Just 25 years ago, Apple changed the way people used computers, triggering a revolution with the launch of the Apple Mac computer.
It's unthinkable today to imagine not using a mouse to interact with your PC, or being able to drag-and-drop files around into folders or applications.
But, before the Mac came on the scene, these things simply didn't exist for computer users.
Long before Windows was a usable system, Apple had adopted a graphical user interface partly developed in Xerox's Palo Alto Research Centre (Parc) and implemented it as the first widespread GUI (graphical user interface) available.
The Mac was also revolutionary in that it boasted the first mouse and also allowed keyboard shortcuts.
I was privileged to be one of the first users in South Africa to own and use an Apple Mac computer, with that first machine boasting 128kb of RAM and a single floppy drive capable of running 512kb disk. And, no, those numbers are correct – people used to run computers with these – by today's standards – laughably low memory and storage space.
My particular Mac was boosted with an external floppy drive, which could run an additional 512kb disk.
We wrote and produced magazines and newspapers on this machine, marvelling at how quick and easy the process was compared to the old methods.
Of course, the rest of the industry quickly caught up and today all computers are intuitive and easy to use – but it was that first Mac, brainchild of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, that blazed the trail that all others were to follow.
– Kathy Gibson