August 12 2006

25 Years Ago Today, Geekiness Went Wild

I had no clue that today was the 25th anniversary of the PC until a few minutes ago. I went over to Yahoo to look something up and was greeted by this lovely little article. On August 12th, 1981, IBM introduced the IBM 5150. It wasn’t the first PC, that’s credited to the Apple II, but it was the first that really applied to business productivity.

Let’s look at some of the stats on this beast:


IBM 5150

Today’s Computers



(approx 1,048,576kb)

Disk Drives

160kb floppy drives x2

500gb hard drive
(approx 1,638,400 160kb discs)


17 lbs, 11.5″ monochrome

11.68 lbs, 17″ flat panel,
capable of over 16 million colors


6 lbs

About 2 lbs

Seems insane now doesn’t it? As the same article so wisely points out though, how silly will our computers of today look in 25 years? A 30tb hard drive? (a 500gb hard drive is still a big deal, so 30tb would be 60 times larger) A 32-core CPU? (remember, 2-core CPUs just started coming out) The computers of today will seem so “quaint”, almost pre-historic.

For fun, also check out this article about the 25 most important milestones in personal computing.

share tweet share

Science & Technology