Aviva Directory » Computers & Internet

The focus of this guide is on computers, the Internet, and the software, hardware, and technologies that have made them possible.

The origins of the computer goes back to the earliest calculating machines of the 1400-1500s, or earlier, but these were not what we think of when we think of a computer today.

The 1940s gave us the large British EDSAC computers, IBM's punch-card machines, and UNIVAC, a line of digital stored-program computers but, even as the technology improved, these were available only to large corporations, universities, and governments.

Computers became available to regular people when they became smaller and, eventually, more affordable. The Burroughs Corporation was the first manufacturer to create a market for small-scale, general-use computers, with its E101 Desk Size Electronic Computer in 1954, but it wasn't particularly successful. The first commercially successful small-scale computer was the Bendix G-15 All-Purpose Computer, which was introduced in 1955. However, it carried a price tag of about $45,000, so very few of them were sold for home use.

During the 1960s, IBM introduced several small computers but they had little interest in marketing to individuals or to create an affordable market.

It wasn't until the 1970s that anything approaching a mass market for computers was in place. By 1970, the Data General Nova and DEC PDP-11 were selling in the tens of thousands. However, the development of the microprocessor in 1971 opened the computer market to the masses.

NM Electronics became Intel Corporation, which produces the microprocessor chips used in several brands of computers, as well as memory chips and other products that go into the production of home computers.

Acorn Computers, a UK firm, produced the Acorn Atom, the BBC Micro, the Electron, the BBC Master, the Acorn Archimedes, and the A7000, which were the earliest home computers on the market. Apple Computer Company was founded by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in 1976, releasing the first of the Apple II series the following year. Other early home computers include the Atari, the Coleco Adam, and the Commodore.

Over the years, home computers have been powered by a large variety of operating systems. The UNIX OS was developed by a group of employees at AT&T in 1969, and Linux in 1991. Today, there are several operating systems based on the Linux OS, including the current version of the macOS. Microsoft released MS-DOS in 1981, and Windows in 1985. IBM's OS/2 was released in 1987 and updated until 2001. IBM discontinued support for it in 2006, but new versions have been produced and marketed under eComStation.

Today, most home computers use some version of the Windows operating system, followed by the Mac OS, and Linux. Mobile operating systems are dominated by Google's Android OS and Apple's iOS, followed by Windows, Blackberry, and Symbian.

Of course, besides the computers themselves, computer hardware and accessories are an important part of the home and business computers. These might include storage devices, cables, components, peripherals, and all of the parts and pieces that go into the construction of a computer or a computer network.

The Internet is used to connect our home and business computers together through the World Wide Web. The Internet is comprised of a network of computers, routers, switches, cables, and other hardware, as well as the software to make it all work. The software includes the operating systems that make the computers work, web browsers, and the various scripts and languages that are used to create web pages, such as blog software, wiki software, forum scripts, HTML editors, social media platforms, search engines, security and anti-virus software, databases, e-book readers, online games, and many others.

In this category and, in particular, its subcategories, topics related to computers and the Internet are the focus.


Artificial Intelligence

Bulletin Board Systems (BBS)

Computer & Video Games

Computer Science

Data Communications & Networking

Data Formats & File Extensions

E-Book Readers

Free/Open Source

History of Computers


Organizations & Associations

Parallel Computing


Publications & References



Speech Technology

Systems & Hardware

Technical Support & Help

Virtual Reality