Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational technology company with headquarters in Redmond, Washington. It develops, licenses and sells computer software, consumer electronics, personal computers, related services, its best known software products are the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems, the Microsoft Office suite, the Internet Explorer and Edge web browsers. Its flagship hardware products are the Xbox video game consoles and the Microsoft Surface lineup of touchscreen personal computers; as of 2016, it is the world's largest software maker by revenue, one of the world's most valuable companies. The word "Microsoft" is a portmanteau of "microcomputer" and "software". Microsoft is ranked No. 30 in the 2018 Fortune 500 rankings of the largest United States corporations by total revenue. Microsoft was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975, to develop and sell BASIC interpreters for the Altair 8800, it rose to dominate the personal computer operating system market with MS-DOS in the mid-1980s, followed by Microsoft Windows.
The company's 1986 initial public offering, subsequent rise in its share price, created three billionaires and an estimated 12,000 millionaires among Microsoft employees. Since the 1990s, it has diversified from the operating system market and has made a number of corporate acquisitions, their largest being the acquisition of LinkedIn for $26.2 billion in December 2016, followed by their acquisition of Skype Technologies for $8.5 billion in May 2011. As of 2015, Microsoft is market-dominant in the IBM PC-compatible operating system market and the office software suite market, although it has lost the majority of the overall operating system market to Android; the company produces a wide range of other consumer and enterprise software for desktops and servers, including Internet search, the digital services market, mixed reality, cloud computing and software development. Steve Ballmer replaced Gates as CEO in 2000, envisioned a "devices and services" strategy; this began with the acquisition of Danger Inc. in 2008, entering the personal computer production market for the first time in June 2012 with the launch of the Microsoft Surface line of tablet computers.
Since Satya Nadella took over as CEO in 2014, the company has scaled back on hardware and has instead focused on cloud computing, a move that helped the company's shares reach its highest value since December 1999. In 2018, Microsoft surpassed Apple as the most valuable publicly traded company in the world after being dethroned by the tech giant in 2010. Childhood friends Bill Gates and Paul Allen sought to make a business utilizing their shared skills in computer programming. In 1972 they founded their first company, named Traf-O-Data, which sold a rudimentary computer to track and analyze automobile traffic data. While Gates enrolled at Harvard, Allen pursued a degree in computer science at Washington State University, though he dropped out of school to work at Honeywell; the January 1975 issue of Popular Electronics featured Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems's Altair 8800 microcomputer, which inspired Allen to suggest that they could program a BASIC interpreter for the device. After a call from Gates claiming to have a working interpreter, MITS requested a demonstration.
Since they didn't yet have one, Allen worked on a simulator for the Altair while Gates developed the interpreter. Although they developed the interpreter on a simulator and not the actual device, it worked flawlessly when they demonstrated the interpreter to MITS in Albuquerque, New Mexico. MITS agreed to distribute it, marketing it as Altair BASIC. Gates and Allen established Microsoft on April 4, 1975, with Gates as the CEO; the original name of "Micro-Soft" was suggested by Allen. In August 1977 the company formed an agreement with ASCII Magazine in Japan, resulting in its first international office, "ASCII Microsoft". Microsoft moved to a new home in Bellevue, Washington in January 1979. Microsoft entered the operating system business in 1980 with its own version of Unix, called Xenix. However, it was MS-DOS. After negotiations with Digital Research failed, IBM awarded a contract to Microsoft in November 1980 to provide a version of the CP/M OS, set to be used in the upcoming IBM Personal Computer.
For this deal, Microsoft purchased a CP/M clone called 86-DOS from Seattle Computer Products, which it branded as MS-DOS, though IBM rebranded it to PC DOS. Following the release of the IBM PC in August 1981, Microsoft retained ownership of MS-DOS. Since IBM had copyrighted the IBM PC BIOS, other companies had to reverse engineer it in order for non-IBM hardware to run as IBM PC compatibles, but no such restriction applied to the operating systems. Due to various factors, such as MS-DOS's available software selection, Microsoft became the leading PC operating systems vendor; the company expanded into new markets with the release of the Microsoft Mouse in 1983, as well as with a publishing division named Microsoft Press. Paul Allen resigned from Microsoft in 1983 after developing Hodgkin's disease. Allen claimed that Gates wanted to dilute his share in the company when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin's disease because he didn't think he was working hard enough. After leaving Microsoft, Allen lost billions of dollars on ill-conceived or mistimed technology investments.
