Sunday, July 31, 2011

Evolution of personal computing in one simple picture.

An interesting picture (borrowed somewhere on the web) showing Apple form factor evolution from 1976 to 2007 (click to enlarge).

Since I'm interested in functional, rather than form factor transitions, I can see two major shifts.

The first one, from a command-line general purpose calculator in approximately 1980 (Apple III) to a document- or file-processing machine in 1983 (Apple IIe). Note that the two-dimensional nature of the document required a mouse.

The second one, from a two-dimensional document processor/manager to a content stream device in 2007 with iPhone. Of course, it's impossible to show a mouse replacement - the new zoom-pan interface suitable for interacting with streams.

What's not visible on this picture? Wireless network! A key element in the transition between phase 1 and 2.

tags: system, evolution, payload, tool, interface, 10x, mobile, distribution, apple, information, computers, function

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