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The following is a chronological listing of significant events in the development of the field of Information Technology law between 1980 and 1989. For other time periods see:
- Chronology of Events - Pre-1700
- Chronology of Events - 1700s
- Chronology of Events - 1800s
- Chronology of Events - 1900-1930s
- Chronology of Events - 1940s
- Chronology of Events - 1950s
- Chronology of Events - 1960s
- Chronology of Events - 1970s
- Chronology of Events - 1990s
- Chronology of Events - 2000s
- Chronology of Events - 2010s
1980 — Sony and Philips introduce the compact disc.
May 22, 1980 — Pac-Man is introduced by Namco.
November 1980 — IBM hires Paul Allen and Bill Gates to create an operating system for its new PC. The pair buy the rights to a simple operating system manufactured by Seattle Computer Products and use it as a template. IBM allows the two to keep the marketing rights to the operating system, called DOS.
1981 — Apple Computer signs a secret agreement with Apple Records (the record company started by the Beatles), allowing Apple Computer to use the "Apple" name for its business. Apple Computer agrees not to market audio/video products with recording or playback capabilities.
1981 — The first computer viruses, the Apple Viruses 1, 2, and 3, some of the first viruses “in the wild,” or in the public domain are launched. The viruses are found on the Apple II operating system and spread through Texas A&M via pirated computer games.
March 3, 1981 — Diamond v. Diehr, 450 U.S. 175 (1981) is decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court holds that while a mathematical formula per se is not patentable, when a claim containing such formula implements or applies it in a structure or process which considered as a whole is performing a function designed to be protected by the patent laws the claim constitutes patentable subject matter.
August 12, 1981 — IBM introduces the IBM PC, which runs Microsoft's MS-DOS operating system. The IBM Model 5150 uses an open hardware architecture, which allows third-party add-ons, and its design is easy for rivals to clone.
1982 — The term "Internet" is coined.
1982 — The first Internet-connected machine is a Coke vending machine rigged by computer science graduate students at Carnegie Mellon University to tell them whether or not the machine was stocked with cold soda.
1982 — Groupe Speciale Mobile (now Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) is formed by the Conference of European Posts and Telecommunications (CEPT) to design a pan-European mobile technology.
May 24, 1982 Section 506(a) of the U.S. copyright law is amended to provide that persons who infringe copyright willfully and for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain shall be punished as provided in 18 U.S.C. §2319.
July 1982 — William Gibson coins the term "cyberspace."
1983 — AT&T is dismantled in divestiture.
1983 — The Musical Instrument Digital Interface (MIDI) is introduced at the first North American Music Manufacturers show in Los Angeles. MIDI is an industry-standard electronic interface that links electronic music synthesizers. The MIDI information tells a synthesizer when to start and stop playing a specific note, what sound that note should have, how loud it should be, and other information.
January 1, 1983 — The Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) becomes the standard for communicating between computers over the Internet. It was on this date that all host computers on the ARPANET were required to shift from the NCP protocol to the TCP/IP protocol.
August 30, 1983 — The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals rules that Franklin Computer violated Apple Computer's copyrights on certain computer programs, including the Apple operating system on ROM chips. The decision reverses a lower court's ruling that programs on chips are indistinguishable from the hardware itself, which is not subject to copyrights, but only patent protection.
November 1983 — In Australia, a federal court rules that computer programs stored in ROM are not literary works, and as such are not protected by Australian copyright law. Apple Computer had sued an Australian computer dealer for copyright infringement of the Taiwan-made Wombat computer.
November 1983 — Working under funding provided by the Department of Defense, a group led by Paul Mockapetris and Jon Postel creates the domain name system for locating networked computers by name instead of by number.
1984 — Richard Stallman founds the Free Software Foundation.
1984 — The CD-ROM is developed by Sony and Phillips.
1984 — The Department of Defense splits the ARPANET into two specialized networks: ARPANET would continue its advanced research activities, and MILNET (for MILitary NETwork) would be reserved for military uses that required greater security.
1984 — The Cable Act of 1984 is enacted.
January 4, 1984 — Franklin Computer agrees to pay US$2.5 million in damages to Apple Computer for copyright infringement of the operating system used in the Apple II computer. Franklin Computer agrees to cease selling their cloned operating system by April 1.
January 17, 1984 — The U.S. Supreme Court determines that home videotaping is legal in the United States, and that home videotape cassette recorders were legal since they had substantial non-infringing uses.
