**Posted by Gus Bjorklund to the PEG**
Today is the 30th anniversary of the birth of Progress product.
"Data Language Corp. has released Progress, a high-performance application
development system. In use now on AT&T, Fortune Systems, and Convergent
Technologies machines, Progress will soon be available for the IBM PC AT
under MS-DOS and Xenix.
Progress combines a powerful data base management system, application
language, and an advanced user interface. Automatic screen and report
generation, error recovery and an on-line tutorial are featured.
Prices start at $ 1 ,450 for single users and $ 1 ,950 for multi-user
systems. Query/run-time and plain run-time systems are available for sale
with applications. A Progress Introductory System is available for $295,
including on-line tutorial, full documentation, and all Progress
facilities for building a working application limited only by data base
That was thirty years ago today, when on August 8, 1984, the hitherto
little known Data Language Corporation (aka DLC) made its first product
available for sale. That was Progress Version 2.2.
DLC had shown the Version 1 prototype of Progress at the Fall COMDEX show
in Las Vegas at the end of November 1983. Founder Mary Szekely's two
daughters were there in the DLC booth to demonstrate the product. At the
time the company could ill afford to send people to Las Vegas and several
who had seen the prototype went to the show at their own expense to help
show the product.
In early 1984, Jon Roland wrote in UNIX Review about Progress after having
seen it at COMDEX. "As this is written, this is not yet a released
product, but it has been shown at COMDEX and will have been shown at
Uniforum. The pre-release beta version works well enough to include it
here. It is being developed by some of the same people who developed the
MIMS[R] system on IBM mainframes, which is now supported by General
Electric Information Services Company for manufacturing management and
material requirement planning (MRP). They are trying to develop a package
that will permit non-programmers to write complex applications without
having to resort to lower-level programming. It is functionally a
relational DBMS, but has an easy-to use record-level procedural language
that combines all but DDL functions. When released, it is likely to become
a very popular product.".
Indeed, it soon became /very/ popular. 175 copies of the first release
were purchased by John Harlow, then working at Bell South. Many more were
soon in the hands of others.
A few years later, in 1987, the name of the company was changed from DLC
There are various histories of Progress Software on the Internet. One of
those is former employee Patrick Lannigan's which you can find at