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Definition: PLATO


(1) (Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations) Developed by Daniel Alpert and Donald Bitzer at the University of Illinois in 1960, PLATO was the first computer-based training (CBT) system to combine graphics and touch-sensitive screens for interactive training. In the late 1960s, the National Science Foundation (NSF) funded the project, and the Computer-based Education Research Laboratory (CERL) was formed. In the 1970s and 1980s, Control Data Corporation (CDC) donated computers, developed PLATO courseware and created a new division to market it. The investment was not profitable and PLATO was eventually abandoned.

(2) The code name for Microsoft's OLAP extensions to SQL Server. See Microsoft SQL Server OLAP Services.