In 1965, the Digital Equipment Corporation presented the PDP-8, thereby marking the beginning of the mini-computer era. Priced at just $18,200, this general-purpose computer was robust enough to be used in both production and laboratory environments.
Some 10,000 of them were sold within the space of 10 years; by 1975, the PDP-8 cost just $2,600.
A whole variety of manufacturers tapped into the new market, building computers based on the PDP-8 for use in process and manufacturing technology and for controlling experiments in research.
By 1975, more than 30 companies in the West German market alone were selling mini-computers. Photo: Jan Braun, HNF