Newsletter Issue #592: Apple’s Final Solution for People Who Hate PCs

April 4th, 2011

Let me tell you that I have always lusted after great technology. I suppose my addiction began in the days before personal computers became commonplace, when I bought an electric typewriter with rudimentary word processing capabilities. What that meant was a storage card that would record a limited number of characters, offering a barely capable method of actually editing your document before committing it to paper.

During the 1980s, I had taken a hiatus from my writing and broadcasting careers to work in the prepress industry. I spent hours laboring over keyboard terminals that hooked in to a large phototypesetting system. While not as exciting as the entertainment industry, I was assured of a regular, predictable paycheck. My wife was also pleased that she could prepare a household budget with a reasonable degree of confidence that we’d be able to actually meet our financial obligations.

When the Apple Macintosh arrived in 1984, my bosses at the prepress agency examined the possibilities closely. As one of the main production people, I was charged with keeping tabs on the new arrival to examine its potential. When PageMaker, the famous desktop publishing application, arrived, along with the Apple LaserWriter featuring Adobe’s PostScript page description language, we were prepared to make the leap.

Yes, people still existed in the command line in those days. The idea of pointing and clicking on pretty icons and buttons seemed, well, childish. People told me that you can’t get real work done on Macs, or any other PC with a graphical user interface. Well, at least until Microsoft cribbed the basics of the Mac OS, and begat Windows.

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