Jean-Louis Gassée on the birth of the Macintosh

Jean-Louis Gassée:

It’s November, 1983; I’m sitting in the auditorium at Apple’s worldwide sales meeting in Honolulu. The house lights dim and “1984” begins. Conceived by ad agency Chiat/Day, directed by Ridley Scott of Blade Runner fame, and destined to be aired nationally only once (during the 1984 Super Bowl).


The lights come halfway up. Steve Jobs’ magical brainchild is lowered from the flies, deus ex Macintosh. Halfway through its descent, the Mac boots up and we hear the newborn’s wail, the now familiar Bong.


Apple’s assembled sales organization was delighted by the Mac’s enchanting presentation, its (almost) never-seen-before user interface. But there was a nervous energy under the surface: Would the Macintosh save Apple from the IBM PC and its clones?

A nostalgic look back, with lots of interesting links and some images that will really take you back. Especially that one of young Steve Jobs giving IBM the finger.