Saturday, September 28, 2019

Early history of Lotus 1-2-3

Lotus 1-2-3 made it easier to use spreadsheets and it added integrated charting, plotting and database capabilities. Lotus 1-2-3 established spreadsheet software as a major data presentation package as well as a complex calculation tool.

Development of Lotus 1-2-3 is closely tied to VisiCalc. Mitchell Kapor worked as a project manager in VisiCalc. He left VisiCalc in 1981, and together with Jonathan Sachs, founded a company called Lotus.

Before he cofounded Lotus, Kapor disclosed and offered Personal Software (VisiCorp) his initial Lotus program. Supposedly VisiCorp executives declined the offer because Lotus 1-2-3's functionality was "too limited".

They chose IBM PC as their platform, which later proved to be a good move. Lotus 1-2-3 enabled chart creation, as well as some database capabilities. It was the first program that supported operations on call ranges, cell naming and macros. Lotus 1-2-3‘s original release date was on January 26, 1983.

Lotus 1-2-3 was presented to the public and, according to the testimony of the PC World magazine, it surpassed VisiCalc by the number of copies sold by October 1983. By April 1987, Lotus Development delivered 2.5 million copies of their software for personal computers (Lotus 1-2-3 was not the only application they developed) to 65 countries. Lotus 1-2-3 was the leading spreadsheet of DOS era.
Early history of Lotus 1-2-3
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