He invested in low-tech sectors, sports teams, commercial real estate. Despite having begun jointly developing a new operating system, OS/2, with IBM in
Cooke and Wheatstone telegraph
The Cooke and Wheatstone telegraph was an early electrical telegraph system dating from the 1830s invented by English inventor William Fothergill Cooke and English scientist Charles Wheatstone. It was a form of needle telegraph, the first telegraph system to be put into commercial service; the receiver consisted of a number of needles which could be moved by electromagnetic coils to point to letters on a board. This feature was liked by early users who were unwilling to learn codes, employers who did not want to invest in staff training. In systems the letter board was dispensed with, the code was read directly from the movement of the needles; this came about because the number of needles was reduced. The change was motivated by the economic need to reduce the number of telegraph wires used, related to the number of needles; the change became more urgent as the insulation of some of the early installations deteriorated, causing some of the original wires to be unusable. Cooke and Wheatstone's most successful system was a one-needle system that continued in service into the 1930s.
Cooke and Wheatstone's telegraph played a part in the apprehension of the murderer John Tawell. Once it was known that Tawell had boarded a train to London, the telegraph was used to signal ahead to the terminus at Paddington and have him arrested there; the novelty of this use of the telegraph in crime-fighting generated a great deal of publicity and led to increased acceptance and use of the telegraph by the public. The telegraph arose from a collaboration between William Fothergill Cooke and Charles Wheatstone, best known to schoolchildren from the eponymous Wheatstone bridge; this was not a happy collaboration due to the differing objectives of the two men. Cooke was an entrepreneur who wished to patent and commercially exploit his inventions. Wheatstone, on the other hand, was an academic with no interest in commercial ventures, he intended to publish his results and allow others to make use of them. This difference in outlook led to a bitter dispute between the two men over claims to priority for the invention.
Their differences were taken to arbitration with Marc Isambard Brunel acting for Cooke and John Frederic Daniell acting for Wheatstone. Cooke bought out Wheatstone's interest in exchange for royalties. Cooke had some ideas for building a telegraph prior to his partnership with Wheatstone and had consulted scientist Michael Faraday for expert advice. In 1836, Cooke built both an experimental electrometer system and a mechanical telegraph involving a clockwork mechanism with an electromagnetic detent. However, much of the scientific knowledge for the model put into practice came from Wheatstone. Cooke's earlier ideas were abandoned. In January 1837 Cooke proposed a design for a 60-code telegraph to the directors of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway; this was too complicated for their purposes. Rope-haulage into main stations was common at this time to avoid noise and pollution, in this case the gradient was too steep for the locomotive to ascend unaided. All, required were a few simple signals such as an indication to the engine house to start hauling.
Cooke was requested to build a simpler version with fewer codes, which he did by the end of April 1837. However, the railway decided to use instead a pneumatic telegraph equipped with whistles. Soon after this Cooke went into partnership with Wheatstone. In May 1837 Cooke and Wheatstone patented a telegraph system which used a number of needles on a board that could be moved to point to letters of the alphabet; the patent recommended a five-needle system, but any number of needles could be used depending on the number of characters it was required to code. A four-needle system was installed between Euston and Camden Town in London on a rail line being constructed by Robert Stephenson between London and Birmingham, it was demonstrated on 25 July 1837. This was a similar application to the Liverpool project; the carriages were travelled under gravity into Euston. A system was needed to signal to an engine house at Camden Town to start hauling the carriages back up the incline to the waiting locomotive.
As at Liverpool, the electric telegraph was in the end rejected in favour of a pneumatic system with whistles. Cooke and Wheatstone had their first commercial success with a telegraph installed on the Great Western Railway over the 13 miles from Paddington station to West Drayton in 1838. Indeed, this was the first commercial telegraph in the world; this was a six-wire system. The cables were installed underground in a steel conduit. However, the cables soon began to fail as a result of deteriorating insulation; as an interim measure, a two-needle system was used with three of the remaining working underground wires, which despite using only two needles had a greater number of codes. Since the new code had to be learned, not just read off the display, this was the first time in telegraph history that skilled telegraph operators were required; when the line was extended to Slough in 1843, a one-needle, two-wire system was installed. Cooke changed from running the cables in buried lead pipes to the less expensive and easier to maintain system of suspending uninsulated wires on poles from ceramic insulators, a system which he patented, which became the commonest method.
