We continue with 2nd part of the DOS story.
Let us go to Microsoft. Yeah these guys are always in the news for some reason.! The hardware called SoftCard was built with help of Tim Patterson who was working at that time at SCP. z80 was a microprocessor that was aimed at embedded systems and it was developed by Zilog.
SoftCard came with the Operating System called CP/M. This is the Microsoft philosophy all in a package. Microsoft was known for BASIC programming language and Digital Research(DRI) by Gary Kiddall for CP/M.(OS). Well Initially aun unwritten understanding was Microsoft sells: BASIC and Gary Kidall sells: CP/M. But in late 1979 DR began selling some of its operating system (CP/M) with non Microsoft BASIC. This feeling was like a betrayal of trust by Microsoft.
Jack Sams thought Microsoft owned CP/M but was told by Bill Gates, Microsoft did not own it. It was owned by a person made Gary Kidall, who was actually well known for CP/M OS ,whose company Microsoft licensed from.
The Deal of the Century: 86-DOS and CP/M
The Intel Processor 8086 had recently released its processor. Problem was that there was no Operating System to run it. SCP(Seattle Computer Products) wanted the young engineer Tim Patterson to develop CP/M for this processor. SCP got it from Gary Kidall. Tim ,also known ad father of DOS , developed his version of operating system ,copying API from CP/M. At that time 1980s copying API was not illegal. He called the OS : QDOS-Quick and Dirty Operating System.
A great difference was :
there was a FAT File System in QDOS.
It was later renamed to 86- DOS since previous name did not sound right. Sounded sneaky for corporates to buy.
Microsoft buys from SCP and sells to whoever it wanted and not have have to disclose clients who were buying 86-DOS. The clause that mad a difference was:
“Nothing in this licensing agreement shall require Microsoft to identify its customer to Seattle Computer Products.”
Many software developers think most important thing in Software development is programming skills.(i used to think too, the business guys not that important).
This is only partially true! You need a good employee or some one with a good business background.
SCP was offered royalty of $15,000 per license(if source code was included or else $10,000) if Microsoft sold a copy .
Yeah they did sell to IBM. So SCP got out of the deal was 25000 $.
Tim Patterson joins Microsoft and then 86-DOS is renamed tp MS-DOS. The OS is licensed to IBM as PC DOS.
Microsoft buys all rights of 86-DOS from SCP for about 50,000 $, which was considered as a great deal for both parties. This was deal of the century.
By 1991 Microsoft was making 200 Million US$ Dollars from a software they bought for 50,000$!
- Microsoft did not intend to sell Operating System initially.
- Microsoft did not build or own CP/M .
- Microsoft did not build QDOS or own 86-DOS initially.
- They bought from SCP and sold it to IBM.
- Some investments and main was business policy that won the game in DOS.
So be careful when you are signing NDA agreements or contracts.
Unix CreatedAfter MULTICS project was discarded
Unix was created by co- workers of AT&T: Bell Labs :
- Dennis Ritchie
- Ken Thompson
C is inventedBy Denis Ritchie
C was invented by Dennis Ritchie in AT& T:Bell Labs.
He recently passed away.
CP/M-First text based OS is developed.Invented by Gary Kiddall
This OS is invented by Gary Kildall of Digital Research.
MS BASIC introduced by MicrosoftA version of BASIC programming language
BASIC language was originally made by John G Kemeny and E.Kurtz on May 1 1964.
“We needed a language that could be ‘taught’ to virtually all students (and faculty) without their having to take a course”
Microsoft BASIC or MS BASIC was introduced by Paul Allen in 1974.
Apple Launchedby Steve :Jobs and Wozniak
The Apple company was founded in 1976 by :
- Steve Jobs
- Steve Wozniak
- Roland Wayne(who later left )
Project ChessMS BASIC deal: Fate changing Deal.
IBM meets with Microsoft owners :
Bill Gates and Paul Allen to purchase MS BASIC, deal that proved true to its name :Project Chess. A deal that reversed fate of both companies.
IBM visits Gary KildallDeal of The Century: lost
At Suggestion of Bill Gates ,IBM goes to Gary Kildall’s home but he was out .
NDA or any agreement was not signed by Gary’s wife.
Microsoft' ProposalProposal to IBM: Proposal that changed Microsoft fate for ever
Bill Gates , Steve Balmer and Bob O Rear goes to IBM(Florida) to make proposal.
To Provide IBM with a package’:
- A Operating System
- Four Programming Language
- Other Software.
Microsoft buys QDOSFrom Seattle Computer Products(SCP)
Bill Gates buys QDOS from Seattle Computer Products(SCP) for 50,000 US$. All rights supposedly since Microsoft has earlier bought non exclusive rights.
QDOS is renamed to 86-DOS.
“. “If you show people the problems and you show people the solutions, they will be moved to act.”-Bill Gates
The ‘IBM Deal’ with Microsoft was : Microsoft was to sell them an OS and other Software for their coming PC.
But Bill Gates made sure the right were such that the OS
- was sold under name of :MS-DOS.
- Microsoft Could sell it to other companies.
These two clauses made the fate of Microsoft and eventually they toppled IBM.
So you need a good business development manager along with good software developers.
Gary Points to IBM
Gary wanted to sue IBM but later IBM agrees to sell CP/M. Catch that the DOS was sold for $40 with IBM PC and CP/M for 240$.
So who would want to buy expensive products. Business is made with the common people.
This what Microsoft did, they built software for the masses. people should thank Bill Gates for that otherwise I might not have been writing all this.
Bill Gates Education is brief in Harvard(2 years)
- Pre Law
- Computer Science graduate courses
He does not complete his degree in Harvard but two years there had an impact.
The Final Say
Techkhala ‘s Point
To be a successful IT entrenepenuers:
We at TechKhala think that just following points has to be considered:
- Business Degree (some body in your company does have)
- Knowledge of Law or Cyber Law.
- Knowledge of Electronics Engineering and Computer Science
- Hitting iron when it is hot”. When you see an opportunity take it.!
- Be humble ,not Proud.
- Read the Contract or focus on the Business Case or contacts.
Just good software and name is not enough.
- Letter to Apple :Tim Cook from a boy in Bangladesh - November 20, 2021
- Five Best Smart Phonestoconsider even in 2021 - November 19, 2021
- The DOS Story-Final Part(Part 2) - November 3, 2021