First PC Software
Dan Bricklin b. 1951-and Visicalc


Think about tax time without a computer. Imagine calculating budgets, cost estimates, and investments by hand.This is the problem that engaged Harvard MBA student Dan Bricklin in 1978. He envisioned a computer program that not only would do the calculations, but would be able to redo them if a number changed. Working with friend and MIT computer science major Bob Frankston, his vision became a reality and VisiCalc was born. The software program's first logo was "VisiCalc: How did you ever do without it?" Soon after its inception, no one did.

But, by 1980 VisiCalc had found its way into thousands of homes and businesses, easing budgeting and giving computers a function aside from word processing. Sales of Apple's new personal computer mushroomed after VisiCalc was released. The pc won a place in the office and the home, and VisiCalc was the first mass software sensation of this new era in the history of computers.

Although the name is gone, Bricklin's software lives on in its modern forms-Corel Quattro Pro, IBM/Lotus 1-2-3, and Microsoft Excel.