Computer History Exhibits
Web page updated 11 October 2009 to list the new stairwell displays.
The Stanford Computer Science exhibits can be seen during university hours
by visiting the Gates Information Science building or
The displays were assembled by a coalition of Stanford computer
scientists and the
Computer History Museum (CHM), formerly the Computer Museum History
Center (CMHC), and before that a
part of The Computer Museum (TCM) in
Boston, has installed exhibits within the Gates Computer Science
building containing historical equipment and documents focusing on
Stanford's role in the history of computing. The exhibits are being
changed and updated as time permits./BR
Some notes about the history of the Stanford CS department are availble on a
Contributions of additional materail are welcome,/BR
The first floor exhibit, installed November 1997, focuses on the early history of
the Stanford Computer Science
Department. and its founder,
Forsythe, and his
Further exhibits are found on all floors of the building and all can be
on-line if you can't make it to Stanford.
We are also collecting information
about the PhD students, and their students+, that have graduated from the
The Stanford Computer Science Department was founded on the 9th of January,
so that in 2005 it could celebrate its 40th anniversary.
The actual event took place March 21st, 2006.
2^5 th Anniversary Cake
The Participants include
The displays are spread throughout the public areas of the
Computer Science building, at Campus Drive and Serra street on the
Stanford University campus, Stanford CA 94305-9400.
The current (May 2010) displays are
location (case umber): Items:
- At the entrance (#8): The Mobi Robot.
- In the Center Lobby (#9): Victor Scheinman's robot arm.
- On the central mushroom, a guide to the various display sites.
- At the far end of the passage (#1): Historical Storage disks
- On the right side above table, left (#2): George Forsythe and students.
- On the right side above table, right (#3): Early Stanford CSD faculty.
- In the table left (#6) Calculators used by Forsythe and Floyd.
- In the table right (#7) Stanford Programming Trophies, Prof. McCarthy's Turing award.
- On the left side, right (#4): Departmental timeline. LOTS, and an
system status box.
- On the left side, left (#5): Stanford AI Lab (SAIL) history. More pictures of
SAIL participants have been collected; many came from
Bruce Baumgart who maintains
a large archive.
- up the left staircase to the second floor, (#6) a new display case showing printing technology; CDC Belt printer, HP laserjet,
Linotype slug, printing heads from IBM Selectric, wire printer, daisy wheel printer, inkjet printer, etc.
- up the right staircase to the second floor, (#7) an exhibit of communication technology is under construction:
Early Livermore accoustic-coupled modem, Selecterm modem, SAIL asymmetric modem, DECtalk unit, Cisco exhibit, etc;
- In the landing of the stairway to floor 2, a 1969 IBM poster designed by on the history of mathematics. This poster was removed in 2015 in response to protest that considered that the poster perpetuated a gender biased view of Computer Science and Stanford CSD.
The following not was placed there temporarily, but now the area has been repaointed: The poster "Men of Mathematics", a timeline of Mathematical events from about 1000 to 1950 designed by Charles and Ray Eames, commissioned by IBM Corporation for the 1961 Mathematica exhibition, has been removed in response to perceptions that it perpetuates gender inequality in Computer Science.
IBM renamed it Minds of Modern Mathematics in 2012 and made the identical contents available for the iPad.
We expect Stanford CSD to do Better.
In two deep displays (#21-22). Computing in the fifties and earlier.
- Left: Early storage devices: electron-beam tube from SWAC, delay line,
RCA selectron tube, Eckert-Mauchly plug-in module.
Electric keypunch and cards.
In the background Grace Hopper in front of a Univac.
- Right: Whirlwind artifacts: coreplane, logic panel, tube tester;
Jay Forester photo.
- In side cabinet (#23): Computing Without Electricity: mechanical
integrators, linear and rotary slide rules, log table, Computator, abacus.
- Planned: two boards for explanations (#24-25) next to the
- In the landing of the stairway to floor 3, two posters on the History of Computers
(to 1967) [British] and History of Microprocessors.
3 In two deep displays (#31-32). Computing in the sixties.
- Left: IBM 360 artifacts: 360-65 9020 (FAA special) front panel,
core panels, manuals.
- Right: DEC PDP-6 artifacts and modems. Picture of Gordon Bell's group.
DEC cartridge disk, Model 33 Teletype, punched paper tape.
Planned: Timesharing technology.
- In side cabinet(#33): CROMENCO computing with a C-3 system, terminal,
camera, posters, 8" floppy drive,
Roger Melen and Harry Garland book, manuals.
- Planned: two boards for explanations, next to the alcoves:
Computer Systems History, (#35) timesharing
- In the landing of the stairway to floor 4, Language History, Silicon Valley History posters.
