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Programming & The PC Revolution

Jan01: Programming & The PC Revolution

A DDJ Timeline


February 1975
Bill Gates and Paul Allen license their Basic to MITS.
March 1975
Homebrew Computing Club holds its first meeting.
September 1975
First issue of BYTE magazine is published.


January 1976
Dr. Dobb's Journal of Tiny BASIC Calisthenics & Orthodontia: Running Light Without Overbyte debuts, thanks to Dennis Allison and Bob Albrecht.
February 1976
Jim Warren joins DDJ as editor.
March 1976
Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs finish the computer circuit board they call the "Apple I."
August 1976
First article on cryptography appears in DDJ. Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak contributes first of several articles, "Floating Point Routines for the 6502."
September 1976
Macintosh creator Jef Raskin joins DDJ and publishes his first article. His author bio states, "He is well known for his heretical belief that people are more important than computers, and that computer systems should be designed to alleviate human frailties, rather than have the human succumb to the needs of the machine."
December 1976
Michael Shrayer writes the first word processor for microcomputers, the Electric Pencil. Steve Wozniak and Randy Wigginton demonstrate the first Apple II at the Homebrew Computer Club. Bill Gates drops out of Harvard.


January 1977
"Lawrence Livermore Lab's 8080 Basic," by John Dickenson, et al.
February 1977
Tom Pittman, one of the first software entrepreneurs for personal computers, writes an article advocating commercial over free software entitled "Free Software? Or—Support Your Local Software Vendor." In 1977, free software with source code was the norm within the microcomputer community, and publications like DDJ were the standard means of distribution. Ward Christensen, bulletin-board systems pioneer and coauthor of CBBS, contributes an article to DDJ on disassembling 8080 code. Bill Gates and Paul Allen form Microsoft. "An 8080 Disassembler Written in MITS 3.2 Basic," by Jef Raskin.
August 1977
Tandy/Radio Shack announces the TRS-80 microcomputer.
September 1977
"Computer Applications for the Handicapped," by Warren J. Dunning. "An Interactive Programming Language for Control of Robots," by Lichen Wang.


February 1978
Gary Kildall, computer pioneer and creator of PL/M and CP/M, writes "A Simple Technique for Static Relocation of Absolute Machine Code."
March 1978
Kenneth Bowles writes "Status of the UCSD Pascal Project." Steve Wozniak contributes his second DDJ article, this one entitled "Renumbering and Appending Basic Programs on the Apple-II Computer."
May 1978
First article on Forth appears in DDJ. Forth became a regular topic for many years, and resulted in several special issues devoted entirely to Forth. DDJ continues to publish articles about Forth today. "Proposed Standard for the S-100 Bus," by George Morrow and Howard Fullmer.
June/July 1978
"A Tiny Basic Extension Package," by Leor Zolman.
September 1978
"Lisp For the 6800," by Fritz van der Wateren.


April 1979
"Of Interest" section debuts, making it the second oldest running column in DDJ (the editorial being the first).
June/July 1979
Curt Noll and Laura Nickel describe how they used a computer to discover the 25th and 26th Mersenne Prime, one of the early and important contributions computers made to mathematics. It helped stir the controversy over whether real mathematicians used computers. Intel introduces the 8088 microprocessor.
November/December 1979
"Preliminary Programming Specs from the VDM-2/Graphic Display," by Lee Felsenstein.


March 1980
"Mathematical Typography," by Donald Knuth.
April 1980
"An Introduction to Algorithm Design," by Jon Bentley. The first issue devoted to algorithms. In addition to a reprinted article by Jon Bentley, the author of Programming Pearls and currently a contributing editor to DDJ, the first column devoted to algorithms appeared. In this column, Dennis Allison wrote about merge sorts.
May 1980
"The C Programming Language," by Dennis Ritchie, Brian Kernighan, et al. First issue devoted to the C programming language.
September 1980
Tim Paterson shows Microsoft his 86-DOS operating system written for the 8086. "A Runtime Library for the Small C Compiler," by Ron Cain.


August 1981
IBM announces its IBM Personal Computer.


