Antedating of "Firmware"

Jesse Sheidlower jester at PANIX.COM
Fri Sep 11 09:59:20 UTC 2009

On Thu, Sep 10, 2009 at 08:03:52PM -0400, Shapiro, Fred wrote:
> The OED's first use for _firmware_ is dated 1968.  According to Wikipedia, it appeared earlier in:
> Opler, Ascher (January 1967). "Fourth-Generation Software". Datamation 13 (1): 22-24.

Yes, this is the canonical first quote, and we have it:

1967 _Datamation_ Jan. 22/2, I believe it worthwhile to
introduce a new word into our vocabulary: _firmware_. I use
this term to designate microprograms resident in the
computer's control memory, which specializes the logical
design for a special purpose, e.g. the emulation of another

Jesse Sheidlower

The American Dialect Society -

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