4 In two deep displays (#41-42).
Computing in the seventies and later.
- Right: Early personal computers: Apple, Pet, Commodore,
- Left: Sun computers: First working board, Early SUN, disk drive. Photos
of Andy Bechtolsheim, Scott McNealy, Bill Joy, Vinod Khosla, Laura Tong,
and Vaughan Pratt.
- Side cabinet (#43): Apple display, in preparation.
- Card Cabinet (#51) The manuscript on punched cards and generating programs for David Gries' Compiler Construction for Digital Computers; John Wiley and Sons, New York, 1971, 491 pages.
- Wall cabinet (#52) Two copies of David Gries' Compiler book, one opened to show the metal typefont avialble then.
This display was fremoved in order to accomodate a renovation of the fifht floor, but has not been replaced.
Now removed to the CMHC: The original 1971
Wars computer game.
a wide display (#11) on the wall between the
elevators and the HP lecture hall. Computer development timelines (being developed)
- Logic devices, from relay to integrated circuit, with some typical circuit
- Background Election prediction in 1952.
- PDAs and the KBMS group.
- Xerox Altos and mice.
- IBM PC.
- The original Google Storage (#12)
We are developing student trees for Stanford CS faculty.
Contributions are welcome. An overview page of
PHD students and many students that were supervised by CS faculty has
links to the faculty trees below where the information is available.
New Historical Faculty list wiki.
- George Forsythe.
Working list, many dates are estimates.
- Alex Aiken (from UC Berkeley, 2003 - now)
- Russ Altman (Medicine, now Genetics & courtesy CS, 1992 - now).
- Mary G. Baker (from UC Berkeley, with EE, 1994-2003).
- Jeffrey Barth (from UC Berkeley, 1976-1978).
- Forrest Baskett (1971-1982 regular, consulting - now).
- Serafim Batzoglou (from MIT, 2001 - now).
- Gil Bejerano ( - now).
- Charles Bigelow, with Art department (1982 - 1997, left for industry).
- Thomas O. Binford (1971-2000, emeritus - now).
- Dan Boneh (1997 - now).
- Tom Bredt (EE professor 1970-1976).
- Chris Bregler (from UC Berkeley, 1999 - 2002).
- Bruce Buchanan (1970-1985, left for Univ.of Pittsburgh).
- Rodney Brooks (1983 -1964, left for MIT).
- Vinton Cerf (EE 1972-1976, left for ARPA and MCI).
- David Cheriton (1981 - now).
- James Clark (EE/CSL) (1979-1983, founded Silicon Graphics).
Colby (1970-1974, left for UCLA, deceased 2001), Education, CS..
- Steve Cooper ( - now).
- Bill Dally (from MIT, with EE, 1997 - now).
- George B. Dantzig (with OR, 1964 - now, emeritus).
- Giovanni diMicheli (from IBM Research, EE, 1988 - now).
- David L. Dill (from CMU, 1987 - now).
- Dawson Engler (CS and EE, 1998 - now).
- Jeffrey Eppinger (1988 - 1989).
- Ronald Fedkiw (CS, from UCLA, 2000 - now).
Jerome Feldman (professor 1968-1974
At SAIL ~1970 (1/4); 1973 Rochester; ICSI, Berkeley.).
Edward Feigenbaum (from UC Berkeley, 1965-2000, emeritus - now).
- Richard Fikes (1991 - now).
- Robert Floyd (1967-1995, retired, deceased 2002).
- Michael Flynn (EE, 1965 - 1999 emeritus).
- Armando Fox (CS, 1998 - now).
- Joyce Friedman (from MITRE; at Stanford 1967-1970; Univ.of Michigan, Boston Univ.)
- Samuel Fuller (EE, 1970-1977, left for DEC) .
Hector Garcia-Molina (from Princeton, 1992 - now).
Michael R. Genesereth (1979 - now).
- John T. Gill III (EE & courtesy CS, - now).
- Bernd Girod (EE & courtesy CS, from Un.Erlangen, 1999-now).
- Ashih Goel ( courtesy CS) , -now).
Andrew Goldberg (from MIT, 1987-1995, left for NEC labs, Microsoft Research)
Gene H. Golub (CS, SCCM, iCME) (1962 - deceased 2007).
Cordell Green (1973-1978).
David Gries (from TU Muenchen; Stanford 1966-1969; Cornell)
Leonidas J. Guibas (1985 - now).
- Anoop Gupta (EE, 1987-1999, to Microsoft Research).
