Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Inside the first issue of Macworld

Having a whole new magazine devoted to the Mac was pretty cool back in 1984. You've seen the cover of the first issue, right?

The first issue of Macworld appeared on the same day as the Mac's introduction, which meant a few interesting points:
  • Lots of things were very new that day and worthy of coverage, including the Mac itself and all its software, graphical user interfaces, and even the mouse.
  • Although there was plenty of Apple news to cover, there wasn't much from third parties. The most prominent support came from Microsoft, as you can see in this ad.
  • To get this issue out at the same time as the Mac, Apple obviously cooperated with the publisher and gave them plenty of access while the Mac was still secret. Needless to say, that doesn't happen anymore.
So what's inside? Here's the table of contents:


It's a pretty good assortment of articles about using the Mac, a nice set of brief interviews with team members, a long conversation with Bill Gates, and lots of great images that showed off the Mac's graphical powers. There are even a couple of pieces about programming. Here's a sample of some of the articles:
Remember, everything was new, so people had to be shown around the desktop.


Who remembers Desk Accessories? (Kids, ask your parents.)

Possibly the most soulful photo of Bill Gates ever (shot by the great Ed Kashi).
This article introduced users to the mouse and taught them good mouse hygiene (picture at lower right).


Here's an ad for Dave Winer's ThinkTank, which came out early in the Mac's life.

Examples of illustrations created with MacPaint, comparing screen vs. printer pixels.
Susan Kare's famous illustration.

These products are not pictured because they didn't exist. How many of them ever shipped I can't say. Apple Fritter Modem???

Maybe the most amazing fact of all is that Macworld is still alive and well after nearly 30 years.