[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
The IBM Personal Computer that eventually came to market
in late 1981 came from a renegade independent business
unit based in Boca Raton, Florida. This wasn't IBM's
first try at developing a microcomputer. At least four
other designs has been proposed to management in Armonk,
including one earlier design from Boca. The major
difference between the project that eventually produced
the IBM PC and these earlier efforts was that the group
of men brought together in July 1980 by Entry Systems
Division (ESD) lab director Bill Lowe were pledged to do
their work in real time, not IBM time. They had just
one year to bring their product to market.
[ ... ]
But Lowe and his crew, breaking the first of many rules,
decided to buy everything. They started by looking for
software. Since Lowe wanted to buy his software from an
established vendor, CP/M looked like his only choice.
CP/M came from Gary Kildall's Digital Research, only for
some reason IBM didn't know that. The usually infallable
briefing book said that CP/M was a Microsoft product. In
probably his last gracious gesture toward a competitor,
Bill Gates told the caller from IBM that a mistake had
been made, and gave them Kildall's number in Pacific
[ ... ] The whole plan depends on getting reliable
suppliers, so Lowe sends his lieutenants out to Digital
Research and Microsoft to find out what kind of people
these are. When the IBMers arrive in Pacific Grove,
California, to talk with Gary Kildall at Digital
Research, he wasn't there. Despite his appointment with
IBM, Gary had gone flying in his small plane. Not a good
With Gary out flying around, the people left at Digital
Research didn't know what these IBM guys wanted to talk
about, and the IBM guys wouldn't talk about anything
until a nondisclosure agreement was signed.
[ ... nondisclosure, the 1956 consent decree, etc. ... ]
Jump back to Pacific Grove, where Digital Research didn't
even have a nondisclosure agreement of its own. Gary was
still flying around somewhere over the Santa Cruz
mountains, while Dorothy Kildall squinted at the IBM
nondisclosure agreement, imagining her new house with its
stable and hot tub going on the auction block following
an IBM legal action. She refused to sign, so the men
from IBM left town, having never revealed the plans for
the Acorn [IBM PC] but still needing an operating system.
[ ... Gary Kildall died from alien experiments ... ]
> > Many years after that. It happened in 1979, and Kildall
> > died in 1995. He died relatively young, at 52. From
> > complications following a fight in a bar.
> Again, the first time I have heard that version. I heard he fell down
> the stairs. Any background?
"Gary Kildall died in July 1994 at the age of 52. The
computer media, with a few small exceptions, ignored
his passing. The Circumstances of his death are pretty
murky. One report attributed it to a fall from a
ladder, another an incident at a bar, and another to
a heart attack."
"Gary Kildall died on July 11, 1994 at the age 52.
There are many conflicting stories as to how he died,
many say that he killed himself (or that was the
industry rumors). It seems some were trying to keep
the story quiet, and that has only given the story
credence. The story I believe is that he was shot in
a barroom altercation (that had no relevance to
anything else), and that everyone is keeping it quiet
due to some legal issues."
To Unsubscribe: send mail to majordomo@xxxxxxxxxxx
with "unsubscribe freebsd-chat" in the body of the message