Rod Canion
AUTHOR

Rod Canion

"Rod Canion cofounded Compaq Computer Corporation in 1982 and served as chief executive officer from its inception through a decade of unprecedented growth and challenges. During his tenure as CEO, Compaq set records for the largest first-year sales in the history of American business and reached the Fortune 500 and the $1-billion-revenue mark faster than any other company in history. By 1991, Compaq employed more than 10,000 people and operated in 65 countries. Since leaving Compaq in 1991, Canion has been involved in a long list of startups and early stage companies as an angel investor, advisor, and director. He helped found the Houston Technology Center in 1999 and the Goose Society of Texas in 2005, two organizations focused on encouraging entrepreneurs and helping early stage companies succeed. He is currently a director of Invesco, Ltd., ChaCha Search, Inc. and Houston Methodist Research Institute, and is an advisory director of Encore Health Resources and Dynamics, Inc." That's the formal part. The informal part is that I decided to write a book about the early years of Compaq because I didn't want Compaq to be forgotten. But after organizing the material and writing the first part of the book. I realized that we had played a key role in determining how the computer industry is structured today. Our efforts to promote the benefits of the PC open industry standard, and then to lead the revolt that prevented IBM from ending it, led to an unprecedented rate of technological advance during the 1990's and 2000's. If IBM had succeeded in taking control of the PC industry with their proprietary PS/2 in the late 1980's, there is no doubt that technology would have advanced much slower during those two decades. And Steve Jobs wouldn't have had the ingredients he needed to create the iPhone in 2007 and the iPad in 2010. When the necessary technology would have arrived is anyones guess, but if it arrived even a few years later, Steve wouldn't have been here to perform his magic. Where would Apple be today without the iPhone and iPad?

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