July 1982
"CP/M-86 vs MSDOS: A Technical Comparison," by Dave Cortesi. "Graphics on IBM's Personal Computer," by Ray Duncan.
December 1982
James Hendrix released the Small-C Compiler Version 2.


January 1983
First article on the Ada programming language appears. Roger Gregory writes about Ted Nelson's Xanadu project in "Xanadu: Hypertext From the Future."
July 1983
DDJ breaks 100 pages for the first time. AT&T Bell Labs designs C++.
October 1983
Anthony Skjellum starts a bimonthly column on C and UNIX called "C/UNIX Programmer's Notebook."
November 1983
Borland releases Turbo Pascal.


January 1984
Apple introduces the Macintosh.
March 1984
"RSA: A Public Key Cryptography System," by C.E. Burton. The first article on the RSA public key cryptography algorithm.
May 1984
First article on Modula-2 appears.
June 1984
DDJ reviews Turbo Pascal.
December 1984
First special issue devoted to the UNIX operating system.


January 1985
Apple had been widely criticized for the Macintosh's limited memory and lack of expansion capability. Thomas Lafleur and Susan Raab resolve this with their article, "Fatten Your Mac," with step-by-step, unauthorized instructions for increasing the RAM in Macintosh computers to 512 KB.
February 1985
"Tiny Basic for the 6800," by Gordon Brandly
March 1985
DDJ's first article on Prolog appears: "Tour of Prolog," by David Cortesi. Allen Holub's "C Chest" replaces Skjellum's "C/UNIX Programmer's Notebook." Richard Stallman publishes his GNU Manifesto under the title "Realizable Fantasies."
May 1985
"A Compiler Written in Prolog," by G.A. Edgar.
November 1985
Microsoft ships Windows 1.0. "The Software Designer," by Paul Heckel.
December 1985
First article on windowing operating environments appears.


January 1986
Bob Blum's long-running "CP/M Exchange" column finally retires. DDJ is available electronically for the first time on Compuserve.
October 1986
Article on programming the 80386 is published.


January 1987
Issue devoted to programming the 68000 CPU. Article on the OS-9 operating system appears.
February 1987
Ernest Tello premiers a column on artificial intelligence. This wide-ranging, but unfortunately short-lived column, first introduced object-oriented programming to DDJ readers.
April 1987
Neural networks had come back into vogue five years earlier, when then Caltech scientist John Hopfield introduced his Hopfield networks. The first article on neural networks in DDJ appeared in this issue.


March 1988
Issue devoted to object-oriented programming.
May 1988
Robert Carr, creator of the Framework integrated software package and the PenPoint operating system, contributes article, "Developing for the User." Michael Swaine's "Programming Paradigms" column debuts.
August 1988
Al Stevens takes over Allen Holub's C column, which is renamed "C Programming."


February 1989
Rabindra Kar and Kent Porter publish "Rhealstone: A Real-time Benchmarking Proposal." Jeff Duntemann begins his popular "Structured Programming" column.
March 1989
Jim Gettys publishes an article on X Windows, "Network Windowing Using the X Window System." Tim Berners-Lee proposes the World Wide Web.
September 1989
Michael Abrash and Dan Illowsky publish "Roll Your Own Minilanguages with Mini-Interpreters."
November 1989
Anders Hejlsberg, author of Turbo Pascal and architect of Microsoft's C# language, publishes "Container Object Types in Turbo Pascal."
December 1989
Bertrand Meyer publishes "Writing Correct Software With Eiffel."


February 1990
Tim Paterson, original author of MS-DOS, coauthors "Managing Multiple Data Segments Under Microsoft Windows," his first article for DDJ.
October 1990
Al Williams publishes the first segment of his two-part article "Roll Your Own DOS Extender."
November 1990
The League for Programming Freedom publishes an article warning of the dangers of software patents.


January 1991
William and Lynne Jolitz start a multipart series "Porting UNIX to the 386." Their work—a port of BSD UNIX to the 80386 architecture—resulted in 386BSD, which eventually spawned FreeBSD and NetBSD. Rob Pike, Dave Presotto, Ken Thompson, and Howard Trickey write about the Plan 9 OS. Lotus founder Mitchell Kapor writes, "A Software Design Manifesto."
April 1991
DDJ publishes articles on neural nets and genetic algorithms
September 1991
David Betz presents a tiny, object-oriented language called "Bob." Bruce Schneier publishes "One-Way Hash Functions," his first of many articles for DDJ.


