Dearly Departed: Companies and Products That Didn't Deserve to Die

Some products just didn't deserve to die. But they did, because the companies made bad business decisions. We revisit several of our favorites--from minicomputers to software utilities--and mourn the best and brightest that died an untimely death.

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Turbo ran out of gas ...

  • Image
  • Company: Borland Software Corp.
  • Born: 1983
  • Reborn: 2001 (renamed Borland)
  • Born again: 2006 (changed focus to application lifecycle management)
  • Died: 1998 (name change to Inprise)
  • Cause of Death: Philippe Kahn's departure
  • Founders: Philippe Kahn and Spencer Ozawa
  • Most well-known product(s): Turbo Pascal, Turbo C, SideKick
  • Why we miss them: Development tools for the masses; their "no-nonsense license agreement" that let you install the software on several machines, as long as only one copy was in use at any time.
  • Lasting image/quote: "Philippe's greatest contribution is radical guerrilla marketing. The fact that he sold his compiler for $49 through the mail was amazing [at the time]." -Sheldon Laube, chairman of CenterBeam Inc., 1999

Next: Lack of cash trumped innovation>>

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