The History of Computers

  • The Altair 8800

    The Altair 8800
    The Altair 8800 only had 256 bytes of memory and there was no keyboard or monitor. The switches on the front were used to enter data in machine codes. The lights on the front indicated results of a program.
  • Apple I

    Apple I
    Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak formed the Apple Computer.
  • Apple II

    Apple II
    The Apple II featured a color monitor, sound, and game paddles. The operating system was stored in ROM, and it had 4 KB of RAM. The Apple II had optional floppy disk to load programs.
  • The Commodore PET

    The Commodore PET
    The Commodore PET was popular in business settings in Europe. PET stands for Personal Electronic Transactor. The PET has a built-in display, it looks like a monitor on top, but it is part of the machine and does not come off. The Commodore PET also has a built-in cassette drive.
  • TRS-80

    The TRS-80 was introduced by Radio Shack and was aimed at the US consumer market. There were 10,000 units sold in the first month. The TRS-80 has monochrome display, 4 KB of RAM, and circuitry hidden under the keyboard.
  • The Osborne

    The Osborne
    The Osborne Company introduced the first portable computer, the Osborne. It weighed 24.5 pounds and it had a 5 inch screen. The Osborne had 64 kilobytes of RAM as well as two floppy disk drives. It was preinstalled with spreadsheet and word processing software.
  • IBM PC

    IBM PC
    The IBM PC marketed to businesses and consumers. It had 64 KB to 256 KB of RAM and optional floppy disk drives. Hard disks were not supported in early models of the IBM PC.
  • The Lisa

    The Lisa
    Apple introduced the Lisa, the first successful personal computer brought to market that used a GUI (graphical user interface). The Lisa provided features such as windows, drop down menus, icons, a file system with folders and files, and a mouse.
  • The Macintosh

    The Macintosh
    The Macintosh was everything the Lisa was and more. It was also a third of the cost of the Lisa. The Macintosh was the first personal computer to utilize 3.5 inch floppy disks with a hard cover.