August 24, 2010

NeXT Computers: From the founder of Apple Computers - Steve Jobs

Image representing NeXT as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase
Next, Inc. (later Next Computer, Inc. and Next Software, Inc. and stylized as
NeXT) was an American computer company headquartered in Redwood City,
, that developed and manufactured a series of computer workstations
intended for the higher education and business markets. NeXT was founded in 1985
by Apple Computer co-founder Steve Jobs after his forced resignation from Apple.
NeXT introduced the first NeXT Computer in 1988, and the smaller NeXTstation in
1990. Sales of the NeXT computers were relatively limited, with estimates of
about 50,000 units shipped in total. Nevertheless, its innovative
object-oriented Nextstep operating system and development environment were
highly influential.

NeXT later released much of the Nextstep system as a programming environment
standard called OpenStep. NeXT withdrew from the hardware business in 1993 to
concentrate on marketing OPENSTEP, its own OpenStep implementation, for several
OEMs. NeXT also developed WebObjects, one of the first enterprise web
application frameworks. WebObjects never became very popular because of its
initial high price of $50,000 but remains a prominent early example of a web
server based on dynamic page generation rather than static content. Apple
purchased NeXT on December 20, 1996 for $429 million, and much of the current
Mac OS X system is built on the OPENSTEP foundation. WebObjects is now bundled
with Mac OS X Server and Xcode.

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