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)

Exciting New Happenings at Computer History Museum: Blog, Social Media, Digital Repository, Exhibits & Events!

1.  The venerable Computer History Museum (CHM) in Mt View, CA recently launched a multimedia blog, with contributors from their seasoned staff of curators and subject matter experts.  

CHM Prez John Hollar told me,  "This has been one of the most important initiatives CHM has taken in the area of digital content and distribution.  It is and will continue to be a window into the museum's work by publishing different types of content on a variety of interesting topics."

@CHM is the blog name.  Check it our here:  http://www.computerhistory.org/atchm/

More info at:  http://www.computerhistory.org/bloginfo/

You can subscribe to this blog as a RSS feed to get updates which are published once or more per week (I like Google Reader for that purpose).

2.  CHM  has a relatively new Linked In Group.   You can join that group and post relevant discussion topics at:


I'm told an entry on CHM’s blog (http://www.computerhistory.org/atchm/) on software collections will be posted this Friday, October 12, 2012.  Stay tuned!

The museum also has a Facebook page, which you can check out at:


3.  CHM is building a "digital repository" to encompass all digital artifacts it's collected.  For example, images, films, videos of lectures & conversations, streaming digital video and images.  A recent example is the still images of the "Honeywell Animals," which were all made from electronic components.  More information is available here:


Currently, the museum has collected 80M Terabytes worth of those digital artifacts and is creating ~40M Terabytes of digital data each year (that's a 50% annual increase this year)!

 4.   Exhibits are not only physical artifacts at the museum, like the very impressive Revolution show (a tour de force of the history of computing).    In addition to physical exhibits, the museum offers many online exhibits on a variety of topics related to the history of computing. Some online exhibits like Visible Storage and Mastering the Game complement physical exhibits you can also experience when you visit the Museum in person. Other online exhibits are available only through the Internet and extend the reach of the Museum to virtual visitors around the world.

Check them all out at:  http://www.computerhistory.org/exhibits/

5.  Lectures, panel sessions, and conversations/fireside chats have been very popular over the years.  This author has published many event summaries (see the CHM LI Group Discussions for a list with url's).

I plan to attend the next three events, which are as follows:

October 16:  Microsoft Research's Rick Rashid in Conversation with John Markoff of The New York Times
This is another event in a series designed to give our audiences unique insight into the remarkable work being done in research labs around the world.   
Authors Note:  With the cutbacks in U.S. government and corporate research spending, it's great to see that Microsoft has an active research lab.  I'm truly looking forward to this conversation to assess the company's innovation initiatives and programs.
As Microsoft's Chief Research Officer, Richard (Rick) F. Rashid oversees worldwide operations for Microsoft Research, the largest computer science research organization in the world, encompassing more than 850 researchers across eleven global labs. Under Rashid's leadership, Microsoft Research conducts both basic and applied research across disciplines that include algorithms and theory; human-computer interaction; machine learning; multimedia and graphics; search; security; social computing; and systems, architecture, mobility and networking. His team collaborates with the world's foremost researchers in academia, industry and government on initiatives to expand the state of the art across the breadth of computing and to help ensure the future of Microsoft's products.

This event is part of the Computer History Museum’s acclaimed Revolutionaries speaker series, featuring renowned innovators, business and technology leaders, and authors in enthralling conversations often with leading journalists. Our audiences learn about the process of innovation, its risks and rewards, and failure that led to ultimate success.

October 27, 2012  1PM-3PM     BIG PICTURE SCIENCE-- A live radio show!
From hoopla over the 2012 doomsday prophesy to asteroid strikes, computer sentience, and climate change, we’ll interview top scientists on stage about the spectacular predictions about the end of the world as well as scientific theories about how it might end.
Be in the audience and watch this national radio show come together - interviews, skits, miscues and all - followed by a discussion with the scientists. This is your chance to ask about the disaster scenario that gives you insomnia and hear just how likely it is to occur.

Doomsday: Be a Part of it … if it’s the Last Thing You Do.

Nov 1, 2012 11am-1pm:   25th Anniversary Panel Discussion and Luncheon:  SPARC at 25: Past, Present and Future

 This panel of six luminaries, chaired by Dave House (this author's classmate @Northeastern University's MSEE program 1968-69), will discuss the origins and evolution of the SPARC processor on its 25th anniversary. When a small startup -- Sun Microsystems -- decided to develop their own microprocessor in the mid 1980's, it chose a Reduced Instruction Set Computers (RISC) architecture. The 1987 debut of the Sun-4, the first SPARC based computer, ignited meteoric growth at Sun and ultimately transformed the industry. The panelists will recollect the technical and business challenges of this revolutionary path, the risks and rewards of the development of multiple generations of increasingly complex chips, and the critical role of software. The panel will also address the current state of the market, and speculate on future challenges and opportunities.


 We will be publishing follow up CHM articles, including one on the challenges the museum faced (and overcame) due to the financial crisis and market meltdown from Fall 2008 till Spring of 2009.

Any comments or suggestions for future CHM blog posts are welcome.  Please email the author at:  [email protected]


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