This extension was done at Cooke's own expense, as the railway company was unwilling to finance a system it still considered experimental
Morse code is a character encoding scheme used in telecommunication that encodes text characters as standardized sequences of two different signal durations called dots and dashes or dits and dahs. Morse code is named for Samuel F. B. Morse, an inventor of the telegraph; the International Morse Code encodes the 26 English letters A through Z, some non-English letters, the Arabic numerals and a small set of punctuation and procedural signals. There is no distinction between lower case letters; each Morse code symbol is formed by a sequence of dashes. The dot duration is the basic unit of time measurement in Morse code transmission; the duration of a dash is three times the duration of a dot. Each dot or dash within a character is followed by period of signal absence, called a space, equal to the dot duration; the letters of a word are separated by a space of duration equal to three dots, the words are separated by a space equal to seven dots. To increase the efficiency of encoding, Morse code was designed so that the length of each symbol is inverse to the frequency of occurrence in text of the English language character that it represents.
Thus the most common letter in English, the letter "E", has the shortest code: a single dot. Because the Morse code elements are specified by proportion rather than specific time durations, the code is transmitted at the highest rate that the receiver is capable of decoding; the Morse code transmission rate is specified in groups per minute referred to as words per minute. Morse code is transmitted by on-off keying of an information carrying medium such as electric current, radio waves, visible light or sound waves; the current or wave is present during time period of the dot or dash and absent during the time between dots and dashes. Morse code can be memorized, Morse code signalling in a form perceptible to the human senses, such as sound waves or visible light, can be directly interpreted by persons trained in the skill; because many non-English natural languages use other than the 26 Roman letters, Morse alphabets have been developed for those languages. In an emergency, Morse code can be generated by improvised methods such as turning a light on and off, tapping on an object or sounding a horn or whistle, making it one of the simplest and most versatile methods of telecommunication.
The most common distress signal is SOS – three dots, three dashes, three dots – internationally recognized by treaty. Early in the nineteenth century, European experimenters made progress with electrical signaling systems, using a variety of techniques including static electricity and electricity from Voltaic piles producing electrochemical and electromagnetic changes; these numerous ingenious experimental designs were precursors to practical telegraphic applications. Following the discovery of electromagnetism by Hans Christian Ørsted in 1820 and the invention of the electromagnet by William Sturgeon in 1824, there were developments in electromagnetic telegraphy in Europe and America. Pulses of electric current were sent along wires to control an electromagnet in the receiving instrument. Many of the earliest telegraph systems used a single-needle system which gave a simple and robust instrument. However, it was slow, as the receiving operator had to alternate between looking at the needle and writing down the message.
In Morse code, a deflection of the needle to the left corresponded to a dot and a deflection to the right to a dash. By making the two clicks sound different with one ivory and one metal stop, the single needle device became an audible instrument, which led in turn to the Double Plate Sounder System; the American artist Samuel F. B. Morse, the American physicist Joseph Henry, Alfred Vail developed an electrical telegraph system, it needed a method to transmit natural language using only electrical pulses and the silence between them. Around 1837, therefore, developed an early forerunner to the modern International Morse code. William Cooke and Charles Wheatstone in England developed an electrical telegraph that used electromagnets in its receivers, they obtained an English patent in June 1837 and demonstrated it on the London and Birmingham Railway, making it the first commercial telegraph. Carl Friedrich Gauss and Wilhelm Eduard Weber as well as Carl August von Steinheil used codes with varying word lengths for their telegraphs.
