Must-have apps: TenFourFox

Filed under: Software

If you have an old Macintosh with a PowerPC CPU and you want to browse the modern world wide web, you have only one reasonable choice: 10.4Fx, better known as TenFourFox.

TenFourFox: A fork of Mozilla Firefox ESR 38 for the Power Macintosh and Mac OS X Tiger PowerPC

It’s an acclaimed and heroic port of Firefox written by Power Mac users and maintained by Power Mac users, “still out there keeping your Power Mac relevant in an Intel world”.
As I write this text the current version of TenFourFox incorporates “the latest bug fixes and security improvements plus all the powerful technology underlying Mozilla Firefox 38 ESR“.

But let’s take a step back. (more…)

Wednesday 11 November 2015, 2:00 pm
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1 comment

The Lisa/Macintosh XL, one of the “most unforgettable old Macs”

Filed under: Hardware

This summer I noticed a question on Quora, asking “What are the most unforgettable old Mac computers?”


While most of the answers (predictably) waxed poetic about mainstays such as original or the G4 iMac, the TAM (Twentieth Anniversary Macintosh), the Portable or some odd but cool looking model such as the Macintosh TV, I chose to go against the grain and listed the following choices:

-) Macintosh XL: Lisa born again as a Macintosh and a indespensable development tool in the early years
-) Macintosh SE/30: fast and powerful, but still compact as the first one
-) Macintosh Quadra 900/950: the biggest, heaviest, baddest Mac ever
-) PowerBook Duos: coupled with the DuoDock they were a groundbreaking concept
-) white iBooks/PowerBooks with IBM G3 processors: insanely great battery life for the time

Shrine Of Apple: Lisa Pascal Workshop 3.0

While the speed and power of the SE/30 or Quadras are a well-known fact and many have lauded the virtues of old PowerBooks (I am among those) I think I should expand a bit and offer more context on the first item, i.e. the importance of Lisa/Mac XL during the early years of the Macintosh’s life.

When in January 23 1985 Apple renamed the Lisa 2/10 to Macintosh XL, thanks to the addition of MacWorks XL, a Lisa program that allowed 64K Macintosh ROM emulation, it stressed the Lisa/XL had way more memory and storage space than the early 128K/512K Macs. (more…)

Tuesday 27 October 2015, 4:22 pm
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Any comments?

One year of Stories of Apple on Tumblr

Filed under: News

Back in July last year I announced the birth of a brand new resource for “quotes, memorable images and assorted tidbits from Appleā€™s history”: Stories of Apple on Tumblr.

Stories of Apple on Tumblr - header

One year later, I’m proud to announce that it has gathered close to 7200 followers and amassed more than 600 posts in its archive, which you can peruse, like and retumblr.

Moreso: the posts are all thouroughly and painstakingly tagged by yours truly so you can not only see content about – let’s say – the Lisa, Sir Jonathan Ive or various Apple prototypes, but you can also search for years, such as stuff that was released or happened in 1983, 1997, 2001 or 2007.

Stories of Apple on Tumblr - July 2015

I have loads of quotes, images, graphics, videos, recordings, and plan to keep going for quite a while. I am also working by accretion and will sum up some of the most interesting threads in proper and longish posts here, on the Stories of Apple website.

In the meantime thank you for reading, reblogging, commenting, suggesting, submitting and pointing out mistakes. And if you’re not doing it (yet) follow Stories of Apple on Tumblr!

Wednesday 08 July 2015, 12:00 pm

Any comments?

The Apple I

Filed under: Hardware,People

40 years ago, on July 29th, 1975, Steve Wozniak booted up for the first time the computer he designed and built on his own.


At the beginning of March 1975, in Menlo Park, Gordon French hosted in his garage the first meeting of the Homebrew Computer Club, where the Altair was demoed.

Wozniak participated with his friend Allen Baum and his imagination was struck most of all by Altair’s Intel 8080 microprocessor. Suddenly, he had an insight. (more…)

Tuesday 30 June 2015, 3:14 am
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1 comment

The Jonathan Computer

Filed under: Design,Hardware

In late 1984 the Macintosh’sApple’s market share was just 15% and Steve Jobs, John Sculley and their staff were running various scenarios to gain sales without losing the much needed profit to fund R&D and advertising.
According to designer Tony Guido the question at Apple was:

“What would it take to put the Mac on as many desktops as possible, without licensing, in a way that would convince DOS users to migrate toward the Mac?”

At the same time hardware engineer John Fitch, having just completed work on the IIgs, was worried by the lack of follow-up product for the Apple II. Fitch wanted to design a computer around a new chip, the Motorola 68030, which would be powerful enough for business and high end applications, but could also be offered to home users.

Inspired by the Apple II “open” architecture mindset, Fitch proposed a modular approach.
He designed a simple hardware “backbone” carrying basic operations and I/O on which the user could add a series of “book” modules, carrying hardware for running Apple II, Mac, UNIX and DOS software, plus other modules with disk drives or networking capabilities.


Thus beginners, mid-level and high-end customers could all use the same basic hardware but could configure and enhance their systems over time. (more…)

Wednesday 03 June 2015, 3:00 pm
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