A Brief History of Computing
- Things I couldn't find a better category for

© Copyright 1996-2005, Stephen White

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1997 - May 11 IBM's Deep Blue, the first computer to beat a reigning World Chess Champion, Gary Kasparov, in a full chess match. The computer had played him previously - loosing 5/6 games in February 1996.
2000 - Jan 14 US Government announce restrictions on exporting Cryptography are relaxed (although not removed). This allows many US Companies to stop the long running, and rather ridiculous process of having to create US and International copies of their software.
2000 - June 20 British Telecom (BT) claim the rights to hyperlinks on the basis of a US patent granted in 1989. Similar patents in the rest of the world have now expired. Their claim is widely believed to be absurd since Ted Nelson wrote about hyperlinks in 1965, and this is where Tim Berners Lee says he got the ideas for the World Wide Web from. This is just another in the line of similar incredulous cases - for example amazon.com's claim to have patented '1-click ordering'. Even more absurb was the claim made in March 2002 by a 'til then unheard of company "Maz Technologies" that they had, in 1998, obtained a fairly generic patent covering encrypted storage of documents. BT's claim was finally rejected by a judge in the US on 23 August 2002.
2000 - Sept 6 RSA Security Inc. released their RSA algorithm into the public domain, in advance of the US patent (#4,405,829) expiring on the 20th Sept. of the same year. Following the relaxation of the US government restrictions earlier in the year (Jan. 14) this removed one of the last barriers to the world-wide distribution of much software based on cryptographic systems. It should be noted that the IDEA algorithm is still under patent and also that government restrictions still apply in some places.

© Copyright 1996-2004, Stephen White My homepage - email:swhite@ox.compsoc.net