Javaare three of the most popular programming languages in use today.
Cwas created in the early 70s,
C++in the early 80s, and
Javais a tool of the 90s.
- MULTICS project late 60s (GE,MIT,Bell Labs) -- Multiplexed Information and Computing Service is a timesharing operating system begun in 1965 and still in use today.
- Ken Thompson (ken) at Bell Labs works on Unix  using the
Bprogramming languages (late 60s...) B Reference Manual) programming languages.
- Dennis Ritchie (dmr) creates C  (1972, Unix written in C)
- Text processing commands written for the Unix system and Unix gets its first customer: the patent department within Bell Telephone Laboratories.
- K&R C (1978, Brian Kernighan (bwk) and Ritchie)
- Work started on C++ by Bjarne Stroustrup (bs) (1979).
- Work started on ANSI C (1983).
- First implementation of C++ (1983).
- ANSI and STDC Library (1989) standards completed.
- Work started on ANSI C++ (1989).
- The Java programming language goes "public" in 1995 (originally called
Oakand was started in early 1990s; created by guru programmer James Gosling (jag) at Sun Microsystems).
- ANSI C++ and STDC++ Library (Andrew Koenig (ark)) standardized (including ISO).
Hyperlinks Out Into the WWW
 Writings From the Past are notes about the history of Unix from Dennis Ritchie.
 The Development of the C Programming Language is a paper by Dennis Ritchie that was presented at the Second History of Programming Languages conference, Cambridge, Mass., April, 1993.
A Unix Advertisement from 1981. The advertisement contains the following verbiage:Developed for our own use, UNIX Systems are available under license from Western Electric and come " as is". With no maintenance agreements, and no technical support.
Unix and Beyond: An Interview with Ken Thompson was conducted by the IEEE Computer Society during May, 1999.
Plan 9 is a distributed operating system that Thompson and Ritchie worked on after Unix. During Year 2000, it was made into an Open Source project.
The National Medal of Technology was awarded to Thompson and Ritchie on 27 April 1999 by President Clinton.
Hobbes' Internet Timeline v5.5 allows you to compare the C, C++, Java development schedule with that of the Internet. And this Computer Timeline provides good history of computing.
Grace Hopper developed the first complete compiler when she was with the Remington Rand Corporation in 1952. Hopper is also the co-inventor of COBOL and she coined the term bug. Note: I'm trying to get programmers to adopt the term defect instead of bug. [December 2001:: Betty Holberton Died]
[More] Wikipedia: History of computing