Y. Halpern (Harvard; IBM and Consulting Prof. at Stanford 1984-1996; Cornell).
Hanrahan (from Princeton and PIXAR, 1994 - now).
- David Heegern (Psychology and Neuroscience, - now).
- Jef Heer ( - now).
John Hennessey (from SUNY Stony Brook, EE & CS, 1977 - now).
John G. Herriot(wiki) (1960-2003, emeritus, deceased). was.
- Mark Horowitz (CS & EE, 1984 - now).
- Manolis Katevenis (1984 - 1984).
- Sachin Katti ( - now).
- Martin Kay (Linguistics, courtesy CS, - now).
- Alan Kay (from Univ. of Utah; lecturer 1968-1980,
at SAIL ~1970 and XEROX Parc; Apple; Disney.
Oussama Khatib coming soon (1991 - now).
- Vladlen Koltun (2005 - now)
- Scott Klemmer (2004 - now)
Donald Knuth (1969 - now, emeritus).
Daphne Koller (from UC Berkeley; 1995 - now) .
- Christoforos Kozyrakis (EE and CS, from UC Berkeley, 2002 - now)
Monica Lam (1988 - now).
- Keith A. Lantz (1977?-1984?).
Jean-Claude Latombe (from Grenoble, 1987 - now).
- Joshua Lederberg (with Genetics, 1965-1978, consulting - 2001; to Rockefeller Univ., deceased 2008).
- Doug Lenat (from Stanford, CMU, 1977-1982, to MCI and CyCorp).
- Jure Leskovic ( - now).
- Michael Leventon (Radiology and CS, from UC Berkeley, 2004 - now)
- Philip Levis (2005 - now)
Marc Levoy (from UNC, Chapel Hill, 1990 - now).
- Michael Levitt (CEE, courtesy CS, - now).
- Fei-Fei Li ( - now).
- Percy Liang ( - now).
- David Luckham (EE, 1977 - 2001 emeritus, now);at sail ~1970.
Zohar Manna (1975 - ???), see also Stanford
students with theses, or
- Christopher Manning (CS and Linguistics, 1999 - now).
W. Mayr (1981-1989; visiting (25%) 1990-1993; Univ. Frankfurt; TU Muenchen).
- David Mazieres (2005 - now)
McCarthy (1962-1963, 1965-2002, emeritus, deceased 2011);
At sail ~1970...
- Edward J. McCluskey (with EE, from Princeton, 1967 - emeritus, now).
- Bill McKeeman (professor 1966-1968) .
- Nick McKeown (CS & EE, 1995 - now).
- Teresa Meng (from UC Berkeley, EE, 1988 - now) Students.
- William Miller (from Argonne, later with GSB, 1964 - 1997, emeritus)..
- Grgori Mints (, courtesy CS, - now).
John C. Mitchell (1988 - now).
Rajeev Motwani (from UC Berkeley, 1988 - now).
- Mark Musen (from Brown Univ. and Stanford, Medicine & courtesy CS, 1988 - now)
- Clifford I. Nass (courtesy CS, ? - now).
- Andrew Ng (2002 - now).
- Nils Nilsson (from SRI, 1985 - now, emeritus).
Oliger (from Uppsala, 1974-2001, emeritus - deceased 2005).
- Oyekunle Olukotun (EE & courtesy CS, - now).
- John Ousterhout ( - now).
Susan Owicki (EE and CS, 1976-1983, part time since 1983)
- Balaji Prabhakar (EE and CS, from Stanford via MIT, 1998 - now).
- Serge Plotkin (from MIT, 1989 - now).
Vaughan Pratt (from MIT, 1981-2000, emeritus - now).
- Raj Reddy (professor 1966-1969)
- Brian Reid (from CMU; 1977 (1981?)-1983 (1986?); left for DEC WRL; CMU west, Google, Internet Systems Consortium).
- Eric Roberts (1990 - now).
- Paul S. Rosenbloom (CS and Psychology, fron CMU, 1984-1989, left for USC ISI)
- Mendel Rosenblum (from U.C.Berkeley, 1991 - now)
Bernard Roth (SAIL,ME, 1969-current)
- Timothy Roughgarden (2004 - now)
- David Rumelhart (Psychology, 1987 - 1998, deceased 2011)
Ken Salisbury (CS and Surgery, from MIT, 1999 - now).
Arthur Samuel (from IBM, research professor 1966-1990).
Roger Schank (1968-1973, left for Yale, later NorthWestern, CMU West).
- Robert Schreiber (CS, 1979 - 1984, left for RPI, later at NASA, Hewlett Packard Research).
Yoav Shoham (1987 - now)
- Russel Shakelford (CS, 2000 - 2003).
