updated 05:00 pm EST, Fri January 23, 2009
25 years of Mac
January 24th will mark the 25th anniversary of the Macintosh, Apple's flagship product. The computer was the first commercially successful system to include a mouse and a graphical interface, and is widely seen as having made personal computers accessible to the general public, rather than just people with technical expertise. Apple would continue to expand the technology over the coming years, and adopt a number of different names, such as Performa, PowerBook, iMac and Mac Pro.
Computerworld draws attention to what it calls the top 10 Macs of all time; aside from the original, the PowerBook 100 series is noted for creating a truly portable Mac, and originating the concepts of palm rests and centrally-placed trackballs in notebooks. The iMac helped revive Apple as a company, while the MacBook Air is noted for introducing aluminum unibody designs to notebooks. The iPhone and iPod touch are included in the list despite being handhelds, as a result of scaling down Mac OS X.
Apple is also noted to have made considerable mistakes though, such as the Macintosh IIvi and IIvx, which were actually slower than a Mac released three years earlier. The Power Macintosh 4400 is described as being cheap, loud and unstable, while Apple price excesses may have peaked with the Twentieth Anniversary Mac, which was initially priced at $5,500 more than the similarly-equipped Power Macintosh 5500. Other derided Mac products include the Pippin, the Macintosh TV and the infamous "hockey puck" mouse for the original iMac.