In 1841, Cooke and Wheatstone built a telegraph that printed the letters from a wheel of typefaces struck by a hammer. The Morse system for telegraphy, first used in about 1844, was designed to make indentations on a paper tape when electric currents were received. Morse's original telegraph receiver used a mechanical clockwork to move a paper tape; when an electrical current was received, an electromagnet engaged an armature that pushed a stylus onto the moving paper tape, making an indentation on the tape. When the current was interrupted, a spring retracted the stylus and that portion of the moving tape remained unmarked. Morse code was developed so that operators could translate the indentations marked on the paper tape into text messages. In his earliest code, Morse had planned to transmit only numerals and to use a codebook to look up each word according to the number, sent. However, the code was soon expanded by Alfred Vail in 1840 to include letters and special characters so it could be used more generally.
Vail estimated the frequency of use of letters in the English language by counting the movable type he found in the type-cases of a local newspaper in Morristown. The shorter marks were called "dots" and the longer ones "dashes", the letters most used were assigned the shorter sequences of dots and dashes; this code was used since 1844 and became known as Morse lan
Chinese telegraph code
The Chinese telegraph code, Chinese telegraphic code, or Chinese commercial code is a four-digit decimal code for electrically telegraphing messages written with Chinese characters. A codebook is provided for decoding the Chinese telegraph code, it shows one-to-one correspondence between Chinese characters and four-digit numbers from 0000 to 9999. Chinese characters are arranged and numbered in dictionary order according to their radicals and strokes; each page of the book shows a number in a 10 × 10 table. The most significant two digits of a code matches the page number, the next digit matches the row number, the least significant digit matches the column number, with 1 being the column on the far right. For example, the code 0022 for the character 中, meaning “center,” is given in page 00, row 2, column 2 of the codebook, the code 2429 for the character 文, meaning “script,” is given in page 24, row 2, column 9; the PRC’s Standard Telegraph Codebook provides codes for 7,000 Chinese characters.
Senders convert their messages written with Chinese characters to a sequence of digits according to the codebook. For instance, the phrase 中文信息, meaning “information in Chinese,” is rendered into the code as 0022 2429 0207 1873, it is transmitted using the Morse code. Receivers decode the Morse code to get a sequence of digits, chop it into an array of quadruplets, decode them one by one referring to the book; the codebook defines codes for Zhuyin alphabet, Latin alphabet, Cyrillic alphabet, various symbols including special symbols for months, days in a month, hours. Senders may translate their messages into numbers by themselves, or pay a small charge to have them translated by a telegrapher. Chinese expert telegraphers used to remember several thousands of codes of the most frequent use; the Standard Telegraph Codebook gives alternative three-letter code for Chinese characters. It compresses telegram messages and cuts international fees by 25% as compared to the four-digit code. Looking up a character given a number is straightforward: page, column.
However, looking up a number given a character is more difficult, as it requires analyzing the character. The Four-Corner Method was developed in the 1920s to allow people to more look up characters by the shape, remains in use today as a Chinese input method for computers; the first telegraph code for Chinese was brought into use soon after the Great Northern Telegraph Company introduced telegraphy to China in 1871. Septime Auguste Viguier, a Frenchman and customs officer in Shanghai, published a codebook, succeeding Danish astronomer Hans Carl Frederik Christian Schjellerup’s earlier work. In consideration of the former code’s insufficiency and disorder of characters, Zheng Guanying compiled a new codebook in 1881, it remained in effect until the Ministry of Transportation and Communications printed a new book in 1929. In 1933, a supplement was added to the book. After the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the codebook forked into two different versions, due to revisions made in the Mainland China and Taiwan independently from each other.
The Mainland version, the Standard Telegraph Codebook, adopted the simplified Chinese characters in 1983. The Chinese telegraph code can be used for a Chinese input method for computers. Ordinary computer users today hardly master it. However, the related Four-Corner Method, which allows one to look up characters by shape, is used; the Hong Kong residents’ identification cards have the Chinese telegraph code for the holder’s Chinese name. Business forms provided by the government and corporations in Hong Kong require filling out telegraph codes for Chinese names; the codes help inputting Chinese characters to a computer. Chinese telegraph code is used extensively in law enforcement investigations worldwide that involve ethnic Chinese subjects where variant phonetic spellings of Chinese names can create confusion. Dialectical differences and differing romanization systems can create serious problems for investigators, but can be remedied by application of Chinese telegraph code. For instance, investigators following a subject in Taiwan named Hsiao Ai-Kuo might not know this is the same person known in mainland China as Xiao Aiguo and Hong Kong as Siu Oi-Kwok until codes are checked for the actual Chinese characters to determine all match as CTC: 5618/1947/0948 for 萧爱国 / 蕭愛國.
