December 16, 2004
Previous: 1987 / Next: 1989
Intro and links to the other years in the timeline


  • Oct. 1988 — The NeXT Cube is introduced. (After leaving Apple, Steve Jobs started a new computer company called NeXT. In 1986 Jobs purchased the computer graphics division of Lucasfilm and started Pixar Animation Studios.)
  • During 1988 the Moving Picture Experts Group (MPEG) is established. This working group develops the MP3 digitization format that will play a crucial role in music audio file sharing beginning in the late 1990s.
  • Nov. 1988 — An Internet Worm disables approximately 6,000 Internet host computers. A group called the Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT) is created to look at the problem of hackers and electronic crimes.


Additional Resources


  • The Prodigy dial-up service is launched. Prodigy evolved from an unsuccessful videotex program called Trintex, which started in 1984. Prodigy offers news updates as part of its service. From an historical standpoint, Prodigy serves as a bridge from videotex to the new media projects of the 1990s.
  • “Prodigy TV Ad.” Posted on YouTube.
  • News Example:
    Dec. 21, 1988 —
    “Bombing of Pan Am 103.”
    (Story available from
    database vendor services.)
    (BBC Historical Report)
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