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MCMLXXIX! (1979)

Computing in 1979 (blue bar gif)

  • Space Invaders, Asteroids and Pacman dominated video game arcades.
  • WordStar is Released. (And indeed... much of FairCom's early documentation was thus born.)
  • Ethernet is introduced by Xerox, DEC and Intel.
  • The first commercial modem, the Hayes Micromodem 100.
  • The ADA programming language had just been released for the US Department of Defense. Still in use today.
  • Introduction of the Intel 8088 microprocessor for the IBM PC. Compatible with the 8086 with an 8-bit data bus! Notice the continued designation of 32-bit x86 in FairCom's V9.
  • Commodore PET released in the United Kingdom. (1MHz 6502 processor, monochrome, 8KB of RAM set you back 569 pounds.)
  • The Sinclair ZX80 introduced. (Editor's personal note -- he owned one.)
  • The Compact Disc (CD) was invented.
  • The Motorola 68000 microprocessor was launched.
  • Usenet was created.
  • The Atari 400 and 800 microcomputers hit the market.
  • Activision was formed from prior Atari programmers.
  • IBM began work on the IBM PC to compete against the Apple II and the Commodore PET.
  • The Texas Instruments TI-99/4 microcomputer was released. Audio cassettes stored your information!
  • Compuserve became the first service to offer email and technical support to personal computer users.
  • VisiCalc becomes the first commercial spreadsheet program.
  • The emoticon?! -) Texting will never be the same.
  • FairCom introduces c‑tree, the world’s fastest and reliable database solution!

pacman blue ghost gif

pacman gif

red pacman ghost gif

Other World Events in 1979

  • The world waited to find out “Who Shot JR”.
  • Mr. Ed, the “talking horse” featured in the television show of the same name, dies.
  • Kate Hudson, Norah Jones and Jennifer Love Hewitt were all born.
  • The Bee Gees, Donna Summer and Rod Stewart were all Hot on the charts.
  • Star Trek: The Motion Picture Released.
  • Mash, Alice and Three’s Company were top ranked in our living rooms.
  • U.S. Voyager I spaceprobe photos reveal Jupiter's rings. Voyager I makes its closest approach to Jupiter at 172,000 miles.
  • First fully functional Space Shuttle Orbiter, Columbia, is delivered to the John F. Kennedy Space Center, to be prepared for its first launch.
  • Susan B. Anthony dollar is introduced in the U.S.
  • NASA's first orbiting space station Skylab begins its return to Earth, after being in orbit for 6 years and 2 months.
  • Michael Jackson releases his first breakthrough album Off The Wall with 7 million copies in the United States alone, making it a 7x platinum album.
  • U.S. Pioneer 11 becomes the first spacecraft to visit Saturn, when it passes the planet at a distance of 21,000 km.
  • Chrysler Corporation asks the United States government for $1 billion to avoid bankruptcy. (Sound familiar?)
  • The long-running comic strip For Better or For Worse begins its run.
  • Entertainment Sports Programming Network, known as ESPN, debuts.
  • Morning Edition premieres on National Public Radio. (A noted FairCom customer!)
  • Eradication of the smallpox virus is certified, making smallpox the first and to date only human disease driven to extinction.
  • Mother Teresa receives the Nobel Peace Prize.

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