Edward Shortliffe (Stanford Medicine and CS, 1979-2000; Columbia Univ., Univ. of Arizona).
Harold Stone (EE) (-1976; IBM Research; Cornell; NEC Research)
Andrew M. Stuart (from Oxford Univ., with Mech.Eng., at Stanford 1991-1999, to Warwick Univ., UK).
Robert Tarjan, (1974-1980, left for AT&T Bell Labs, at Princeton University since 1985.
- Sebastian Thrun (from CMU, 2003 - 2011, went to Google and Know Labs)
- Luca Trevisian ( - now).
- Fouad Tobagi (from UCLA, EE & courtesy CS, 1977 - now)
- Carlo Tomasi (from Cornell, 1992-2001)
Jeffrey Ullman (from Princeton 1979 - 2004 emeritus, now).
David Ungar (1986-1991)
Wim van Cleemput (EE, to ???, now Delos Research Group)
- Benjamin van Roy (courtesy CS), -now).
Richard H. Watson (CS, 1964-1967 .. , to Shell Oil, UC, Lawrence Livermore Lab)
Gio Wiederhold (lecturer 1965-1976, professor 1976-2001,
emeritus - now). There is also an advisor
and mentor tree on-line.
Jennifer Widom (from Cornell, IBM Research, 1993 - now)
- James Hardy Wilkinson (part time 1960's)
- Ryan Williams ( - now).
Terry A. Winograd (from MIT, 1973 - now)
Niklaus Wirth (1963-1967).
Mihalis Yannakakis (2003-2004)
Andy Yao (1976-1986)
- Frances Yao (1975-1979)
- Unknown adviser (I show CSD PhD graduates here that I have not yet linked to
a faculty member). Photographs of
unidentified students at the AI lab are available to help.
advisees (I show all CSD PhD graduates as of summer 2002 here with a
pointer to their advisor tree, including thoses that I have not yet linked
to a faculty member).
The CS department also maintains a list of alumni.
The Center for Integrated Systems lists its
alumni as well.
We have a phototour,
of the Stanford Computer Science Computer History Display.
The photour includes some items that are not now shown in the actual display,
and includes some links to further information.
The initial photographs were made by Nuriya Janss, July 1999, but are being
updated as new items are put on display.
We have also posted a list with some additional pictures of our
Click to review the
of the historical display and its progress.
A Brief History of Computing
is on the web pages of Jeremy Meyers:
A Short History of the Computer.
There is an ever-increasing amount in information on Wikipedia, so information on specific iytems are best found there.
Other History sites
The Computer History Museum (CHM) in mountain View, CA has since October
2003 a Virtual
Visible Storage.Many Computer
History Web Sites are shown here, as the Computerseum, Commercial
Computing Museum., etc.
Its predecessor is The
(TCM) in Boston, MA.
The Digibarnis located in
the Santa Cruz mountains, focuses on operational machines.
The IEEE Computer Society timeline includes images of early
At the Computer Industry History is a collections of links
to history pages by the Electronic Software Publishing Corporation.
A timeline starting 50BC focusing on industry is maintained at
A timeline of computer history events is available from
ComputerHope, with many entries for Apple, Windows, and Unix.
A focus on Canadian
Computing is maintained by Zbigniew Stachniak at York University.
The Deutsches Museum in Munich has an extensive
computer section, with some pictures of their large
collection of early mathematical instruments.
The University in Erlangen also displays on the floors of its department
a collection of their historical
computers (incl. a Zuse Z23 from 1962), components,
computing instruments, and graphics.
Computing in The Netherlands is shown in a
military museum and at the Computer
Museum at the Vrije Universiteit which shows, among other, paper tape
and analog computers.
The Vintage collection
is displayed periodically in Oakland, CA; now with annual showings and
sales at the CHM.
The impressive museum on office technology started by
in Paderborn, Germany,
The Electronics Museum in San Jose, CA
Timeline from PBS "The Triumph of the Nerds".
The History of Computers, maintained by a computer-meeting company;
A site, "Computers: History and Development, from Jones
Knowledge, which focused on hardware, but closed down in 2006.
IBM's museum is now
on line, as the Antique attic, vol.1,
Interesting pictures of antique instruments for sale are found at
Antique Scientific Instruments, Old & Rare Books.
Folklore of computing, at Monash Univ.
Bletchley Park, Enigma and Colussus site, where Turing worked during WW II.
A glossary of terms used in the
MIT Multics literature, generally useful for old computer stuff
(1965-1975). Also list of their people; some S-1 references.
This page first created 31 March 1997, updated 6 August 2006 by Gio Wiederhold,
We will update these webpages as we find time.