In early February Tara McGinley ran a really wonderful post on DM with the title “Photos of Women and Giant-Ass Mainframe Computers from the 1960s”—I don’t know if the people at Retrospace were paying attention, but in any case a couple weeks later they ran a pretty rad gallery called “Women at Computers,” which focused on the go-go years of 1979 to 1991.
This is the era in which most of the Michael Fassbender movie Steve Jobs takes place, but you won’t see a single Apple product anywhere in this gallery—in fact, nothing could make Jobs’ case of the importance of his company’s success in that movie better than the clunky DOS-munchers on display here. The big boxy models pictured here in the gray casings are all Radio Shack products—in the early 1980s their signature product was called the TRS-80. Most of the rest are from Xerox, which famously pissed away mountains of valuable interface research in the early 1970s.
For an amusing history of the era in which most of these things were manufactured, you can’t go wrong with Robert X. Cringely’s Accidental Empires.
Added bonus: some of the earliest documented examples of mansplaining in the tech world!
Previously on Dangerous Minds:
Photos of women and giant-ass mainframe computers from the 1960s
Behold Apple’s hilariously AWFUL fashion line of 1986