April 1992
Mac Cody writes "The Fast Wavelet Transform." Ron Avitzur publishes "Your Own Handprinting Engine."
June 1992
DDJ steps into the world of the "Personal Supercomputer" with Ian Hirschsoln's three-part article.
October 1992
Looking toward today's e-commerce, Brad Cox writes about electronic distribution of software objects and pay-per-use software.
December 1992
DDJ looks at new data types, including spatial data and sound. Dick Gabriel examines persistence in a programming environment.


January 1993
64-bit programming first appears in DDJ.
September 1993
Andrew Schulman publishes "Examining the Windows AARD Detection Code," foreshadowing Microsoft's anti-trust troubles.
October 1993
First article on the Perl programming language appears. Eric Bina and Marc Andreessen develop the Mosaic web browser. Intel announces the Pentium microprocessor.


February 1994
Kent Beck, Smalltalk guru and inventor of the Extreme Programming methodology, introduces design patterns.
April 1994
Scott Guthery examines algorithms for mobile computing.
May 1994
Richard Burgess presents "MMURTL: Your Own 32-bit Operating System."
December 1994
First article on the World Wide Web and HTML appears.
Special Issue 1994
Devoted to interoperable objects, with introductory and in-depth articles on COM, CORBA, and other technologies, this issue quickly became one of DDJ's most popular. One of the contributors was Joe Firmage, who recently gained notoriety for his views on UFOs.


January 1995
Ron Rivest publishes an article on the RC5 encryption algorithm.
March 1995
DDJ awards its first Excellence in Programming Awards to Linux creator Linus Torvalds and STL author Alexander Stepanov.
June 1995
Mark Coast and Terry Mellon introduce their software methodology in "Constructing Operational Specifications."
July 1995
DDJ publishes first article on the PNG graphics file format
August 1995
Arthur van Hoff publishes the first technical article on the Java programming language, called "Java and Internet Programming."
December 1995
Marc Najork's "Visual Programming in 3-D" is one of the first articles on visual languages and the future of software development.


January 1996
Ian Goldberg and David Wagner write about a security flaw in the Netscape browser.
March 1996
Andy Yuen presents "A Tiny Preemptive Multitasking Forth."
April 1996
Peter Danzig writes about the Harvest object cache.
August 1996
Mark Russinovich, Bryce Cogswell, and Andrew Schulman uncover the SoftRAM 95 scam.
September 1996
Alan Cooper, creator of Visual Basic, writes an article entitled, "Goal-Directed Software Design."


August 1997
Robert Collins goes inside the Pentium II math bug.
September 1997
T.V. Raman's Emacspeak speech-feedback system provides an alternative UI for the visually impaired.
October 1997
The precursor to the recently announced Advanced Encryption Standard is published in DDJ. It is entitled "The Block Cipher Square Algorithm," by Joan Daemen, Lars R. Knudsen, and Vincent Rijmen.


January 1998
Peer-to-peer programming for the Internet was covered in an article by Louis Thomas, Sean Suchter, and Adam Rifkin.
February 1998
XML, Python, Perl, Tcl, and others of today's mainstream scripting languages are covered.
July 1998
DDJ goes inside DVDs with this article by Linden deCarmo.


June 1999
Lincoln Stein's "A DNA Sequence Class in Perl" is central to the Human Genome Project.
October 1999
DDJ returns to Small-C with "The Small Scripting Language," by Thiadmer Riemersma.


February 2000
Philip Wadler presents "GJ: A Generic Java."
March 2000
Wireless communication gains momentum, as James Wilson and Jason Krontz examine the Bluetooth spec. Gnutella is released.
September 2000
Dan Farmer and Wietse Venema launch a DDJ series on "Forensic Computer Analysis."
October 2000
"The C# Programming Language," by Scott Wiltamuth is published; it's the first technical article on the new language from Microsoft.
November 2000
"Kerberos vs The Leighton-Micali Protocol," by Aviel Rubin.
December 2000
"Dr. Dobb's Software In the 21st Century" special issue is released.

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