About Us

The IT History Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of knowledge about the people, products, and companies that together comprise the field of computing.

Since 1978 our organization, and its hundreds of members, have worked toward this goal, and we invite you to contribute your own knowledge and memories on this website! (read more)

A Wonderful Adventure in Exhibition Space

Somehow my career has repeatedly led me into doing unexpected and wonderful things. One such piece of serendipity has been the role I landed at the Jerusalem Science Museum as the curator of an exhibition in honor of Alan Turing. This project took a year and half, and gave me the occasion to work with some amazing people at the...

Alan Turing’s Earthshaking Philosophical Insight

Being the curator of the Alan Turing Year exhibition at the Jerusalem Science Museum, I was invited to sit on a panel dedicated to Turing’s legacy at the ICON Science Fiction, Imagination and The Future festival in Tel Aviv. My talk there was well received, and touches on some interesting truths, so I decided to share its content here. I...

CHM lecture: IBM Fellow Grady Booch on Computing: The Human Experience

Introduction: In this informative March 11, 2013 lecture at the Computer History Museum (CHM), Grady Booch asked and tried to answer this question: "What does it take to make "sentient" devices (that can feel, sense, think and reason) out of silicon and software?" But before we can address that question, there are many others that need to be thought about...

Using Dense Social Networks to Progress a Brilliant Career in Computer Science!

Introduction The February 10, 2013 Stony Brook (SBU) Northern CA Alumni Association meeting featured a very informative and enlightening talk by Ike Nassi, PhD (1974 Computer Science) about what he learned at SBU, the friends he made there, and use of his social network to further his career. Ike was able to create and maintain a very "dense social network"...

The Day IBM Let Married Women Work

It's hard to imagine not being able to work at IBM if you're a woman who happens to be married, but Gizmodo has published a memo from January 10, 1951 that discusses a "temporary modification" of IBM's personnel policy—yes, it finally allowed female employees to continue working once they were married. It says: Effective immediately and until further notice: 1...

The Race for Microprocessor Leadership in Silicon Valley: Jan 7, 2013 IEEE Life Member Meeting in Mt View, CA

Abstract The microprocessor changed what is now known as Silicon Valley from a mostly agricultural and defense electronics region into a center of innovation for many new technologies. How did that happen and what challenges were faced along the way? This IEEE Life Member panel will discuss and debate the development of microprocessor technologies in the 70's, 80's and 90's...

CEO John Hollar's CHM Progress Report at Jan 7, 2013 IEEE Life Member Meeting

John Hollar, Computer History Museum (CHM) President and CEO, delivered a progress report on CHM activities at the January 7th IEEE Life Member meeting in Mt View, CA. The CHM has become the leading institution that's archived computer artifacts, but is now recognized as a thought leader on the impact of computing on our society. Four CHM areas were cited...

The Turing Centenary - In Review

As 2012 closes, so does the Turing Centenary Year . The hundredth anniversary of Alan Turing's birth prompted many events, conferences and talks dedicated to Turing. A large list of such events was compiled by the Turing Centenary website. I had the privilege to participate in two such events. One was a special session on the history of computing as...

CHM Event Commemorating the 25th anniversary of Sun Micro's SPARC Microprocessor

On November 1, 2012, a panel of Sun Micro luminaries discussed how the company "bet the ranch" on the SPARC microprocessor at an early and critical stage of the company's development. The panel was expertly moderated by my Northeastern University MSEE classmate Dave House. CHM CEO/Prez John Hollar did a great job introducing and closing the program. The motivation to...

The WITCH is Back: 61 year old computer lives again!

After a three-year restoration project at The National Museum of Computing, the Harwell Dekatron (aka WITCH) computer was rebooted on 20 November 2012 to become the world's oldest original working digital computer. Now in its seventh decade and in its fifth home, the computer with its flashing lights and clattering printers and readers provides an awe-inspiring display for visiting school...

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