 is considered to be the first electrical binary programmable computer.

    You can’t have this kind of list without mentioning the name, Alan Turing.

    Then of course, who can forget the inventor of the internet? — Ta Dah ALGORE.

  3. Very important in the history of computing but usually left off these lists is the Atanasoff-Berry Computer. It was the world’s first electronic digital computer built by John Vincent Atanasoff and Clifford Berry at Iowa State University during 1937-42

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