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December 16, 1987

DANA BECOMES ARDENT, SETS GRAPHICS CPU FOR EARLY 1988

By CBR Staff Writer

This probably belongs at the bottom of the back page rather than here at the front, but Allen Michels has decided to rename his Sunnyvale, California start-up Ardent Computer Corp, the name being chosen because it reflects the zeal with which our team has met the challenge of defining and creating the first of a new class of computer – one that dedicates supercomputer-level power with high-performance three-dimensional graphics to individuals whose work is of the highest priority to a company or research lab. The two-year-old firm, formerly Dana Computer Inc, changed its name to get around trademark conflicts with similarly named companies. Michels said that prototype units of Ardent’s Titan personal graphics supercomputer are now running at the firm’s Sunnyvale headquarters and a formal introduction is scheduled for the first quarter of 1988. Ardent was founded in November 1985 by Michels, former president and co-founder of Convergent Technologies, and a team of entrepreneurs and technologists from Convergent, DEC, Burroughs, Hewlett-Packard and Amdahl. The most recently named executive, vice president of engineering and research and development Gordon Bell, was the key designer of two generations of DEC minicomputers. Ardent has so far raised $32m in two rounds of equity finance, $19m from industrial equipment maker Kubota Ltd of Japan.

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