Compaq Computer Corporation was a company founded in 1982, that developed, sold, and supported computers and related products and services. Compaq produced some of the first IBM PC compatible computers, being the first company to legally reverse engineer the IBM Personal Computer.
It rose to become the largest supplier of PC systems during the 1990s. Struggling in the aftermath of the dot-com bubble bust, Compaq was acquired for US$25 billion by HP in 2002. The Compaq brand remained in use by HP for lower-end systems until 2013 when, without warning, the Compaq name was quietly discontinued.
VMEbus (Versa Module Europa bus) is a computer bus standard, originally developed for the Motorola 68000 line of CPUs, but later widely used for many applications and standardized by the IEC as ANSI/IEEE 1014-1987. It is physically based on Eurocard sizes, mechanicals and connectors (DIN 41612), but uses its own signalling system, which Eurocard does not define. It was first developed in 1981 and continues to see widespread use today.
In 1979, during development of the Motorola 68000 CPU, one of their engineers, Jack Kister, decided to set about creating a standardized bus system for 68000-based systems. The Motorola team brainstormed for days to select the name VERSAbus. VERSAbus cards were large, 14.5″ by 9.25″, and used edge connectors. Only a few products adopted it, including the IBM System 9000 instrument controller and the Automatix robot and machine vision systems.
Kister was later joined by John Black, who refined the specifications and created the VERSAmodule product concept. A young engineer working for Black, Julie Keahey designed the first VERSAmodule card, the VERSAbus Adaptor Module, used to run existing cards on the new VERSAbus. Sven Rau and Max Loesel of Motorola-Europe added a mechanical specification to the system, basing it on the Eurocard standard that was then late in the standardization process. The result was first known as VERSAbus-E but was later renamed to VMEbus, for VERSAmodule Eurocard bus (although some refer to it as Versa Module Europa).
At this point, a number of other companies involved in the 68000’s ecosystem agreed to use the standard, including Signetics, Philips, Thomson, and Mostek. Soon it was officially standardized by the IEC as the IEC 821 VMEbus and by ANSI and IEEE as ANSI/IEEE 1014-1987.