July 1, 1984 — The novel Neuromancer by William Gibson is published. It contains one of the first instances of the term cyberspace.
November 8, 1984 — The Semiconductor Chip Protection Act of 1984, Pub. L. No. 98-620, 98 Stat. 3347 (Nov. 8, 1984) (codified at 17 U.S.C. §901) is enacted. The Copyright Office assumes administrative responsibility.
November 16, 1984 — The Trademark Law Revision Act of 1988, Pub. L. No. 100-667, 102 Stat. 3935 (Nov. 16, 1988) (amending 15 U.S.C. §1051 et seq.) becomes effective.
December 5, 1984 — The first edition of Scott on Computer Law, by Michael D. Scott, is published by Wiley Law Publishers.
1985 — The Computer Inquiry III decision is released.
1985 — The Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) debuts.
1985 — The Whole Earth 'Lectronic Link computer conference (WELL) goes online.
1985 — Richard Stallman publishes the GNU Manifesto, which establishes the idea of open source computing.
March 15, 1985 — The first .com (Symbolics.com) is registered.
1986 — Al Gore introduces the National Science Foundation Authorization Act of 2002, which supports computer network research.
1986 — The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act is enacted.
1986 — The Electronic Communications Privacy Act of 1986 is enacted.
June 21, 1986 — S. 2594, the Supercomputer Network Study Act of 1986, is introduced by then-Senator Albert Gore was enacted.
1988 — The first ISDN is offered in United States.
1988 — The Open Software Foundation is founded.
1988 — The Berne Convention Implementation Act of 1988, Pub. L. 100-568, 102 Stat. 2853 is enacted.
March 7, 1988 — In United States v. Western Elec. Co., 714 F. Supp. 1 (D.D.C. 1998), the court modifies the Modified Final Judgment to allow BOCs to engage in the transmission of information, but not in the creation of content).
1989 — The League for Programming Freedom is established.
1989 — The book Cuckoo's Egg, by Clifford Stoll is published. It tells the real-life tale of a German cracker group who infiltrated numerous U.S. facilities.
February 1989 — Apple Corps files a lawsuit against Apple Computer, charging Apple Computer with violating its 1981 agreement not to market audio/video products. Apple Computer eventually pays US$26 million to settle the dispute.
March 1, 1989 — The United States adheres to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, as revised in Paris, France in 1971.
March 12, 1989 — Tim Berners-Lee of CERN (European Laboratory for Particle Physics) writes a paper proposing an "information management" system that becomes the conceptual and architectural structure for the World Wide Web.
March 21, 1989 — A federal court rules that Microsoft Windows 2.03 is not covered in the Apple Computer/Microsoft 1985 technology licensing agreement. The judge rules that only Windows 1.0 as it appeared in November 1985 is covered, and that Windows 2.03 is fundamentally different. This allows the issue to proceed to trial.
July 18, 1989 — The U.S. Department of Commerce announces plans to allow the sale of a greater range of computers to the Soviet Union and Eastern-bloc nations. The limit on data processing rate is raised from 6.5 million bits per second to 68 million bits per second, allowing the low-end Apple Computer Macintosh and the most basic IBM PS/2 to be exported.
July 21, 1989 — A federal court tentatively rules that most visual features of Windows 2.03 are covered by the 1985 license agreement between Microsoft and Apple. Of the 260 similarities claimed by Apple, only ten remain to be decided.
July 25, 1989 — A federal judge confirms his earlier decision removing all but ten of Apple Computer's claims against Microsoft.
December 1989 — Xerox files a $150 million lawsuit challenging the validity of Apple Computer's copyrights covering the Lisa and Macintosh computers' graphical user interface. Xerox claims Apple Computer copied the Xerox Star system interface.
- ↑ United States v. AT&T, 552 F.Supp. 131, 189 (D.D.C. 1982), aff'd sub nom. Maryland v. United States, 460 U.S. 1001 (1983), vacated sub nom. United States v. Western Elec. Co., slip op. CA 82-0192 (D.D.C. Apr. 11, 1996) (Modified Final Judgement prohibiting the Bell Operating Companies from providing information services).
- ↑ Apple Computer, Inc. v. Franklin Computer Corp., 545 F. Supp. 812 (E.D. Pa. 1982) (full-text), rev’d and remanded, 714 F.2d 1240 (4th Cir. 1983) (full-text).
- ↑ Sony Corp. of America v Universal City Studios, 464 U.S. 417 (1984).