The Majestic Birth of Graphical User Interfaces – Xerox Alto and the Alto Trek game (
from to on 14 Mar 2024 23:05

Can you imagine a time before the Graphical User Interface, when you could only operate a computer with abstract-looking text instead of using simple menus, and it was unheard of to use the oh-so-common mouse? A time when computers were harder to learn, and even harder to master? Well then, join us on our splendid trip where we’ll discover one of the very first GUIs in a personal computer, found on the Xerox Alto!

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threaded - newest on 14 Mar 2024 23:24 next collapse

And yet I still spend most of my time in a Linux terminal on 15 Mar 2024 15:45 collapse

Can I imagine? Yeah, I lived it. Even Internet browsers used to be text only. My first modem was <1 kbit/s. (For contrast, the last dial-up modem speeds were 56,000 kbit/s, and today speeds are often 1,000,000 kbit/s or more.)

The mouse came before graphical OSes for me, since games used it but games were executed from the command line MS-DOS. Of course DOS was also capable of using a mouse. I didn’t really use an OS GUI until Windows 3.1, which was mostly a novelty at first. That came out in the early '90s. I didn’t have any exposure to Macs until System 7 in the mid-'90s.

My daily driver these days is a MacBook Pro. We’ve come a long way!