10.1. Source Material

So far I've covered commentary about the IBM PC written in retrospect, with a few images of material from the early days. This next section consists of a transcript of a recording made the day the IBM PC was announced. You get to "hear" what we thought was important at the time, what IBM wrote in its marketing material, and more.

IBM PC Announcement 1981

Transcript of Software Arts staff meeting on August 12, 1981, reading and reacting to the material from IBM announcing their new Personal Computer

On August 12, 1981, the day the IBM PC was announced, VisiCalc's developers, Software Arts, held a staff meeting to go over what was happening. Like most of our full staff meetings, it was videotaped with home video equipment so employees who missed it could watch it later. Little did we realize that a segment of this tape would appear as part of PBS's Triumph of the Nerds[] TV documentary 15 years later. PBS people told me that at the time they put the show together it was the only appropriate video they could find from that day. Here's a picture from the tape:

The meeting was in our air-conditioned computer room and I do most of the talking for this part of the meeting. What follows is a transcript I made to commemorate the 20th anniversary. I've put some annotations that should help you understand the transcript better in "Notes About the IBM PC Announcement ...

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