The Apple PC

I am sure that insiders will forgive me when I calla computer from the Apple company a PC. Appleenthusiasts and IBM users sometimes seem to befighting a nearly religious war, but in fact an Applecomputer is a personal computer. It is of noimportance that the company designed itscomputers without any regard for the standardswhich were set by Microsoft and IBM.
So it was not an open system, but a proprietary one. It was not possible to simply open the case and drop in a new
accessory. At that time this could only be done with IBM computers.
Programs for an Apple computer could only run on an Apple. And the company expected a higher price for its products – no surprise as its suppliers did not really have any competition.Finally in 1984 the Apple PC became famous. At this time they launched the Macintosh, a strange little beast. Instead of the designers using several rectangular boxes, they decided on a compact little cabinet. This had a built-in black and white screen and could be carried around on a journey without too much problem, but the big attraction was the user interface, the way the Mac was operated.
So the first graphic user interface appeared in 1984 on the Mac. Apple had gone back to Xerox’s idea and by exploiting it had come up with an entirely new philosophy of computer use. While IBM users laboriously learnt commands and wore their fingers down to the bone on the keyboard, the Mac let the user move small symbols, like folders and files, around with the mouse . The use of the mouse was in itself something of a revolution! The little computer beast had to wait several years before it could win a similar victory on the IBM computer. At last the PC had become something for everyone. Unpack it, switch on, and start, that was the way it could be done with the friendly little Mac. Many small businesses and home users chose a Mac as their first computer. It was often a choice:
either a car, or a Mac!
Back them, when my friends enthused about ‘their Apple’ their eyes lit up. Everything was just SO easy! If you wanted to delete a file, for instance, all you had to do was drag it to the trash can, and I was sick in my head as I thought of my confusion with the dismal DOS computers I used at university. And as well as all this the developers had included a nice drawing program, a little musical program and even a flight simulator with these first Macs!
Overall this machine was especially useful for graphics, music and design. As early as 1985 a program appeared which could be used professionally for layout for newspapers and books – PageMaker. It is no surprise that Apple’s PC was
soon the first choice for graphic artists, designers and, later, for 􀃆 Multimedia-designers. Nowadays an Apple PC goes under the name of a Performa or a Power-Mac and looks like a ‘real PC’, with the usual separate screen. My first
meeting with a Mac was not until last year – during a temporary office job, but all my high expectations were dashed – obviously I must have encountered a whole series of ‘Monday morning’ machines.
The Apples worked slowly and crashed repeatedly –a crash is when nothing works and the machine freezes up. Not only this, there was always some machine or another which had to be sent to the workshop. Since then I have regularly come into contact with Macs, but my bad experiences have repeated themselves every time. I have always found that these machines worked more slowly and were less stabile than DOS computers.
Today little remains of the giant which was Apple. Bad production strategies have pushed the firm deep into the red, and now they are fighting just to survive. It is a shame, but in the fast moving computer market even large firms can disappear nearly overnight. There is one glimmer of hope: Microsoft itself is now giving Apple financial support! In
most of the world about 5 – 7% of PCs in use are Macs, in the USA this figure is still about 40%. A Mac is more than just a computer, it is a lifestyle!

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