Menu Close

EN | Timeline – Primera generación (1943 – 1956)



First generation (1943 - 1956)

Construction of the Colossus

Alan Turing, Tommy Flowers and Maxwell Herman Alexander Newman build "Colossus", the first valve-based electronic computer built in Great Britain. It was used to decipher German Enigma code messages

Construction of the Mark I

Howard Aiken at Harvard University puts the "Mark I" into operation. Germans in Enigma Code

Construction of the EDVAC

John Presper Eckert and John Mauchly sign a contract to build the Electronic Discrete Variable Automatic Computer (EDVAC)

Stored program

John von Neumann introduces the concept of stored program in the First Draft of a Report on EDVAC

First "Bug"

Whilst working on the Mark II prototype, Grace Murray Hopper observes a relay failure caused by a moth. This popularized the term "bug"

Z4 Survive WWII

Zuse’s Z4 machine survives World War II and contributes to future development of scientific computers in Germany

Construction of the ENIAC

John Presper Eckert and John Mauchly start up ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer) at the University of Pennsylvania. ENIAC was 500 times faster than electromechanical calculators

Electronic digital calculation

John von Neumann, Herman Goldstine and Arthur Burks publish Preliminary Discussion of the Logical Design of an Electronic Computing Instrument, a report setting out the groundwork of electronic digital computing

Automatic Computing Engine

Alan Turing publishes a report characterizing random information extraction on the Automatic Computing Engine (ACE) machine

Construction of the Mark II

Howard Aiken and his team complete Mark II.

The magnetic drum memory is introduced for use as a data storage device for computers.

John Bardeen, Walter Brattain and William Schockley of Bell Labs invent the transistor

Mathematical Theory Communication

Claude Shannon introduces the communication process in his paper titled A Mathematical Theory of Communication

Errors in data blocks

Richard Hamming suggests a method for finding and correcting errors in data blocks

Construction of the SSEC

IBM introduces the Selective Sequence Electronic Calculator (SSEC), the first machine to adopt von Neumann’s stored program notion

Construction of the EDSAC

Maurice Wilkes builds the Electronic Delay Storage Automatic Calculator (EDSAC) at Cambridge University (UK). EDSAC took up the stored program idea

Whirlwind Construction

Jay Forrester builds Whirlwind at MIT (USA). Whirlwind was the first real-time machine with a graphics interface (GUI)

Short Order Code

John Mauchly develops Short Order Code. Short Order Code can be regarded as the first high-level programming language

UNIVAC I is launched on the market

The Universal Automatic Computer (UNIVAC I) comes on to the market

Magnetic tapes appear

Magnetic tapes are released as an information storage medium

Ferrite cores

Jay Forrester of MIT patents the idea of using ferrite cores as main memory

Junction transistor

William Shockley invents the junction transistor

Subprogram concept

David Wheeler, Maurice Wilkes and Stanley Gill introduce the concept of subprogram


Maurice Wilkes introduces the idea of microprogramming, an improved technique for control unit design

First compiler A-0

Grace Murray Hopper develops the first compiler, called A-0

UNIVAC I predicts the elections

UNIVAC I predicts US President Dwight Eisenhower’s election before polling stations close


NIXDORF is founded to manufacture calculators

The IBM 701 is released

The IBM 701 comes onto the market. IBM 701 was capable of running 17,000 instructions per second. Sixteen units were sold from 1953 to 1956

Thomas watson jr

Thomas Watson Jr is appointed IBM President

Construction of the ILLIAC I

ILLIAC I is built at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (USA)

LEO goes live

LEO, the commercial version of EDSAC, developed in UK, is switched on

The IBM 650 is marketed

IBM 650 comes onto the market. The IBM 650 is considered to be the first mass-produced computer

First silicon transistor

Texas Instruments sells the first silicon transistor

IBM 704 and UNIVAC 1103A go on the market

The IBM 704 and UNIVAC 1103A are released. They were the first machines to use a ferrite memory

Magnetic tape drives

Magnetic tape units come onto the market. They were designed for use as read/write devices

Development of the 350 RAMAC

IBM develops the 350 RAMAC (Random Access Method of Accounting and Control), the first storage system based on magnetic disks

Nobel Prize

Shockley, Brattain and Bardeen receive the Nobel Prize in Physics for their invention of the transistor

Artificial Intelligence Concept

John McCarthy and Marvin Minsky introduce the concept of artificial intelligence