Applied Data Research

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Applied Data Research
Fate Acquired
Successor Ameritech
Founded 1959
Founder Martin Goetz, Sherman Blumenthal, Ellwood Kauffman, Dave McFadden, Bernard Riskin, Robert Wickenden, and Stephen Wright
Defunct 1986
Headquarters Princeton, New Jersey, United States
Services independent contract programming

Applied Data Research (ADR) was a large software vendor from the 1960s until the mid-1980s. ADR is often described as "the first independent software vendor".[1]

Founded in 1959, ADR was originally a contract development company. ADR eventually built a series of its own products. ADR's widely used major packages included: Autoflow for automatic flowcharting, ROSCOE (Remote OS Conversational Operating Environment), and Librarian for source-code management. ADR later purchased the Datacom/DB database management system from Insyte Datacom and developed the companion product, IDEAL (Interactive Development Environment for an Application’s Life), a fourth-generation programming language.

First software patent[edit]

ADR received the first Patent issued for a computer program, a sorting system, on April 23, 1968.[2] The program was developed by Martin A. Goetz[3]

ADR IBM lawsuit[edit]

ADR instigated litigation in Federal Court against IBM [4] with accusations that IBM was "retarding the growth of the independent software industry" [4] and "monopolizing the software industry", leading to IBM's famous unbundling of software and services in 1969. In 1970, ADR and Programmatics, a wholly owned subsidiary of ADR, received an out-of-court settlement of $1.4 million from IBM. IBM also agreed to serve as a supplier of Autoflow, which could mean another $600,000 in revenues for ADR.[5]

ADR is sold[edit]

ADR was sold to Ameritech in 1986 and was kept intact as a subsidiary. In 1988 Ameritech sold ADR to Computer Associates. Computer Associates integrated the company into its Systems Products Division and new Information Products Division.[6]


  1. ^ "Prerelational DBMS vendors — a quick overview". Software Memories, 9 February 2006. Retrieved 5 August 2011. 
  2. ^ United States Patent Office, Patent number: 3380029
  3. ^ New York Times , June 12, 1968, "Computer Program Patent", p. 69
  4. ^ a b The Washington Post, April 23, 1969, Dow Jones News Service, "Suit Against IBM Charges Violations", p. D9
  5. ^ New York Times , Douglas W. Cray, August 21, 1970, "A.D.R. Trust Suit Settled by I.B.M.", p. 50
  6. ^ Applied Data Research, Software Products Division Records, 1959-1987, Charles Babbage Institute, University of Minnesota.

External links[edit]