Skip to comments.The 30th Anniversary of Osborne Computer
Posted on 04/02/2011 6:34:03 AM PDT by Clint Williams
"This Sunday is the thirtieth anniversary of the announcement of the Osborne 1 the first mass-produced mobile computer. For years, Osborne has been most famous for its failure, traditionally blamed on the company having preannounced new products before they were available. But that's not the whole story and Adam Osborne, its founder, was a fascinating figure who deserves to be remembered."
Dear lord I am getting old....
Fond memories. It still looks good.
I remember that complaints about the small screen were rejected with the retort that the type was no smaller than the Wall Street Journal.
I lusted after one of those. I never got it. It left me emotionally scarred, unable to get pleasure from any computer.
“I remember that complaints about the small screen were rejected with the retort that the type was no smaller than the Wall Street Journal.”
The bigger problem was its 4KB of memory: that’s right, 4 KILObytes. You had to insert a floppy disk to write stuff too. We had one of these and I’m amazed what documents and spreadsheets we produced on a machine with such limitations. Compared to what came later, they were ridiculously expensive and extremely primitive. Nevertheless, they were one of the first out of the gate and for that they deserve a lot of credit.
64kB worth of memory for $4300 US in real terms. What a bargin! ;)
I had one of the first Lisa Systems, forerunner of the MAC, from Apple.
It was a great machine that could do a lot of things. I think it had 4mb of memory that was later upgraded to 8mb.
It was expensive, $10,000 brand new.
My Dad had it in storage and gave it to me, I had all the orginal software and manuals. Ended up selling it on E-Bay to a collector. It still worked.
I got the first blue one at the local computer store. Added a Smith-Corona TP-1 daisywheel printer that took 2.5 minutes per double spaced page. A complete joke by today’s standards but at the time I felt like I had died and gone to heaven.
I’ve got an early Apple down in the basement ....
Started with 8086’s - And was happy to “move up” to a 286. Back when the “test” of compatibility was “Can it play Flight Simulator? Can it run Lotus 1-2-3?”
Damn, I remember it like yesterday.
Just think it was last century
My brother in-law had one, I remember being so envious. I wondered how he ever talked my sister into letting him buy it.
Ended up selling it on E-Bay to a collector.
I just checked Ebay and there’s a vintage Osborne now going for $199, “as is.” Apparently, it powers on, but seller who found it at a garage sale can’t guarantee it actually works. I think I’ll drag mine out of the attic and give it a go. I’m amazed what collectors are willing to pay for stuff. I don’t know what you got for your Lisa, but it probably wasn’t $10K! :-)
Al, I can always count on you to make me feel better - not!!!!!
Oh, man. Did I covet the Osborne. More than Farrah Fawcett.
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