GCN at 25 | The 10-year mark

Micros were becoming a mainstay of government desktops circa 1982

Over the course of 25 years, GCN has marked several anniversaries. The first came in 1992, with a report on 10 years of developments in information technology that would change the way agencies did business.

GCN 25th anniversary logo Over those first 10 years, database management based on the Committee of Data Systems Languages had begun to give way to relational database managers, such as Oracle's RDBMS and IBM's DB2, as databases grew from 100G ceilings into tera-bytes. Relational database products also had become available for PCs ' still called micros then.

Speaking of micros, they were becoming a mainstay of government desktops. In 1982, the government set out to purchase 1 million micros by the end of the decade. By 1992, government workers had them, although with a different look and feel than when the buying spree started. PCs running MS-DOS were giving way to Windows interfaces, while the X Window System was giving Unix users a graphical user interface environment.

Meanwhile, after PCs and word processors had pushed typewriters to the edge, laser printers arrived to administer the final shove, sending dot-matrix and daisy-wheel printers down with the IBM Selectrics.

Agencies also were making strides in connectivity, switching from the floppy-disk sneakernets of the 1980s to NetWare, 3Com, Banyan Vines and IBM Token-Rings local-area networks. Signs of the next 10 years also were showing up, as a few agencies began tapping into wireless local-area networks and a few users began connecting to them with their Palmtop PCs.


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