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Re: Ventura



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Richard Minsky wrote:

> The Xerox GEM interface that it uses was the basis for both the MAC
> and Windows operating systems.

I don't think Xerox had anything to do with GEM, which was part of the CPM
operating system, and used by Ventura prior to the program having been sold
to Xerox and converted to Windows.

I'd really be interested in seeing some historical thoughts on the
development of the graphical user interface (GUI). It's not exactly bookart,
but maybe someone here knows more about it than I do.

From what I recall, the very early development of the GUI began as an
attempt to humanize computing so that any cook or baker could get a missile
launched no matter what might have happened to he rest of the unit.

The mouse was invented (or was there prior development elsewhere?) at
Xerox's PARC for similar reasons. In the late '70s, Xerox tried to market an
executive computer and was astounded at the lack of sales. They did a study
and found that executives refused to use keyboards, because a keyboard was a
low-status device used by secretaries and bookkeepers. This led to the mouse
and the GUI, which an Apple engineer saw in a tour of PARC and brought to
the attention of Steve Jobs.

I don't think the mouse was the first pointing device, as I saw a digitizing
stylus when I visited the New York office of Genigraphics (a General
Electric company that was probably the first computer-generated slide
producer) in 1980. They also had a vast library of icons and symbols, which
they told me came out of the military division of General Electric.

I am also under the impression that the GUI did not begin with Xerox,
either. When Apple sued Microsoft for copyright infringement, it came out
that Hewlett-Packard had developed an earlier GUI, and Apple therefore did
not invent the concept. I know that X-Windows (the UNIX GUI) was an early
contender, too, but I'm not sure exactly when development began.


--

JULES SIEGEL Apdo 1764 Cancun Q. Roo 77501
http://www.cafecancun.com

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