Today in Tech – 1980

By Community Team

On this day in 1980 Microsoft formally signed a contract with IBM to create an operating system for the then in-development IBM PC. The operating system was based on an existing OS created by Seattle Computer Products. It was originally released with the IBM PC as IBM-PC DOS, but is now famously known as MS-DOS. Microsoft made it so that they acquired and solely developed the operating system, and would be able to sell it to other companies under the name MS-DOS. Because of these actions, MS-DOS became the dominant operating system of the time, and turned Microsoft into the dominant technology company of the PC era.

8 Responses

  1. Susan Victoria Ciconte says:

    And, Microsoft was eventually sued for making it such that only PCs could use its operating system, including its browser. I remember Netscape suing Microsoft. I also remember an Apple software system called MacWrite, with its pull down menus and other terrific features, getting away from those nasty function keys: control c, control p. Ugh. Of course, Microsoft copied that idea. Alas, Apache today reminds me so of the original MacWrite. Thank you for those memories.

    I look forward to these history in tech moments each month. I’m 56, female, and back in those 80s, while working in DC, I used PCs by day, usually with defense contractors (I get smiles and raised eyebrows from younger folks when I mention how we had access to an intranet of sorts among other knowledge), really hating that DOS system, and having the singular pleasure of using Apple for a small newspaper business in the evening. I became a long time supporter of Apple but in 2016 did buy a Lenovo laptop. Of course, my phone will always be an iPhone, however.

    I just would like to reiterate that we don’t have to be younger than 40 to have been a part of this tech movement.

  2. Delano Strachen says:

    Has Microsoft ever put out the best application in any category?

  3. Dave Simpson says:

    That’s not exactly how I recall what happened. Bill Gates & two other fellows were given the contract to devekop the DOS OS for IBM. Bill had the nouse to have allowed him/them to co-write their own very similar version of DOS for their own small start up company Microsoft.
    There was no ‘Aquiring’ required.

  4. Jack Brosch says:

    Fire In the Valley … GREAT book on the history of the PC and operating systems, well worth the read.