Chinese telegraph code is used on occasion in U. S. and Australian Immigration documents. For example, the DS-230 form for K1/K2 visa applicants requires the telegraph code of the applicant's name. Code point Four-Corner Method, a 4-digit structural encoding method designed to aid lookup of telegraph codes Telegraph code Wiktionary page of Standard Telegraph Codebook, 1983 Baark, Erik. 1997. Lightning Wires: The Telegraph and China’s Technological Modernization, 1860–1890. Greenwood Press. ISBN 0-313-30011-9. Baark, Erik. 1999. “Wires and people: The Great Northern Telegraph Company in China.” In China and Denmark: Relations Since 1674, edited by Kjeld Erik Brødsgaard and Mads Kirkebæk, Nordic Institute of Asian Studies, pp. 119–152. ISBN 87-87062-71-2. Immigration Department of Hong Kong. 2006. Card fac
The Baudot code, invented by Émile Baudot, is a character set predating EBCDIC and ASCII. It was the predecessor to the International Telegraph Alphabet No. 2, the teleprinter code in use until the advent of ASCII. Each character in the alphabet is represented by a series of five bits, sent over a communication channel such as a telegraph wire or a radio signal; the symbol rate measurement is known as baud, is derived from the same name. Technically, five-bit codes began in the 17th century, when Francis Bacon developed the cipher now called Bacon's cipher; the cipher was not designed for machine telecommunications and, although in theory it could be adapted to that purpose, it only covered 24 of the 26 letters of the English alphabet and contained no punctuation, numbers or control characters, rendering it of little use. Baudot invented his original code in 1870 and patented it in 1874, it was a 5-bit code, with equal on and off intervals, which allowed for transmission of the Roman alphabet, included punctuation and control signals.
It was based on an earlier code developed by Carl Friedrich Gauss and Wilhelm Weber in 1834. It was a Gray code, the code by itself was not patented because French patent law does not allow concepts to be patented. Baudot's original code was adapted to be sent from a manual keyboard, no teleprinter equipment was constructed that used it in its original form; the code was entered on a keyboard which had just five piano-type keys and was operated using two fingers of the left hand and three fingers of the right hand. Once the keys had been pressed, they were locked down until mechanical contacts in a distributor unit passed over the sector connected to that particular keyboard, when the keyboard was unlocked ready for the next character to be entered, with an audible click to warn the operator. Operators had to maintain a steady rhythm, the usual speed of operation was 30 words per minute; the table "shows the allocation of the Baudot code, employed in the British Post Office for continental and inland services.
A number of characters in the continental code are replaced by fractionals in the inland code. Code elements 1, 2 and 3 are transmitted by keys 1, 2 and 3, these are operated by the first three fingers of the right hand. Code elements 4 and 5 are transmitted by keys 4 and 5, these are operated by the first two fingers of the left hand."Baudot's code became known as the International Telegraph Alphabet No. 1. It is no longer used. In 1901, Baudot's code was modified by Donald Murray, prompted by his development of a typewriter-like keyboard; the Murray system employed an intermediate step. At the receiving end of the line, a printing mechanism would print on a paper tape, and/or a reperforator could be used to make a perforated copy of the message; as there was no longer a connection between the operator's hand movement and the bits transmitted, there was no concern about arranging the code to minimize operator fatigue, instead Murray designed the code to minimize wear on the machinery, assigning the code combinations with the fewest punched holes to the most used characters.
For example, the one-hole letters are E and T. The ten two-hole letters are AOINSHRDLZ similar to the "Etaoin shrdlu" order used in Linotype machines. Ten more letters have three holes, the four-hole letters are VXKQ; the Murray code introduced what became known as "format effectors" or "control characters" – the CR and LF codes. A few of Baudot's codes moved to the positions where they have stayed since: the NULL or BLANK and the DEL code. NULL/BLANK was used as an idle code for when no messages were being sent, but the same code was used to encode the space separation between words. Sequences of DEL codes were used at start or end of messages or between them, allowing easy separation of distinct messages.. Early British Creed machines used the Murray system. Murray's code was adopted by Western Union which used it until the 1950s, with a few changes that consisted of omitting some characters and adding more control codes. An explicit SPC character was introduced, in place of the BLANK/NULL, a new BEL code rang a bell or otherwise produced an audible signal at the receiver.
