Today marks the 100th birthday of IBM, which was founded on June 16, 1911, in New York City as the awkwardly named Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company. (It was renamed International Business Machines in 1924.)
Over the decades, Big Blue, as the company is nicknamed, has reinvented itself many times, offering everything from calculators to electric typewriters to desktop computers to software to consulting services. By the mid-20th century, IBM was an icon of American business whose clean-cut employees in dark suits followed the mantra “Think,” a favorite slogan of longtime leader Thomas J. Watson.
Despite a somewhat stodgy reputation in recent years, IBM holds more patents than any other U.S.-based technology company and has a long history of pioneering technological innovations. IBM research has yielded the computerized airline reservation system, the magnetic strip on your credit cards, the ATM, the UPC bar code and the excimer laser used in LASIK eye surgery. IBM computers also helped power the Apollo moon landing in 1969.
The above gallery showcases some of the highlights of the company’s 100 years, from a 50-foot-long calculator to Watson, the computer that beat two human opponents on “Jeopardy!”
CNNMoney has a story tracing IBM’s history and impact on American business, along with a gallery of 5 groundbreaking inventions that IBM cast aside. Our friends at Fortune also take a look at five things every kind of tech CEO - from Page to Zuckerberg - can learn from Big Blue.
And our corporate partners at Time.com explore how IBM produced sustained and unlikely success by adapting to change.
"The Social Network" topped the box office this weekend, proving there's an appetite out there for movies about technology - or at least, movies about technology involving good-looking young actors screwing each other over and having sex. This got us thinking about other tech tales or topics that would make juicy fodder for Hollywood.
Give thumbs up or down to "Steve Jobs, Ninja Assassin" and "Google: The Musical" here.