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Updated: Aug 25, 2021

The term software was not used until the late 1950s. During this time, although different types of programming software were created, these were generally not commercially available. As a result, users, mostly scientists and large companies - often had to write their own software.

Below is a brief timeline of software history:

* June 21, 1948: Tom Kilburn, a computer scientist, wrote the world's first software for the Manchester Baby computer at the University of Manchester in England.

* Early 1950s: General Motors creates the first operating system for the IBM 701 Electronic Data Processing Machine.It is called the General Motors operating system or GM OS.

* 1958: statistician John Tukey used the word software in an article on computer programming.

* Late 1960s: floppy disks were introduced and used to distribute software in the 1980s and 1990s.

* November 3, 1971: AT& released the first version of Unix OS.

* 1977: Apple releases Apple II and consumer software hits the road.

* 1979: VisiCorp released VisiCalc for the Apple II, the first spreadsheet software for personal computers.

* 1981: Microsoft released MS-DOS, the operating system on which most of the first IBM computers ran.IBM starts selling software and commercial software is offered to the average consumer.

* 1980s: hard drives become standard on PCs and manufacturers start packaging software on computers.

* 1983: the Linux project was launched to create the free software movement.

* 1984: Mac OS released to run Apple's Macintosh line.

* Mid-1980s: AutoDesk released major software applications including AutoCAD, Microsoft Word, and Microsoft Excel.

* 1985: Microsoft Windows 1.0 released.

* 1989: CD-ROMs become standard and hold much more data than floppy disks. Large software programs can be deployed quickly, easily and relatively cheaply.

* 1991: the Linux kernel, the basis of the open source Linux operating system, was released.

* 1997: DVDs are released and can hold more data than CDs, which makes it possible to put bundles of programs such as Microsoft Office Suite on a single disc.

* 1999:, he used cloud computing to pioneer software distribution over the internet.

* 2000: the term software as a service (SaaS) became fashionable.

* 2007: IPhone launched and mobile apps began to become widespread.

* 2010 to present. DVDs are becoming obsolete as users buy and download software from the internet and the cloud. Vendors switched to subscription-based models, and SaaS became widespread.

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