Apple Computer Inc. was founded by Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs and Ronald Wayne on the 1st April 1976. Ronald Wayne soon sold his stock to Jobs and Wozniak, but the success of the Apple 1 inspired them to go on and develop the hugely successful Apple II.
From 1976 until today, Apple has had three name variations: Apple Computer Company (1976-1977) Apple Computer Inc. (1977-2007), and Apple Inc. (2007-present). We typically refer to the company as Apple.
The Apple 1 went on sale in July 1976 as an assembled circuit board. They produced just 200 of their Apple 1 computer which was extremely well received, even though it was simply a circuit board to which the owner had to add a keyboard and monitor. It had a retail price of $666.66. We are very lucky to have a replica of this computer in our museum. The operating system was a simple System Monitor. It had a BASIC Interpreter written by Steve Wozniak called Integer BASIC.
The Apple II (sometimes styled as Apple ][) was a series of computers as detailed below which used an operating system.
The Apple III (sometimes styled as Apple ///) is a business-oriented personal computer released in 1980. Running the Apple SOS (Sophisticated Operating System), it was intended as the successor to the Apple II, but was largely considered a failure in the market. It was designed to provide key features business users wanted in a personal computer: a true typewriter-style upper/lowercase keyboard (the Apple II only supported uppercase) and an 80-column display. We also hold an Apple III Plus in our collection.
In 1983, Apple released the Apple Lisa, a desktop computer. It had a graphical user interface (GUI) targeted at individual business users. Development began in 1978. It had a 5MB hard drive. Lisa was affected by its high price, insufficient software, unreliable Apple FileWare disks, and the immediate release of the cheaper and faster Apple Macintosh. Only 10,000 Apple Lisas were sold in two years.
Apple Macintosh XL was a modified version of the Apple Lisa personal computer made by Apple Computer, Inc. In the Macintosh XL configuration, the computer shipped with MacWorks XL, a Lisa program that allowed 64 K Macintosh ROM emulation.
The Lisa came with a bundle of seven software applications, running on top of a modified Apple SOS with a GUI called the Lisa Office System, an operating system that featured protected memory and pre-emptive multitasking. The seven software applications included were LisaWrite (word processing), LisaCalc (spreadsheet), LisaDraw (vector graphics), LisaGraph (graphing), LisaProject (project management), LisaList (to-do lists), and LisaTerminal (terminal emulator for network communications).
Conceptually, the Lisa resembled the Xerox Star in the sense that it was envisioned as an office computing system. Lisa has two main user modes: the Lisa Office System and the Workshop. The Lisa Office System is the GUI environment. The Lisa Office System was eventually renamed "7/7", in reference to the seven supplied application programs: LisaWrite, LisaCalc, LisaDraw, LisaGraph, LisaProject, LisaList, and LisaTerminal.
The Workshop is a program development environment and is almost entirely text-based, though it uses a GUI text editor. It could be run to develop Lisa software, and later was used to develop the Macintosh System and early Macintosh software. Around 1986, the Lisa Workshop was replaced with the Macintosh Programmer's Workshop which ran inside the Macintosh operating system.
Starting in 1984, Apple also sold the MacWorks Macintosh virtualization environment, which allowed Lisa computers to run Macintosh software. MacWorks 1.0 ran System Software 0.1, MacWorks 2.0 ran System Software 0.3 and 0.5, and MacWorks 3.0 ran System Software 0.5.
The original Macintosh 128K came in a beige case containing a 9 in (23 cm) CRT monitor and came with a keyboard and mouse. It played a pivotal role in establishing desktop publishing. It was shipped with the very first System and Finder application, known to the public as "System 1.0" (formally known as System 0.97 and Finder 1.0). The applications MacPaint and MacWrite were bundled with the Mac. Other programs available included MacProject, MacTerminal and Microsoft Word. Programming languages available at the time included MacBASIC, MacPascal and the Macintosh 68000 Development System.
The Macintosh SE/30 had a black-and-white monitor and could be expanded up to 128 MB of RAM (a significant amount of RAM at the time), and included a 40 or 80 MB hard drive. It was also the first compact Mac to include a 1.44 MB high density floppy disk drive as standard. The power of the SE/30 was demonstrated by its use to produce the This Week newspaper, the first colour tabloid newspaper in the UK to use new, digital pre-press technology on a personal, desktop computer. "SE" is an initialism for "System Expansion". Apple had been naming all computers using the 68030 processers with an "x", such as the IIx and IIcx. When it came time to put the 68030 processor into the SE series, they prudently decided that calling it the Macintosh "SEx" wasn't the best marketing idea, so they settled on "SE 30".