Additionally, the WRU or "Who aRe yoU?" Code was introduced, which caused a receiving machine to send an identification stream back to the sender. In 1924, the CCITT introduced the International Telegraph Alphabet No. 2 code as an international standard, based on the Western Union code with some minor changes. The US standardized on a version of ITA2 called the American Teletypewriter code, the basis for 5-bit teletypewriter codes until the debut of 7-bit ASCII in 1963; some code points were reserved for national-specific usage. The code position assigned to Null was in fact used only for the idle state of teleprinters. During long periods of idle time, the impulse rate was not synchronized between both devices. To start a message it was first necessary to calibrate the impulse rate a sequence of timed "mark" pu
A computer terminal is an electronic or electromechanical hardware device, used for entering data into, displaying or printing data from, a computer or a computing system. The teletype was an example of an early day hardcopy terminal, predated the use of a computer screen by decades; the acronym CRT, which once referred to a computer terminal, has come to refer to a type of screen of a personal computer. Early terminals were inexpensive devices but slow compared to punched cards or paper tape for input, but as the technology improved and video displays were introduced, terminals pushed these older forms of interaction from the industry. A related development was timesharing systems, which evolved in parallel and made up for any inefficiencies of the user's typing ability with the ability to support multiple users on the same machine, each at their own terminal; the function of a terminal is confined to input of data. A terminal that depends on the host computer for its processing power is called a "dumb terminal" or a thin client.
A personal computer can run terminal emulator software that replicates the function of a terminal, sometimes allowing concurrent use of local programs and access to a distant terminal host system. The terminal of the first working programmable automatic digital Turing-complete computer, the Z3, had a keyboard and a row of lamps to show results. Early user terminals connected to computers were electromechanical teleprinters/teletypewriters, such as the Teletype Model 33 ASR used for telegraphy or the Friden Flexowriter. Keyboard/printer terminals that came included the IBM 2741 and the DECwriter LA30. Respective top speeds of teletypes, IBM 2741 and LA30 were 15 and 30 characters per second. Although at that time "paper was king" the speed of interaction was limited. Early video computer displays were sometimes nicknamed "Glass TTYs" or "Visual Display Units", used no CPU, instead relying on individual logic gates or primitive LSI chips, they became popular Input-Output devices on many different types of computer system once several suppliers gravitated to a set of common standards: ASCII character set, but early/economy models supported only capital letters RS-232 serial ports 24 lines of 80 characters of text.
Models sometimes had two character-width settings. Some type of cursor that can be positioned. Implementation of at least 3 control codes: Carriage Return, Line-Feed, Bell, but many more, such as Escape sequences to provide underlining, dim or reverse-video character highlighting, to clear the display and position the cursor; the Datapoint 3300 from Computer Terminal Corporation was announced in 1967 and shipped in 1969, making it one of the earliest stand-alone display-based terminals. It solved the memory space issue mentioned above by using a digital shift-register design, using only 72 columns rather than the more common choice of 80. Starting with the Datapoint 3300, by the late 1970s and early 1980s, there were dozens of manufacturers of terminals, including Lear-Siegler, ADDS, Data General, DEC, Hazeltine Corporation, Heath/Zenith, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Volker-Craig, Wyse, many of which had incompatible command sequences; the great variations in the control codes between makers gave rise to software that identified and grouped terminal types so the system software would display input forms using the appropriate control codes.
