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Evolution of Operating Systems

The evolution of operating systems is directly dependent on the development of computer systems and how users use them. Here is a quick tour of computing systems through the past fifty years in the timeline.

Early Evolution

  • 1945: ENIAC, Moore School of Engineering, University of Pennsylvania.
  • 1949: EDSAC and EDVAC
  • 1949: BINAC - a successor to the ENIAC
  • 1951: UNIVAC by Remington
  • 1952: IBM 701
  • 1956: The interrupt
  • 1954-1957: FORTRAN was developed

Operating Systems - Late 1950s

By the late 1950s Operating systems were well improved and started supporting following usages:

  • It was able to perform Single stream batch processing.
  • It could use Common, standardized, input/output routines for device access.
  • Program transition capabilities to reduce the overhead of starting a new job was added.
  • Error recovery to clean up after a job terminated abnormally was added.
  • Job control languages that allowed users to specify the job definition and resource requirements were made possible.

Operating Systems - In 1960s

  • 1961: The dawn of minicomputers
  • 1962: Compatible Time-Sharing System (CTSS) from MIT
  • 1963: Burroughs Master Control Program (MCP) for the B5000 system
  • 1964: IBM System/360
  • 1960s: Disks became mainstream
  • 1966: Minicomputers got cheaper, more powerful, and really useful.
  • 1967-1968: Mouse was invented.
  • 1964 and onward: Multics
  • 1969: The UNIX Time-Sharing System from Bell Telephone Laboratories.

Supported OS Features by 1970s

  • Multi User and Multi tasking was introduced.
  • Dynamic address translation hardware and Virtual machines came into picture.
  • Modular architectures came into existence.
  • Personal, interactive systems came into existence.

Accomplishments after 1970

  • 1971: Intel announces the microprocessor
  • 1972: IBM comes out with VM: the Virtual Machine Operating System
  • 1973: UNIX 4th Edition is published
  • 1973: Ethernet
  • 1974 The Personal Computer Age begins
  • 1974: Gates and Allen wrote BASIC for the Altair
  • 1976: Apple II
  • August 12, 1981: IBM introduces the IBM PC
  • 1983 Microsoft begins work on MS-Windows
  • 1984 Apple Macintosh comes out
  • 1990 Microsoft Windows 3.0 comes out
  • 1991 GNU/Linux
  • 1992 The first Windows virus comes out
  • 1993 Windows NT
  • 2007: iOS
  • 2008: Android OS

And as the research and development work continues, we are seeing new operating systems being developed and existing ones getting improved and modified to enhance the overall user experience, making operating systems fast and efficient like never before.

Also, with the onset of new devies like wearables, which includes, Smart Watches, Smart Glasses, VR gears etc, the demand for unconventional operating systems is also rising.