Since Apple Computer introduced the Macintosh microcomputer in 1983, it has remained popular with many people who were impressed with its “user-friendly” graphic interface. In contrast to pre-Windows IBM PCs, the Macintosh was not command-oriented; in other words, users worked with icons, menus and the mouse to issue commands instead of having to memorize many DOS commands and type them in on the computer. However, the Macintosh was not- and still is not- used in business as much as the IBM and IBM clones.
Then, with the introduction in 1985 of Adobe’s PostScript page description language for the Mac, desktop publishing was essential invented. Thus the Macintosh line of microcomputers became essential to many types of people in publishing, design, illustration, and typesetting. Although desktop publishing programs-such as Quark Xpress and PageMaker- are now available for the IBM, the high-end Quadra and the Power Mac are still preferred by many people in desktop publishing and related areas.
Basically, the Mac can do anything the IBM can do. And many people still insist it’s easier to use than IBM microcomputers-even those with Windows. It’s getting easier to swap files between the two systems-with extra, inexpensive software all Macs can accept diskettes formatted on an IBM PC. (Macs with system 7 operating system software include this special software.) Newer Macs have a diskette drive called a Superdrive, which can handle diskettes formatted on an MS-DOS machine. The new Power Mac has two kinds of chips to enable the computer to support both Mac- and PC-based programs; and, as with all Macs, networking capability is built in. However, this system is still relatively expensive.