Middle Years

After much searching (mainly by John), we located a small building in Dedham, the next town over. It was also a small house in a commercial zone, but this time we got the whole thing. It needed complete remodeling, and we hired much of the work done, but the Pratts also spent several months after business hours working on it ourselves.

Finally, we made the move, changed the phone numbers and stationery, and reopened for business in Dedham. Dana was able to hire some much-needed office support staff to help with the phones, mailings, marketing campaigns, shipping, etc. And, since none of the Pratts particularly enjoyed the sales end of the business, we hired a full-time sales manager. It was what Paul loved to do, and he was good at it!

The company was starting to do more and more trade shows (Applefest, Commodore and Atari shows, Consumer Electronics and Comdex shows in Las Vegas, many education shows). We had a spiffy trade show booth made, and got the show routine down to a science. John, Vivian, and Paul were the primary ones to work the shows.

Our product development saw us move into some important areas. Besides developing a ComputerEyes version for the Atari ST, we made big splashes with versions for the Apple Macintosh and Apple IIgs. But the product with the biggest impact was (as you might expect) ComputerEyes for the IBM PC.

PCs hadn't been considered very graphics-oriented but, with the advent of VGA graphics adapters, that all changed. We developed a black-and-white digitizer for PCs and compatibles, started attending PC-oriented trade shows, and ComputerEyes for the PC became our biggest seller.

And then along came ... COLOR! As the graphics capabilites of the various computers improved over the years, so did ComputerEyes, and this included capturing color images. We developed versions of ComputerEyes for PCs, Macintosh, Atari ST, and Apple IIgs capable of capturing images in full, vivid color (although still requiring a scan time of several seconds).

These products (and the fact that home and office computers were becoming more graphics-capable in general) led to even more growth for Digital Vision, and before long we outgrew our overstuffed little building and were forced to move again. There are worse problems a company can have ......

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