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If you visit Pacific Grove you’ll see no visible reminders of the once-great Digital Research, makers of CPM. There are no plaques. No historical markers. It’s just the fading memory of people who were part of the computer industry in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
It’s why I try to interview as many “grey beards” as possible, so we can get these stories down before they disappear forever.
Here we take a walking tour with Tom Rolander (one of the key executives at Digital Research). You see the house where IBM visited and tech industry history was changed forever.
By the way, in the first part of my interview with Tom Rolander he mentioned a libel lawsuit with Tim Paterson, the guy who sold DOS to Bill Gates. Well, Tim gives his part of the story on his blog. This is a remarkable age where we can get perspectives on a significant historical event from the people involved.
I wonder how we can preserve all of these perspectives so that people 100 or, even, 1,000 years from now can understand what happened and why the world has Microsoft and not Digital Research? After all, we still talk about CocaCola’s beginnings and its impact on the world. Did you know that CocaCola’s bottling rights were sold for $1?
One thing is I hope others join me in getting important historical stories on video. If you have someone in your life who played a key role in tech industry history I’d love to see them talk about it. The folks who built the personal computer industry are now 50 to 60 years old. We’ve already lost many who came before, like Hewlett and Packard. It would be a shame to lose these stories forever since we now have the ability to get them down and share them with the world.