Today in Apple history: Apple’s war with IBM commences

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IBM PC 5150: The IBM Personal Computer
This unassuming IBM Personal Computer started the Apple-versus-PC feud.
Photo: Boffy B/Wikipedia CC

August 12: Today in Apple history: Apple's war with IBM commences August 12, 1981: The launch of the IBM Personal Computer ignites a long-running Apple-versus-PC rivalry.

Secure in the Apple II’s technical superiority over the new PC, Apple welcomes IBM to the personal computing party in the pages of The Wall Street Journal. Things won’t stay positive for long.

Today in Apple history: Macintosh SE gets supersized storage

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The Mac SE FDHD was a mouthful to say -- but what a computer!
The Mac SE FDHD was a mouthful to say -- but what a computer!
Photo: Vetronic's Apple World

August 1: Today in Apple history: Macintosh SE gets supersized storage August 1, 1989: Apple gives the Macintosh SE a storage bump, courtesy of the new SuperDrive. Capable of handling high-density floppy discs, the drive offers an astonishing 1.4MB of storage.

In terms of portable storage, it’s a big step up for most Mac owners. The HD floppy disks compare very favorably to the 400KB Single Side Double Density (SSDD) disks and 800KB Double Side Double Density (DDSD) disks in use at the time.

Today in Apple history: Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman is born

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Kate Winslet (left) plays Joanna Hoffman (right) in Steve Jobs.
Kate Winslet (left) played Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman in Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs biopic.
Photos: Kate Winslet/Apple

July 27: Today in Apple history: Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman birthday July 27, 1955: Joanna Hoffman, who will join the original Macintosh and NeXT teams and become Steve Jobs’ first right-hand woman, is born in Poland.

Six months younger than Jobs, the marketing executive is one of the few people willing and able to stand up to the oftentimes-fierce Apple co-founder during the first part of his career.

Today in Apple history: Windows scores big victory over Mac

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Windows used a number of elements of the Mac UI
Windows used a number of elements of the Mac UI.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

July 25: Today in Apple history: Windows scores big victory over Mac when judge throws out Apple's copyright infringement claims July 25, 1989: Apple suffers a major setback in its copyright-infringement lawsuit against Microsoft for allegedly stealing the Mac’s “look and feel” to create Windows.

Apple sued Microsoft on 189 counts of copyright infringement relating to Windows 2.0.3. The judge overseeing the case throws out 179 of them. This paves the way for Microsoft’s dominance over Apple in the coming decade.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs visits the Soviet Union

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Soviet Apple flag
This was Steve Jobs' one and only trip to the Soviet Union.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

July 4 Today in Apple history July 4, 1985: Steve Jobs visits Moscow for the first time, with the aim of selling Macs to the Russians.

During his two-day trip, Jobs lectures computer science students in the Soviet Union, attends a Fourth of July party at the American embassy, discusses opening a Mac factory in Russia, and reportedly almost runs afoul of the KGB by praising assassinated Marxist revolutionary Leon Trotsky.

Today in Apple history: Bill Gates urges Apple to license Mac OS

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Bill Gates
Bill Gates took this strategy and made himself a multibillionaire.
Photo: Fulvio Obregon

June 25 Today in Apple historyJune 25, 1985: 30-year-old Bill Gates, at the time best known as a Mac developer, sends a memo to Apple CEO John Sculley and Macintosh boss Jean Louis Gassée.

His suggestion? That Apple licenses its Mac operating system and additional technology to other companies. Apple’s management ignores his advice. Five months later, Windows 1.0 is released.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs says Apple is being run by ‘caretakers’

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1984
Steve Jobs thought ditching ad agency Chiat/Day proved that Apple had lost its creative mojo.
Photo: Apple and Chiat/Day

May 27: Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs says Apple is being run by caretakers May 27, 1986: An exiled Steve Jobs takes a shot at Apple after the company ditches Chiat/Day, the ad agency that created the iconic “1984” Macintosh ad.

In a full-page ad published in The Wall Street Journal, Jobs says the move to competing ad agency BBDO shows that “caretakers” rather than “builders” now run Apple. From his perspective, it confirms that Apple has lost its revolutionary spirit.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs attempts a boardroom coup

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Jobs
Sadly for Steve, things didn't work in his favor.
Photo: Esther Dyson/Flickr CC

May 23: Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs attempts a boardroom coup May 23, 1985: Bitter about being ousted from his position running the Macintosh division, Steve Jobs attempts to stage a coup to seize control of Apple from CEO John Sculley.

The 30-year-old Apple co-founder plans to overthrow Sculley while the CEO is away on a business trip in China. Unfortunately for Jobs, he makes a critical mistake when he tries to recruit the support of Apple executive Jean-Louis Gassée, who informs Sculley of the plot.

It’s the beginning of the end for Jobs’ first tenure at Apple.

Today in Apple history: AppleLink Personal Edition is the precursor to AOL

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AppleLink
Do you remember AppleLink?
Photo: Apple Confidential

May 20 Today in Apple historyMay 20, 1988: Apple launches AppleLink Personal Edition, a user-facing online service which lets Apple customers connect using a Mac-style user interface.

Years before Apple got serious about its internet efforts, this was a glimpse of things to come. Unfortunately for Apple, it wasn’t quite the hit many had hoped it would be!