The Hotmail email service was launched on 4th July 1996 by Sabeer Bhatia and Jack Smith. It was one of the first free web-based (webmail) email services in the world along with Four 11’s RocketMail. The name was chosen because it had the four letters H, T, M and L in sequence. In fact, in the original logo the letters were in caps as in HoTMaiL.
In less than 2 years, Microsoft, the industry giant decided to buy the service for a staggering $400 million. The two founders became millionaires and the talk of the silicon valley. In contrast, Yahoo! had bought Four11 a few months before for $just 92 million.
The world's first hard disk couldn't be bought as an individual device. You had to get the computer with which it came. The computer, IBM305 RAMAC, itself was only available on lease for $3200 per month. [more...]