The Macintosh Color Classic (sold as the Macintosh Colour Classic in PAL regions and Macintosh Color Deluxe in Japan) is a personal computer sold from February 1993 to May 1995 (up to January 1998 in PAL markets). It has an "all-in-one PC" design, based on a Motorola 68030 CPU running at 16 MHz with a small, integrated 10″ Sony Trinitron display at 512 × 384 pixel resolution. The display is capable of supporting up to thousands of colours with a video memory upgrade.
The Apple Macintosh II sold from March 1987 to January 1992 was based on the Motorola 68020 32-bit CPU, it was the first Macintosh supporting colour graphics., its pricing meant it competed with workstations from Silicon Graphics, Sun Microsystems, and Hewlett-Packard.
The Macintosh II was updated with a more powerful CPU and sold as the Macintosh IIx. In early 1989, the more compact Macintosh IIcx was introduced at a price similar to the original Macintosh II, and by the beginning of 1990 sales stopped altogether. Motherboard upgrades that could turn a Macintosh II into a IIx or Macintosh IIfx were offered by Apple.
Next was the Macintosh LC family, with LC standing for “Low Cost”. They were also known as “Elsie”. It was introduced at half the price of the Macintosh II but was significantly lesser in performance overall, so that could be sold to schools for the same price as an Apple IIGS. It was introduced in October 1990, then subsequently replaced by Macintosh LC II, which was largely the same but was built around a Motorola 68030 processor.
The Performa line of Macintoshes re-used models from Apple's Quadra, Centris, LC, and Power Macintosh families, with model numbers that denoted the included software packages or hard drive sizes. Whereas non-Performa Macintosh computers were sold by Apple Authorized Resellers, the Performa was sold in the USA through big-box stores and mass-market retailers such as Good Guys, Circuit City, and Sears and in Europe through department stores and mass-market retailers.
The initial series consisted of the Macintosh Classic II-based Performa 200, the LC II-based Performa 400, and the IIvi-based Performa 600. Unlike the professional Macintosh computers, each individual Performa bundle was given a unique model number, in some cases varying only by the software bundle or the specific retailer that sold that model. This was intended to accommodate retailers, who could advertise that they could beat their competitors' price on equivalent models while at the same time ensuring that they did not actually carry the same models as their competitors. To help personal users choose between the options available to them, Apple created multiple paid advertisements.
After releasing around sixty-four different models, Apple retired the Performa brand in early 1997, shortly after release of the Power Macintosh 5500, 6500, 8600 and 9600, as well as the return of Steve Jobs to the company. The Performa brand's lifespan coincided with a period of significant financial turmoil at Apple due in part to the proliferation of different models and low sales of Performa machines.
The Macintosh Portable sold from September 1989 to October 1991 and was the first battery-powered Macintosh. It featured a fast, sharp, and expensive black-and-white active matrix LCD screen in a hinged design that covered the keyboard when the machine was not in use. The Portable was one of the early consumer laptops to employ an active matrix panel - only the most expensive of the initial PowerBook line, the PowerBook 170, had such a panel. The machine was designed to deliver high performance, at the cost of increased price and weight.
The Macintosh Centris family came along as a replacement for the six-year-old Macintosh II family of computers. The name was chosen to indicate that the consumer was selecting a Macintosh in the center of Apple's product line. Centris machines were the first to offer Motorola 68040 CPUs at a price point making them significantly less expensive (albeit slower) than Macintosh Quadra computers, but also offering higher performance than the Macintosh LC computers of the time.
The Macintosh Quadra family sold from October 1991 to October 1995. The Quadra, named after the Motorola 68040 central processing unit, replaced the Macintosh II family as the high-end Macintoshes.
The first models were the Quadra 700 and Quadra 900, both introduced in October 1991. The Quadra 800, 840AV and 605 were added through 1993. The Macintosh Centris line was merged with the Quadra in October 1993, adding the 610, 650 and 660AV to the range. After the introduction of the Power Macintosh line in early 1994, Apple continued to produce and sell new Quadra models; the 950 continued to be sold until October, 1995.
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