Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
|Print List Price:||£14.99|
Save £10.00 (67%)
When Computing Got Personal: A history of the desktop computer Kindle Edition
Kindle Daily Deals: Books from 99p
Sign-up to the Kindle Daily Deal email newsletter to discover daily deals from 99p.
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
If you were there then it’s a real trip down memory lane; if you weren’t, it’s an eye-opener to see just how ‘Wild West’ the early microcomputer industry really was. Some illustrations would add to it, but the quality of the material makes it an excellent read nevertheless.
All that said, I found this a fascinating, well-informed and insightful book and well worth reading.
Nicholson tells the story at just the right level, bringing in all the key players and technologies and giving a real in-depth feel to his discussion of the technology, business and politics of the many decisions that left us with the personal computing landscape we have today. From the rise of Microsoft to Apple teetering on the knife-edge of disappearance before it found its way with a new generation of machines, if you are interested in computing this is an excellent account. I've read all the personality-based books on the early developments, that focus almost entirely on the likes of Gates and Jobs, but this achieves a much better balance between the people and the details of the technology (as long as you are techie-minded).
The only thing I really wasn't entirely happy with was the ending. Nicholson decided not to follow personal computing into the laptop/tablet/smartphone era. There's no mention, for instance, of Chrome and only passing references to iPhones and iPads. I think that's a shame, because it's still part of the same revolution, but I can understand him wanting to stick to the very specific rise of the desktop computer. Even so, the actual last few pages end very suddenly without a nice tie-up.Read more ›
Wisely, Nicholson avoids this trap, concentrating instead on the three decades from the early 1970s in which PCs moved from a pipedream to being centre-stage in everyday life and work.
Nicholson is a journalist and this book is proper journalism. The story is big enough not to need sensationalism and is presented here as it happened, in a clear and breezy style with plenty of detail and a welcome lack of guess-work, navel-gazing or theorising.
To be clear, ‘When Computing Got Personal’ is about the PC business – the complex and evolving relationships between IBM, Microsoft and Apple is a constant theme, with supporting roles played by the usual suspects. It’s a story I thought I knew pretty well, but Nicholson’s depth, breadth and perspective provided plenty of food for thought and kept me engaged at all times.
This is a great read for anyone sitting at a desktop computer, wondering how it got to be what it is. You’ll need a certain familiarity with IT to keep up, but in return you’ll get a hold on one of the most important histories of the past fifty years.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm just a novice & some of it is above me, but I love the stories of the early days of PC's , how different it could have been if Xerox had realised just what they had created,... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Mr. Charles P. Milton
An excellent book. Approaches the subject chronologically and even mentions some old favourites like the Sinclair ZX81 and Spectrum!Published 11 months ago by G A ALDER
A great read with plenty of anecdote and interest. Reminds you how it is possible to find opportunity when a new market is developing.Published on 1 Jan. 2015 by G. D. Kendall
This is a book about business, about strategic marketing, and about technology. Many business books have isolated case studies that happen over maybe 5 years, but what we see here... Read morePublished on 6 Nov. 2014 by Doug Miles
This really brought back some memories. The book talks a lot about the computers I started my IT career on! Read morePublished on 11 Aug. 2014 by Zitman
A fascinating insight into the history of the personal computer. How did Steve Jobs and Bill Gates create Apple & Microsoft? Who "borrowed" what idea from whom? Read morePublished on 13 Jun. 2014 by Mr. T. P. Brading