25 Years of Macintosh in 25 Days

The Macintosh officially turns 25 on January 24, 2009, the anniversary of the day Apple announced the original Macintosh to its Board of Directors and to the world- the world of personal computing has never been the same.

This page covers the Macintosh Era. For coverage of Apple from 1977 through 1983, see our Before the Macintosh section.


  • 1984: The First Macs, Dan Knight, Mac History, 2009.01.12. “On January 24, 1984, Apple announced the Macintosh to their Board of Directors and to the world.”
  • 25 years: The Macintosh legacy, Tommy Thomas, Welcome to Macintosh, 01.23. On January 24, 1984, the world said hello to a new kind of computer that reshaped the personal computer industry.
  • The Original Macintosh, Dan Knight, Online Tech Journal, 2001.01.12. An in-depth look at the original Macintosh and how it shaped future Macs.
  • The Story Behind Apple’s 1984 Ad, Tom Hormby, Orchard, 2006.01.27. Although it went on to become the best ad in the history of the SuperBowl, Apple’s board of directors wanted to pull the ad and run something safer.
  • Growing Apple with the Macintosh: The Sculley Years, Tom Hormby, Orchard, 2006.02.22. With the Mac ascendant, Apple grew to become the biggest personal computer maker on the market in 1990.
  • Innovative Macintosh System 1.0, Andrew Conachey, Classic Mac Nostalgia, 2005.12.08. The first Mac OS brought a graphical user interface to the masses, and a lot of it looks familiar to long-time Mac users.
  • The Overpriced Mac in 1984, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2005.01.10. Looking at the personal computing world of 1984 to determine whether the original Mac was overpriced.
  • The Roots of the Mac OS, Trevor Wale, One More Thing, 2007.12.21. Mac OS X has long, deep roots going back through the Classic Mac OS, the Lisa Office System, and work at Xerox PARC.
  • The Mac Is a Personal Computer, not a PC, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2008.08.06. “…the simple fact is that while the Macintosh is a personal computer, the world knows that it is not a PC.”
  • The First Macs: 1984 to 1986, Tom Hormby, Orchard, 2005.05.23. The original Mac, two 512K Macs, the Mac Plus, and competition from the Apple II side.
  • We’ve Come a Long Way Since 1984: Looking Back at Macworld’s Premier Issue, Kev Kitchens, Kitchens Sync, 2008.08.22. In 1984, Apple introduced the first Macintosh computer, and Macworld magazine was soon there to help Mac users explore the new world of computing.
  • MacWrite 1.0: Defining Word Processing for a Graphical User Interface, Andrew Conachey, Classic Mac Nostalgia, 2006.11.15. The Mac’s first word processor introduced a lot of features and norms that show up in today’s word processing software.
  • Software Bundles: What Came with the Mac 128K, 512K, and Plus, Andrew Conachey, Classic Mac Nostalgia, 2006.01.03. A look at the software and system versions that Apple shipped with the original Macintosh, the 512K Fat Mac, the Mac Plus, and the Mac 512ke.
  • Jef Raskin, the Visionary Behind the Mac, Jason Walsh, Apple Before the Mac, 2005.01.19. “I avoided the supposed ‘visionaries’ in the company who could not understand my idea but presented a business case: People would buy a product that they could readily and happily use.”
  • Andy Hertzfeld, Software Wizard, Cortland, 2006.09.08. Andy Hertzfeld, an innovative software engineer, loved the Apple II, helped create the original Mac OS, and cofounded Radius, General Magic, and Radius. Today he programs for Google.
  • Andy Hertzfeld: Mac truly a better way, Tom Hormby, Orchard, 2005.09.13. A key member of the Mac development team talks about the Mac, personal computing, the power of the network, and the future of free software.




  • 1987: The Mac Gains Expansion Slots and Internal Hard Drives, Dan Knight. Apple produced the one-millionth Mac in 1987 and introduced AppleShare, along with the Mac II, which was the first Mac with color.
  • The Legendary Apple Extended Keyboard, Tommy Thomas, Welcome to Macintosh, 2006.10.13. Introduced in 1987, this extended keyboard was well designed and very solidly built. It remains a favorite of long-time Mac users.
  • Remembering HyperCard, Manuel Mejia Jr, Triassic Mac, 2003.08.11. Apple’s easy to use, powerful environment for creating media-rich interactive programs is fading away.
  • The First Expandable Macs: Mac II and SE, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2007.03.02. Until March 2, 1987, Macs were closed boxes with no internal expansion slots, no support for color, and no internal hard drives. The Mac II and SE changed all that.



  • 1989: Mac SE/30, IIcx, IIci, and Portable, Dan Knight. A watershed year saw the introduction of the SE/30, IIcx, IIci, and Macintosh Portable, as well as portrait and 2-page displays.
  • Was the Macintosh IIci the best Mac ever?, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 01.19. Introduced in 1989, the Mac IIci was fast, had integrated video, included 3 expansion slots, and could be upgraded in myriad ways.
  • The misunderstood Macintosh Portable, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2009.01.19. Often ridiculed for its nearly 16 lb. weight, people forget that the Mac Portable wasn’t designed to be a laptop computer.
  • Aggressively Stupid: The Story Behind After Dark, Tommy Thomas, Welcome to Macintosh, 2007.02.09. Interview with Jack Eastman, the man who dreamed up After Dark and its ubiquitous flying toasters.
  • Macintosh Portable, Dan Knight, Second Class Macs, 1998.01.10. At nearly 16 pounds, it was barely portable, but the 10 hour battery was a real plus.
  • Macintosh IIci, Best Buys. The first Mac past the 16 MHz mark, the IIci has onboard color video, three NuBus slots, and could be accelerated with cache cards and CPU upgrades.
  • The Overpriced Mac in 1989, Dan Knight, Mac Musings, 2005.01.12. Were the Macintosh SE/30, IIcx, IIci, and Portable overpriced in comparison to the PCs of 1989?




















Other Resources