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Desktop Engineering Ltd – a historical perspective

Desktop Engineering celebrates 35 years in business

History – early years

The company was founded on 6 February 1986, initially called Oxford Technical Software Ltd, by Dr William Trinder and Mr Geoffrey Haines. Both founders were then working at Oxford Magnet Technology, the developer and manufacturer of superconducting magnets for NMR scanners.

At the time, Dr Trinder was Marketing Manager, and Mr Haines was Technical Manager to their principle customer Siemens Healthcare. During a trip to Germany in 1985, they both discussed the emerging power and capability of Personal Computers (PC) and how this would change the way engineers design products. The initial vision, to write engineering design software for PC’s then took form.

Working on early microprocessor computers, initial prototype analysis software was commenced in order to formulate interfaces and capabilities. However, it became apparent that in order to catch the wave of new software emanating from the USA they decided to acquire UK distribution rights for selected applications. The first product acquired was a finite element analysis (FEA) program from Algor Inc – one of the first FEA applications available on IBM PC’s running MS-DOS. The company started trading formally on 1 July 1986. 

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