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The Mac at 25!

The DigiBarn Computer Museum Celebrates
The 25th Anniversary (Happy Birthday!) of the Apple Macintosh Computer!
DigiBarn's Mac at 25 Special Online Exhibit of Rare MacArtifacts

Quiz: who is this little guy? (see answer at bottom of page)

Bruce and others from the Digibarn crew and others appeared on stage at MacWorld 2009 in San Francisco for their part in the new feature documentary MacHeads the Movie (January 7, 2009)

Why we are celebrating!

On January 24, 1984 the personal computing movement was changed forever with the Superbowl launch of Apple's Macintosh computer. While the graphical user interface, mouse, and bitmapped display+printing had been around for more than a decade, the Mac represented the first combining of these key innovations into a beautifully crafted package that an ordinary consumer could pick up and use in daily life. The Mac went on to spawn several revolutions including the "Desktop Publishing" phenomenon of the 80s. This site is a special project of the DigiBarn Computer Museum to bring together some of the rarest artifacts relating to the Mac (many never seen online or published in any way). We will also pull together many materials that will give you an idea of where the Mac came from, predecessor systems, people and organizations, and where the Mac fits today in our evolutionary tree of visual computing. We hope you like this online exhibit and hope you will take the time to let us know about any other artifacts, stories or comments we can include to help this effort in 2009, the Mac's 25th birthday year (actually this is the 30th anniversary of its conception by Jef Raskin)!

OK, now check out the Stuff, the People, the Macintosh Way, the Predecessors, the Mac in the Family Tree, Weird Mac, the Relatives of the Mac, Your Mac Memes, Other Mac 25th Anniversary Coverage

The Stuff (Rare Hardware and Other Artifacts from the Prehistory & Early Years of the Mac)

128K Mac with original packaging (1984)

Building the Mac!
A special online exhibit of rare hardware artifacts that represent the effort to build the Mac from 1979 to 1983

Documenting the Mac!
A special online exhibit of rare document artifacts that represent the effort to build the Mac from 1979 to 1983

Also see our large collection of Apple computers and other artifacts

Folklore.org, Andy Hertzfeld's superb site on Apple and Macintosh folklore, written by those who where there!

AppleLore, Apple Computer History Weblog. (sponsored by the Computer History Museum)

The Mothership
, an excellent site all about Apple (Mac, Lisa, Apple II), including ads, downloadable historic software, timelines, columns and much, much more!

Stanford Universities Early Macintosh (1979-81) site.

See our artifacts: DigiBarn's original Macintosh with packaging and Macintosh Division cap (worn by original team) and Macintosh 16 page brochure (published December 1983) and screen shots of the Macintosh OS, version 1.1 (1984) and

Chuck Colby and his famous innovations
(including the MacColby and many other early Macintosh innovations)

The People (Who Made the Mac, Who Produced the Predecessors)

Early Macintosh Division Org Chart
(from mid 1981)

Jef Raskin
, the "Father of the Mac" and the rest of the Gang of Four (Brian Howard, Marc LeBrun, Burrell Smith)

Andy Hertfeld's commentary The Father of the Macintosh at folklore.org

The story of most members of the Mac Dream Team (Daniel Kotte, Jobs, Atkinson, Hertzfeld, Tribble, Kare, Espinosa, Fernandez, Horn, Smith and many others can be found at Folklore.org

Interview with Macintosh Design Team from 1984
Interview with Jef Raskin, Bud Tribble and Brian Howard

Mac Market Making Moguls:
Steve Paul Jobs, Guy Kawasaki and others to be included here soon.

The Xerox team that produced the Alto
(see video of our Alto/30th birthday panel!)

The Macintosh Way (reality or reality distortion? religion or cult?)

Seeding the Marketing Message of the Mac,
the December 1983 16 page brochure that launched the Mac and also see The Macintosh Marketing campaign

See Marcin Wichary's excellent commemorative Macintosh 20th Anniversary posters
derived from the original 16 page brochure (and updated to 2004).

View the original 1984 Superbowl ad
(Quicktime format)

Where is the Mac today? Track the Mac into the future at Apple.com.

The Predecessors (The Companies, The Machines)

Apple's Lisa
its business-oriented computer system & the first Apple system with a graphical user interface (released January 1983)

Xerox, Xerox PARC and the birth of the personal workstation
(the project began in 1973 and was the proving ground for much of what came later, including the Xerox Star, Lisa, Mac, Windows and others)

The Xerox Star 8010
, introduced in the Spring of 1981, Star set the standard for networked compuers with graphical user interfaces and was the definitive environment until the world caught up in the 1990s.

The Three Rivers PERQ (a commercial rendition of the Xerox Alto, Mach Kernel's birthplace and the home of the groundbreaking Intran publishing system)

The Mac in the Family Tree (Cousin Mac in the Family Tree of Visual Computing Systems)

See where the Mac fits in the DigiBarn's Evolutionary "Bushy" Tree of Visual Computing

Windows 1.0
, Microsoft's wanna GUI "foot in the door" in 1985

The Explosion of the Graphical User Interface
Since 1984 (a grande collection indeed!)

Weird Mac (odd variants of the Mac)

Weird Machines (derivatives) the MIKO and the Black Macs (tempested Cold Warriors)

Relatives of the Mac (What Be NeXT or direct offspring or cousins)

Your Mac Memes (How Did it Change YOUR Life?)

See our Community Input pages for your input, which is now streaming in.

Also see DigiBarn Curator Bruce Damer's Commentary on 25 years of the Mac!

Other Mac 25th Anniversary Coverage (Mac@25 and original Mac@20in the Press)

See excellent stories in the Mac at 20 by the good folks at Wired News including:
The Macintosh's Twisted Truth
(by Owen Linzmayer, Jan 10, 2004)
The 20 Macs that Mattered Most
(by Owen Linzmayer, Jan 9, 2004)
We're All Mac Users Now
(by Leander Kahney, Jan 6, 2004)
Apple's Unlikely Guardian Angel
(by Leander Kahney, Jan 8, 2004)
Mac Founders Push for New Ideas
(by Daniel Terdiman, Jan 6, 2004)

Radio and TV:
National Public Radio coverage of the Mac at 20 (Talk of the Nation, Neal Conan, Jan 20, 2004)

Steve Jobs on the Mac's 20th Anniversary, Exclusive Interview (Jason Snell, Jan 2004)
The Mac Turns 20 Looking Back on the Mac (Adam Engst, Jan 2004)
Happy Anniversary, Macintosh (Jan 2004)
Twenty-Twenty Vision (by Jason Snell, Jan 2004)

Apple's core: The Mac turns 20 (by Marsha Walton, Jan 24, 2004)

The San Jose Mercury News stories are also worth a look:
The Mac that Roared (bjy Jon Fortt, Jan 18, 2004)
And Merc articles from the original Mac launch in January 1984: A look at secret new Apple computer and How the Macintosh computer grew

Also worth seeing:
Forbes.com's Happy Birthday Mac (by Quentin Hardy, Dec 15, 2003)
10th birthday of the Mac in 1994, Happy Birthday Mac (by Al Fasholdt)

The DigiBarn's special exhibit of rare and early Macintosh artifacts at the Computer History Museum on Jan 22, 2004 together with a special lecutre "The Macintosh Marketing Story".

Original "Mac at 20" page here at the Digibarn.

Mister Mac pins

Mister Mac
on the logic
Answer: this little guy is Mister Macintosh, a kind of proto- Macintosh logo! This logo was scanned off a prototype circuit board and from some rare pins (thanks Daniel Kottke). See our pages on these pins and Mister Macintosh here.

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