In 1987, a company called Forethought, founded by two ex-Apple marketing managers, rolled out PowerPoint and business meetings have never been the same since. Over at IEEE Spectrum, David C. Brock tells the story:
(Robert Gaskins) envisioned the user creating slides of text and graphics in a graphical, WYSIWYG environment, then outputting them to 35-mm slides, overhead transparencies, or video displays and projectors, and also sharing them electronically through networks and electronic mail. The presentation would spring directly from the mind of the business user, without having to first transit through the corporate art department.
While Gaskins’s ultimate aim for this new product, called Presenter, was to get it onto IBM PCs and their clones, he and (Dennis) Austin soon realized that the Apple Macintosh was the more promising initial target. Designs for the first version of Presenter specified a program that would allow the user to print out slides on Apple’s newly released laser printer, the LaserWriter, and photocopy the printouts onto transparencies for use with an overhead projector...
In April 1987, Forethought introduced its new presentation program to the market very much as it had been conceived, but with a different name. Presenter was now PowerPoint 1.0—there are conflicting accounts of the name change—and it was a proverbial overnight success with Macintosh users. In the first month, Forethought booked $1 million in sales of PowerPoint, at a net profit of $400,000, which was about what the company had spent developing it. And just over three months after PowerPoint’s introduction, Microsoft purchased Forethought outright for $14 million in cash.
"The Improbable Origins of PowerPoint" (IEEE Spectrum)
A trio of lawsuits filed Tuesday against Microsoft, Google owner Alphabet, and Amazon accuses the tech companies of training their facial recognition tools on photos of people that have not given their consent, which is a violation of Illinois law.
This is quite a major hack. Now is a good time to change your Twitter password, if you are a user. Hackers pumping a cryptocurrency giveaway scam appear to have compromised the Twitter accounts of leading exchanges, prominent individuals, major corporations, and at least one news organization.
The mobile phones of a number of politicians in Spain, including the president of Catalonia’s parliament, were recently hacked. The government of Spain has been an NSO customer since 2015, reports Motherboard on Tuesday. NSO Group is an Israeli company that sells surveillance and hacking tools to governments around the world.
Maybe after four months, you’re finally getting tired of staring at that less-than-brilliant home computer monitor. Or maybe you really need to create your own dual-monitor configuration in your home office like the one back on your desk at work. Or maybe that 15-inch screen just isn’t doing it for you anymore and you need […]
Unlike the unquestioned effectiveness of a solid strip of duct tape, you never quite know what you’re going to get when you try to repair something with glue, do you? Whether it’s the material itself that you’re gluing or how much glue you apply or how long you let it sit before testing, there’s always […]
Now that we’re past July 4th, we’re truly turning smack into the sharpened teeth of the summer heatwave season. As temperatures and humidity spike, it just makes all the rest of the nation’s current problems that just tiniest bit more irritating, doesn’t it? Hey, we’re all in this together. So if we can help chill […]