IBM System3, 1970
Designed for small businesses, the System 3 rented for about $1,000 a month or $5,441 in today's dollars (SFr6,467).
Hewlett-Packard 2100A, 1971
This was HP's second-generation of computers. It was designed to be a rugged machine able to withstand high altitudes and modest cold. It weighed 91 pounds (42kg).
Altair 8800b, 1975
The Altair 8800b used an Intel 8080A CPU chip that operated at two Mhz.
Smaky 2, 1975
The Smaky was made at Lausanne's Federal Institute of Technology and later models used its own operating system, called Psos. The machine got its name from a shortened version of "smart keyboard", because the motherboard fit into the same housing as the keyboard.
IMSAI 8080, 1975
IMSAI computers were the first to use an operating system called CP/M commercially. Microsoft's DOS eventually took over as the leading operating system in the early 1980s.
Epsitec Smaky 6 (Switzerland), 1978
A later version of the Smaky models.
An early laptop, the Osborne 1, 1981
It weighed nearly 25 pounds (11.1kg), had a five-inch screen and cost $1,800 in 1981 dollars, about $4,181 today (SFr4,963).
Commodore 64, 1982
The Commodore 64 proved to be one of the most popular computers of the day because of its price, $595, or $1,300 in 2009 dollars (SFr1,545). It sold in retail shops instead of electronics stores, helping to bring computers into homes. It was also a popular console for playing games like International Karate.
Apple IIe, 1983
The Apple II series computer sold for 11 years, making it one of the most popular Apple computers to come out. The first IIe's were noted for their ability to input and display lower-case letters.
Epsitec Smaky 100 (Switzerland), 1984
This later version of the "smart keyboard", or Smaky, computer ran at about eight Mhz and could hold three megabytes of RAM.
Complaining about spotty wifi? What about the time when a computer took up a room?
This content was published on March 13, 2009 - 11:58
During a conference in February in Geneva called Lift, participants could reminisce over the earliest days of computing thanks to the Mémoires Informatiques foundation. Founded in Lausanne in March 2007, the group seeks to safeguard the knowledge of computing pioneers and their programming languages to guarantee obsolete computers will still work years from now. Here's a look at some of those machines.
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