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 Post subject: 30 years of Macintosh
PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 2:38 pm 
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Obduction Backer

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Location: The Age of Reason
30 years ago today, Steve Jobs introduced the Macintosh. Apple just unveiled a webpage dedicated to its history, including a timeline.

Guess who's poster boy for 1993?


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:45 pm 
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Location: 56°2'26", -3°20'28"
I had one of those very first Apple Macintoshes - I think it maybe cost around £2200 back in 1984, with 128kB RAM. You got a 9" B/W display and 400kB 3.5" floppy drive. And no hard disk. But it was still an amazingly useful tool in it's day and you could get the OS, an application (or two) and the associated saved data all on the same floppy most of the time.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 26, 2014 8:00 pm 
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I had recently bought an Osborne 1 computer when I first saw a Mac. I wanted one. Being able to combine text with graphics was quite a concept for one who was just learning to write, text only, with a word processor. I couldn't afford the Mac, when a box of floppy diskettes was a major expense.

I used the Osborne for 6 years. I outgrew its 200K floppies. Tried an Atari 1040ST because it was cheaper than a Mac, and learned why. Not at all reliable. I wanted a Mac 2cx but couldn't afford that, so I bought a used Mac 512K enhanced and soon upgraded it to a Plus.

At the time the Mac came out, hard disks were about $1000 for a 10MB unit. By the time I bought mine, a 40MB drive was around $750 in an offboard enclosure. That made the machine much more usable, and, for a writer, 40MB was huge.

I did eventually buy the Mac 2cx. Color! 640X480. I got into doing graphics at work, so I took the machine there and bought an SE/30 for home use. I played "The Manhole" and "Cosmic Osmo" on that one. In 1997 I bought a brand-new Power Computing Mac clone. It had a CD-ROM drive, which enabled two things that led to major changes. One was, I played "Myst." The other was that I connected a set of speakers and used the computer to play music CDs. From there I moved to copying a song or two to the hard disk from CDs whose other songs I didn't care for. I played "Riven" on that one also.

For Myst 3 I had to buy a new Mac. That one worked fine but got displaced by a Powerbook I bought so that I could write when making a road trip. When Uru Prologue came out I couldn't play, and actually boycotted the game for a time because I felt Cyan had betrayed their Mac customers. In 2005, though, I caved and bought a PC. I was soon in the Cavern with the other Until Uru players.

The Mac now? It's a Mac Mini that is my all-purpose machine. Runs the 700GB music library, does the broadcasts. I use it for image editing, writing, Email, various other things. I still use the PC too. In the early days there was a clear difference but now, not so much. Macs have become more complicated, while PCs have become better integrated. The biggest reason I still use the Mac is for Nicecast, a very well organized Internet broadcast program that has no match on the PC that I know of.

When I upgraded my 512KE to Plus, a 1-MB Single in-line memory module was $150. That's about what it cost me to put 32GB in the PC. Some things in this world have gotten better.

Oh... I almost forgot. That illustrated story idea I had in 1984? I did a couple of them, and concluded that it was more trouble than it was worth. Then the Web came along, removing the need to print anything. So, now the closest thing I do to illustrated stories are the sculpture reports on my blog. Matching text with images is harder than I thought it would be.

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