Triumph of the Nerds: The Rise of Accidental Empires (1996) is a documentary film written and hosted by Robert X. Cringely (Mark Stephens) and produced for British television by Oregon Public Broadcasting. The title refers to the 1984 film, Revenge of the Nerds, and the documentary is based on Cringely's book, Accidental Empires. The three-part film first premiered on PBS in June 1996. The full transcripts of the documentary can be found at the PBS Web site.The documentary chronicles the rise of the personal computer/home computer beginning in the 1970s with the Altair 8800, Apple I and Apple II and VisiCalc. It continues through the IBM PC and Apple Macintosh revolution through the 1980s and the mid 1990s, ending at the beginning of the Dot-com boom with the release of Windows 95.
It includes interviews with many influential figures in the PC industry, including Apple's Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, Microsoft's Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer, and Oracle's Larry Ellison.
Episode 1: Impressing Their Friends
- Tim Paterson's development of 86-DOS largely from duplicating Gary Kildall's CP/M operating system. Microsoft purchased all rights to 86-DOS from Paterson's employer SCP for US$50,000 shortly before the release of the IBM PC. Microsoft's resulting MS-DOS was an operating system that could run on any 8086-family computer.