Building IBM: Shaping an Industry and Its Technology by Emerson W. Pugh

By Emerson W. Pugh

No corporation of the 20 th century completed larger good fortune and engendered extra admiration, recognize, envy, worry, and hatred than IBM. Building IBM tells the tale of that company—how it used to be shaped, the way it grew, and the way it formed and ruled the knowledge processing undefined. Emerson Pugh offers enormous new fabric in regards to the corporation within the interval earlier than 1945 in addition to a brand new interpretation of the postwar era.

Granted unrestricted entry to IBM's archival files and without constraints at the approach he selected to regard the data they contained, Pugh dispels many generally held myths approximately IBM and its leaders and gives new insights at the origins and improvement of the pc industry.

Pugh starts off the tale with Herman Hollerith's invention of punched-card machines used for tabulating the U.S. Census of 1890, exhibiting how Hollerith's innovations and the enterprise he confirmed supplied the first foundation for IBM. He tells why Hollerith merged his corporation in 1911 with different businesses to create the Computing-Tabulating-Recording corporation, which replaced its identify in 1924 to overseas enterprise Machines. Thomas J. Watson, who used to be employed in 1914 to control the merged businesses, exhibited awesome technological perception and leadership—in addition to his broadly heralded salesmanship—to construct Hollerith's company right into a digital monopoly of the swiftly becoming punched-card apparatus business.

The attention-grabbing within tale of the move of authority from the senior Watson to his older son, Thomas J. Watson Jr., and the company's swift domination of the pc occupy the latter half the e-book. In ultimate chapters, Pugh examines stipulations and occasions of the Seventies and Eighties and identifies the underlying reasons of the serious probems IBM skilled within the Nineteen Nineties

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Extra resources for Building IBM: Shaping an Industry and Its Technology

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Over to a board of trustees in return for "trust certificates" of equal value. The board of trustees was empowered to make op­ erating and investment decisions on behalf of the companies within the trust. Large financial resources, and control of major industry segments, provided trusts with opportunities to squeeze out smaller companies and ultimately gain monopoly power. Exploitation of monopoly powers by the railroads and other industries had caused the federal government to become involved in protecting local regions and small companies from ruthless exploitation.

His employer dismissed him and dunned him for the lost property. 5 He was reduced to sleeping -Copyrightea Material 32 Building IBM on a pile of sponges in the basement of a drugstore and having the only suit he owned cleaned and pressed while he waited in a back room. His next job was as an assistant to a man selling shares of stock in the building and loan business. Investors paid for the stock in installments, and the salesmen kept the first installment as com­ mission. Watson made so much money that he decided to go into business for himself by opening a butcher shop.

Frequently this took the form of discussions with older men or women, but he also participated in leisure activities with others his age. His first fiancee died of typhoid fever in 1886, one year after their engagement was announced. Two years later he became engaged again, this time to Lucia Talcott, a young woman whose widowed mother had been married to an engineer. Estranged from his own family, Hollerith derived considerable Copyrighted Material 20 Building IBM comfort not only from Lu but also from her mother who had much in common with his own.

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