The great majority of terminals were monochrome, manufacturers variously offering green, white or amber and sometimes blue screen phosphors.. Terminals with modest color capability were available but not used. An "intelligent" terminal does its own processing implying a microprocessor is built in, but not all terminals with microprocessors did any real processing of input: the main computer to which it was attached would have to respond to each keystroke; the term "intelligent" in this context dates from 1969. Notable examples include the IBM 2250 and IBM 2260, predecessors to the IBM 3270 and introduced with System/360 in 1964. Most terminals were connected to minicomputers or mainframe computers and had a green or amber screen. Terminals communicate wi
International Business Machines Corporation is an American multinational information technology company headquartered in Armonk, New York, with operations in over 170 countries. The company began in 1911, founded in Endicott, New York, as the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company and was renamed "International Business Machines" in 1924. IBM produces and sells computer hardware and software, provides hosting and consulting services in areas ranging from mainframe computers to nanotechnology. IBM is a major research organization, holding the record for most U. S. patents generated by a business for 26 consecutive years. Inventions by IBM include the automated teller machine, the floppy disk, the hard disk drive, the magnetic stripe card, the relational database, the SQL programming language, the UPC barcode, dynamic random-access memory; the IBM mainframe, exemplified by the System/360, was the dominant computing platform during the 1960s and 1970s. IBM has continually shifted business operations by focusing on higher-value, more profitable markets.
This includes spinning off printer manufacturer Lexmark in 1991 and the sale of personal computer and x86-based server businesses to Lenovo, acquiring companies such as PwC Consulting, SPSS, The Weather Company, Red Hat. In 2014, IBM announced that it would go "fabless", continuing to design semiconductors, but offloading manufacturing to GlobalFoundries. Nicknamed Big Blue, IBM is one of 30 companies included in the Dow Jones Industrial Average and one of the world's largest employers, with over 380,000 employees, known as "IBMers". At least 70% of IBMers are based outside the United States, the country with the largest number of IBMers is India. IBM employees have been awarded five Nobel Prizes, six Turing Awards, ten National Medals of Technology and five National Medals of Science. In the 1880s, technologies emerged that would form the core of International Business Machines. Julius E. Pitrap patented the computing scale in 1885. On June 16, 1911, their four companies were amalgamated in New York State by Charles Ranlett Flint forming a fifth company, the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company based in Endicott, New York.
The five companies had offices and plants in Endicott and Binghamton, New York. C.. They manufactured machinery for sale and lease, ranging from commercial scales and industrial time recorders and cheese slicers, to tabulators and punched cards. Thomas J. Watson, Sr. fired from the National Cash Register Company by John Henry Patterson, called on Flint and, in 1914, was offered a position at CTR. Watson joined CTR as General Manager 11 months was made President when court cases relating to his time at NCR were resolved. Having learned Patterson's pioneering business practices, Watson proceeded to put the stamp of NCR onto CTR's companies, he implemented sales conventions, "generous sales incentives, a focus on customer service, an insistence on well-groomed, dark-suited salesmen and had an evangelical fervor for instilling company pride and loyalty in every worker". His favorite slogan, "THINK", became a mantra for each company's employees. During Watson's first four years, revenues reached $9 million and the company's operations expanded to Europe, South America and Australia.
Watson never liked the clumsy hyphenated name "Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company" and on February 14, 1924 chose to replace it with the more expansive title "International Business Machines". By 1933 most of the subsidiaries had been merged into one company, IBM. In 1937, IBM's tabulating equipment enabled organizations to process unprecedented amounts of data, its clients including the U. S. Government, during its first effort to maintain the employment records for 26 million people pursuant to the Social Security Act, the tracking of persecuted groups by Hitler's Third Reich through the German subsidiary Dehomag. In 1949, Thomas Watson, Sr. created IBM World Trade Corporation, a subsidiary of IBM focused on foreign operations. In 1952, he stepped down after 40 years at the company helm, his son Thomas Watson, Jr. was named president. In 1956, the company demonstrated the first practical example of artificial intelligence when Arthur L. Samuel of IBM's Poughkeepsie, New York, laboratory programmed an IBM 704 not to play checkers but "learn" from its own experience.
In 1957, the FORTRAN scientific programming language was developed. In 1961, IBM developed the SABRE reservation system for American Airlines and introduced the successful Selectric typewriter. In 1963, IBM employees and computers helped. A year it moved its corporate headquarters from New York City to Armonk, New York; the latter half of the 1960s saw IBM continue its support of space exploration, participating in the 1965 Gemini flights, 1966 Saturn flights and 1969 lunar mission. On April 7, 1964, IBM announced the first computer system family, the IBM System/360, it spanned the complete range of commercial and scientific applications from large to small, allowing companies for the first time to upgrade to models with greater computing capability without having to rewrite their applications. It was followed by the IBM System/370 in 1970. Together the