15 Crazy Facts About The Apple Macintosh To Mark Its 30th Birthday

The Apple Macintosh is a renowned computer brand that was launched into the market more than three decades ago. Throughout the years, it has been able to set trends by releasing intricate patent designs that other brands have been keen to copy, all the while setting trends and launching genres of tech gadgets. However, some of them have turned out to be successes while others have simply failed to live up to expectations. Here are some more interesting facts about the brand that you were probably unaware of:



1. The Apple Lisa, which is one of the most expensive Mac computers, was named after Steve Job’s daughter Lisa. The machine had advanced multitasking capabilities and dual built-in floppy disk drives. This feature became available on the Mac OS X later on in the year 2000. It retailed for $10,000.


The Apple Mac ‘Lisa’

2. The popular ‘Orwellian Commercial’ that introduced Macintosh into the market in 1984 was directed by Ridley Scott. This is a renowned Hollywood director who shot into the limelight after directing the critically acclaimed movie Alien in 1979. He also directed the sci-fi hit Blade Runner in 1982.


3. Not many people are aware that all original Macs are autographed. The first model ever sold, which was the 128K Macintosh, had engraved signatures of all Macintosh employees. This included Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs.


4. The first 16-bit, 68000 based Mac had a 128KB RAM. This was quite low even for people who wanted the computer for basic use. This is especially when considering that 8-bit home computers such as Commodore, Radio Shack and Atari had 64KB RAM then.

5. Before 1987, all Mac computers were incapable of multitasking. The System 5, which had a windowed interface, was actually the first Mac capable of running several programs simultaneously. The System 6 was launched in 1988. It was a more advanced and capable version that was in use for several years. It was also incorporated into all Mac models.


6. In 1985, Steve Jobs was kicked out of Apple. He went ahead to form NEXT which made highly advanced computers. This brand was launched into the market in 1988. In 1996, Apple bought NEXT, a move that was followed by the reinstatement of Steve Jobs. The merger of the two companies saw the creation of the Mac OS X.


7. The first portable device that was launched in 1989 by Apple was a flop. The PowerBook predecessor had a sharp LCD screen and a powerful 68030 processor. The main disadvantages were that it weighed 16lbs and cost $6,500.


8. In 1991, trackballs were very popular. Apple had already corrected the mistake they had made in the first PowerBook. These modifications saw the release of a much slimmer, lighter PowerBook. It was a huge success. It consisted of three models—PowerBook 100, PowerBook 140 and PowerBook 170. These models featured the trackballs for mouse navigation.


9. In the early 90s, laptops were docked and used as desktops. They were converted into desktops by the use of several ports. The PowerBook Duo 210 was a convertible machine that was released in 1992. However, it lacked some important features such as an internal floppy disk drive and some significant ports. In addition, it was available in only one color—grayscale. It was quite portable weighing 4.2lbs when undocked.


10. In 1994, Apple released the Power Mac 7100 that initially had the codename Carl Sagan. When the billionaire discovered this, he filed a lawsuit against Apple but ended up losing. While the case was still in court, Apple outwitted Carl Sagan by changing the code name to BHA, an acronym for ‘Butthead Astronomer’. The model was released without Sagan’s name. Everyone quickly forgot the hullaballoo.

11. Later on in 1994, the PowerBook 500 was released. Apple made history because this was the first-ever laptop that featured a trackpad. Few years’ later, all other brands including HP and IBM had switched to trackpads. The pencil-nub pointers were consequently developed.


12. The wireless technology was introduced into the market 15 years ago. This means that all machines that were created before that time lacked wireless connectivity. Apple released the iBook in 1999. This was the first laptop that had that feature which was in the form of a built-in AirPort card.


13. In 2000, Apple released the G4 cube. The model was a failure despite its artistic aesthetic appeal. Most users complained of hairline cracks that appeared on the plastic casing making it unsightly. This Mac model cost $1,799 without a monitor.

14. In March 2001, the first OS X version named ‘Cheetah’ was released. This was a completely different operating system. Apple continued using cat names for eight of the newer versions of the operating system.

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