The Mac community is waiting with bated breath for this week's expected Apple tablet announcement, but according to some quantum theorists, Mac communities in nearby parallel universes have been playing with Apple tablets since the Reagan administration.
This past week, Frog Design released pictures of the "Bashful" tablet, which was on the drawing boards in 1983, but never made it to the shipping stage. The Bashful looks like the top half of a PowerBook Duo combined with a keyboard stolen from an Apple IIc; a stylus rounded out the Bashful's user interface.
Some explanation of why this is mind-bending may be useful for those of you who don't remember the 1980s. In 1983, the Apple Lisa cost nearly US$10,000 (somewhere between $20,000 and $40,000 in today's dollars), and the Macintosh and Apple IIgs were still in the future.
The Apple user experience was defined by what we had on the Apple II+ and Apple IIe, where "80 column cards" were an advanced technology which bumped high-resolution graphics from 280 by 192 pixels to 560 by 192 pixels.
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