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on at the time. IBM and several others are introducing similar technology now some five years later, but the hardware of today is three generations beyond what I was using then. It is also informative to note that the extra 16MB SIMM I installed in that machine cost just over $1,200 and that same set of chips sells for $39 today. But on the other hand, the voice activated software came as part of the system at no cost and voice software of today, starts at about $175 and climbs rapidly upward from there.

It is not necessarily by design, that software is constantly being renewed and revised. The process of creating present day software relates directly to the increased capabilities of a collective developmental process. Each new step forward is based upon the working principles of the stuff we did yesterday, or last week. A few days ago I was going over some software with a prospective client and pulled out some projects that were four years old. In my memory, I was pretty proud of that work and felt they would stand the test of time, but I was embarrassed to see them and notice how far I had come since their creation. The challenge continues, each innovation, each clever routine, each simple presentation style, move forward like a glacier, completely unrelenting. The added power of modern processors and massively increased memory capabilities, have left all of us standing in what seems like a very powerful wind tunnel, one of our own making, for the hardware development is directly propelled forward by the demands of the software creator and the hardware consumer.
Bill Atkinson
credited with designing elements
of GUI interface

Bill Atkinson, a dedicated bird watcher, was a dedicated software programmer in the late seventies and early eighties and his artistic talent fashioned some routines that created software for a market that did not even exist. But within a couple of years hardware was fashioned to meet the demand for this nonexistent market and in 1984 the laser writer print put Bill's software on the printed page. Desktop publishing was much more then managing words, as Bill took it to another level with fonts, graphics and images. The first computers handled numerical computation, then the same concepts were applied to language, thus creating word processing and people like Bill Atkinson created desktop publishing.
(GUI stands for Graphical User Interface)

Overwhelming forces exist that fling technology forward far beyond economic sensibility. The first QuickTime movie I saw on a computer screen was a full four by four centimetre flicking thing and I was told this would change the world.