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HP-IB and GPIB

The first bus which has been specially geared for measurement technology was developed in the late 1960ies by Hewlett Packard, initially as the HP-IB (Hewlett Packard Interface Bus). Soon, the HP-IB was submitted for general standardization as GPIB (General Purpose Interface Bus / IEEE 488) and soon experienced a story of success in the measurement industry. Until after the turn of the millennium, the GPIB standard was continually modified and adapted to new developments in measurement technology. One of the main goals was to enable the bus to keep pace with steadily increasing data transmission speeds. One of the problems was that the new, faster GPIB versions were not necessarily compatible with older versions, which made it difficult to combine older with new measurement instruments. Despite these disadvantages, many measurement instruments are equipped with this interface to this day.