For example, KonradZuse started work on the Z1 Computer in 1935/36, and it was completed in 1938. Reading instructions in from a punched tape, the Z1 was mechanical and could be programmed to some (albeit minor) extent. In 1981, Microsoft released MS-DOS (not a graphical user interface ['GUI']).
Hence because it was mechanical, could be programmed, and receive input (via punched tape) and then give out output (that is, the solution to the inputted problem) it is classed as the first modern day computer. Unfortunately the Z1 Computer was destroyed just 5 years later during World War II. General use tends to include word processing
The list below covers the history of computers via a timeline from 1938 onwards: Time - Event/Creation - Description of event in 1939 - Hewlett-Packard - HP is founded in Palo Alto, CA, USA (near Stanford University), and HP is currently one of the largest computer companies in the World. The 70s and 80s (along with the internet being launched) laid the groundwork which led to the massive rise in computer popularity.
In the year 1943 - Colossus - Using vacuum tubes, the programmable Colossus was used during the war to help British code breakers decrypt German messages and in year 1944 - Harvard Mark I - Also known as the IBM Automatic Sequence Controlled Calculator, the Mark I was shipped to Harvard in 1944 and was used by the US Navy, it was heralded as one of the most reliable and stable computers of its time.
In 1946 - ENIAC 1 Computer - The Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer was like the Harvard Mark I which is another big leap forward in terms of computational power and in the year 1950 - Games - Alan Turing writes the first computer program to simulate chess, whilst America started using computers to simulate military operations via 'war games'.
In 1951 - UNIVAC - the Universal Automatic Computer was the first computer designed with commercial intent and was delivered to the US Government to help calculate and tabulate the 1950 census and this year 1950s there are many developments - including Fortran (the first general use programming language) being created by IBM.
In many ways the 50s was the "software" era; this term (which refers to programmed computer software programs) became an understood term throughout the industry. The year 1961 - Space war and this was the first well known digital computer game, created by Steve Russell and others, followed by 1969 - ARPANET - The USA's Department of Defenselaid the groundwork for ARPANET, the initial internet.
In 1970s - Many developments - including Intel producing the first RAM chip in 1970 along with the first processor (CPU) in 1971, IBM and Alan Shugart creating the floppy disc (also in 1971), Robert Metcalfe and Xerox creating the first Ethernet computing network in 1973, IBM releasing the first consumer computer in 1974 and then - a couple of years later in 1976/77 - Apple releasing the Apple I and TRS-80, along with the Commodore.