Personal Software

Division name: Personal Software

Founded: 1983
Address: 3410 Central Expressway, Sunnyvale California
PSD Building at 3410 Central Expressway


In July of 1983, the Personal Software Division was founded. The new division was responsible for developing software for HP PCs and for re-branding third party software for sale on HP PCs. The division’s first general manager was Tom Anderson. Most of the division’s initial activity was focused around software for the soon-to-be-released HP-150 Touchscreen PC. These products included such HP classics as MemoMaker, Series 100 Graphics and Personal Card File as well as the HP-marketed version of Lotus 1-2-3.

The 150 was not successful in the market because it was not IBM compatible. While PSD ported the most popular software programs (like 1-2-3, Wordstar and Multimate), the division did not port all programs, and the market wanted a wide selection (or to just be able to purchase off-the-shelf software without having to worry about the PC it was going to run on). PSD made good profit on the ported programs. The internally-developed programs (like Memomaker) required more R&D.

In early 1984, PSD introduced a version of Visicalc to run on HP 3000 computers.

PSD had turnover of $30M in 1984 and $25M in 1985.

In June of 1986, PSD introduced its best product, Graphics Gallery for the Vectra PC. That same year, PSD introduced a corporate site licensing program for PC software, making HP the first major vendor to offer PC software site licensing. PSD was one of the HP divisions involved in the massive NewWave project of the late 1980s and early 1990s.

In January of 1988, Webb McKinney was appointed general manager of PSD. In August of 1989, PSD changed its name to the “Santa Clara Information Systems Division”. In January of 1991, the division’s name changed again to “Cooperative Object Computing Division”.

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