Prentice Hall is an American major educational publisher owned by Savvas Learning Company. Prentice Hall publishes print and digital content for the 6–12 and higher-education market. Prentice Hall distributes its technical titles through the Safari Books Online e-reference service.
On October 13, 1913, law professor Charles Gerstenberg and his student Richard Ettinger founded Prentice Hall. Gerstenberg and Ettinger took their mothers' maiden names—Prentice and Hall—to name their new company. Prentice Hall became known as a publisher of trade books by authors such as Norman Vincent Peale; elementary, secondary, and college textbooks; loose-leaf information services; and professional books.
Prentice Hall was acquired by Gulf+Western in 1984, and became part of that company's publishing division Simon & Schuster. S&S sold several Prentice Hall subsidiaries: Deltak and Resource Systems were sold to National Education Center. Reston Publishing was closed.
In 1989, Prentice Hall Information Services was sold to Macmillan Inc.. In 1990, Prentice Hall Press, a trade book publisher, was moved to Simon & Schuster Trade and Prentice Hall's reference & travel was moved to Simon & Schuster's mass market unit. Publication of trade books ended in 1991. In 1994, Gulf+Western successor Paramount was sold to Viacom. Prentice Hall Legal & Financial Services was sold to CSC Networks and CDB Infotek. Wolters Kluwer acquired Prentice Hall Law & Business. Simon & Schuster's educational division, including Prentice Hall, was sold to Savvas Learning Company by G+W successor Viacom in 1998.
Prentice Hall is the publisher of Magruder's American Government as well as Biology by Ken Miller and Joe Levine. Their artificial intelligence series includes Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach by Stuart J. Russell and Peter Norvig and ANSI Common Lisp by Paul Graham. They also published the well-known computer programming book The C Programming Language by Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie and Operating Systems: Design and Implementation by Andrew S. Tanenbaum. Other titles include Dennis Nolan's Big Pig (1976), Monster Bubbles: A Counting Book (1976), Alphabrutes (1977), Wizard McBean and his Flying Machine (1977), Witch Bazooza (1979), Llama Beans (1979, with author Charles Keller, and The Joy of Chickens (1981).
In "personal computer" history
A Prentice Hall subsidiary, Reston Publishing, was in the foreground of technical-book publishing when microcomputers were first becoming available. It was still unclear who would be buying and using "personal computers", and the scarcity of useful software and instruction created a publishing market niche whose target audience yet had to be defined. In the spirit of the pioneers who made PCs possible, Reston Publishing's editors addressed non-technical users with the reassuring, and mildly experimental, Computer Anatomy for Beginners by Marlin Ouverson of People's Computer Company. They followed with a collection of books that was generally by and for programmers, building a stalwart list of titles relied on by many in the first generation of microcomputers users.