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A rocket's path charted

 

    Fall 1992 to January 1997
    Fall
    1992
      Marc Andreessen, an undergraduate at the University of Illinois and an employee of the university's National Center for Supercomputing Applications, develops the idea for the NCSA Mosaic client to browse the Internet.

    Early
    1993
      The first version of Mosaic is distributed free to the public.

    Spring
    1993
      Andreessen receives bachelor's degree in computer science from the University of Illinois.

    April
    1994
      Andreessen and Jim Clark, founder of Silicon Graphics, found Mosaic Communications.

    Oct.
    1994
      The company offers Netscape Navigator for free on the Internet to individual, academic, and research users.

    Nov.
    1994

      Mosaic Communications changes name to Netscape Communications to "further establish" its identity and "accommodate concerns" of Mosaic licensee University of Illinois.

    Jan.
    1995

      Jim Barksdale, formerly with FedEx, McCaw Cellular, and AT&T Wireless Services, surprises industry watchers by joining Netscape, then a small start-up.

    June
    1995

      Netscape files a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission for a proposed initial public offering. Morgan Stanley and Hambrecht & Quist act as comanagers for the underwriting group.

    Aug.
    1995
      Netscape goes public at $28 a share. On its first day of trading, the stock zooms upward to close at $58.25.

    The same month, Microsoft releases version 1.0 of its Internet Explorer, vowing to wrest the nascent browser market from Netscape's clutches.

    Sept.
    1995

      Netscape releases Netscape Navigator 2.0, which integrates an email and newsreader with its browser.

    Oct.
    1995

      Netscape reports its first profit, $635,000 or 1 cent per share, for the third quarter of 1995. It posts a loss for the entire year, though, of $3.44 million or 5 cents a share.

    Feb.
    1996
      Microsoft announces a plan to reorganize the company to focus more directly on the Internet market. The move is widely seen as a response to budding competition from Netscape and other younger Internet companies.
    March
    1996
      Another day in the browser war: One day after Netscape announced a licensing agreement for its Navigator browser with America Online, the online service said it would make Microsoft's Internet Explorer its standard, built-in browser.

    Aug.
    1996

      Netscape's lawyers complain to the Justice Department that Microsoft is deliberately preventing companies from using its NT Workstation to run third-party Web server applications like Netscape's FastTrack Web server. Microsoft hotly disputes the charge.

    Sept.
    1996
      A Zona Research survey of 150 technology managers at U.S. corporations indicates that 83 percent of respondents use Navigator as their primary browser, while Internet Explorer's share has more than doubled since earlier in the year with about 8 percent of respondents claiming it as their preferred browser.

    Jan.
    1997

      Netscape says it has delivered 1 million of its Internet and intranet servers in 1996 and sees accelerating momentum for its products. But the company's stock is under pressure after some analysts said the company might not meet earnings expectations for the fourth quarter.