We [Digital Equipment Corporation] could have come out with a personal computer in January 1975. If we had taken that prototype, most of which was proven stuff, the PDP-8 A could have been developed and put in production in that seven- or eight-month period.
–David Ahl, former DEC employee and founder of pioneer computer magazine Creative Computing
By 1970, there existed two distinct kinds of computers and two kinds of companies selling them.
The room-sized mainframe computers were built by IBM, CDC, Honeywell, and the other dwarfs. These machines were designed by an entire generation of engineers, cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, and were often custom-built one at a time.
Then you had the minicomputers built by such companies ...