A newly minted college graduate, I walked into the work world in June 1982.

I remember someone mentioning that the company's first photocopier had been rolled in just before me.

"Ever seen these?" asked Sheree Reinbach, the chief administrator, showing me a box of carbon sets.

"Not really," I said. "I've heard about them." They were inky pages, to be placed between pieces of paper. The entire sandwich (paper-carbon-paper) would be rolled into a typewriter. Then, striking the keys, the typist would create an original and a carbon copy.

Huh. I guess that's where the phrase "carbon copy" comes from.

I was the new monkey, so I was pushed into all the new technology. Strange ASCII terminal-to-terminal communications with a fellow at ARKLA in Arkansas. The photocopier. The fax machine, which operated with a roller, a needle and a phone cradle. (Don't ask.)

Then Came Macintosh
Actually, first came Apple Lisa. Before Macintosh, Steve Jobs introduced the Lisa. It was a toaster oven, masquerading as a desktop computer — when the phrase "desktop computer" meant absolutely nothing.

It was plopped in front of me and I was the geeky guy who got to use it. Together, we bumbled along on 512K of memory. It would crash every day, requiring a complete rebuilding of the hard disk. Sound worthless? It was so elegant and beautiful that it was worth every crash.

Then came Macintosh. Here's Steve Jobs, introducing Mac, in what might be the finest new product introduction ever.

Of course, the Orwellian 1984 Super Bowl advertisement is a legend. The board of directors of Apple Computer met in emergency session to authorize the million-dollar media buy. Ridley Scott, the now legendary director, shot the commercial in various lengths, because the media buy was so uncertain. The spot ran only once — but was replayed hundreds of time on news broadcasts.


Remember kids, this was 25 years ago. In the world of carbon sets, this was huge. Scalable fonts, drawing,…WYSIWYG.

Happy birthday, Mac, my old friend.