My last 22 years with Apple — a look back to all Macs I have ever owned.

Jürgen Alker
5 min readApr 4, 2016

Apple turned 40 last week. This is a good time to look back into my personal history with Apple as I never used anything else (leaving the Commodore 64 that I used for gaming when I was a kid aside).

The Apple II — Image: Wikipedia

The first time I ever touched an Apple was in school in 1985. It was an Apple II; I think it was an Apple ][e released in 1983. After school, we had programming lessons on it. Does anyone remember Pascal? That’s what we learned.

I dropped out of school in 1993 and always dreamt of a Mac. I still had the idea of becoming a designer. A Mac was the designer’s first and probably only choice. The first Mac I ever bought was in 1994: a PowerPC 6100. The PowerPC line launched in 1994 was the first to be powered by the brand-new PowerPC processor. It came with 8MB RAM and a 160MB hard drive.

Power Macintosh 6100 — Image: Shrine of Apple

Two years later, I moved on to a Performa 5260, an all-in-one Mac with a 14" screen. It still had 8 MB RAM but a lot more hard drive space with 800MB. It was running Apple OS 7.

Performa 5260 — Image: Macrumors

In mid-1997, I switched back to a standalone Mac: a Power Macintosh 8600, which retailed for $2.700. A lot of money back then.

Power Macintosh 8600 — Image: Macintoshuser

In 1999, I finally switched to a laptop: the PowerBook G3, “Wallstreet.” The first PowerBook G3 launched in November 1997 and “Wallstreet” was an update to the PowerBook G3 in March 1998. The PowerBook G3 was available with a 12", 13.3", and a 14.1" screen. I think I had the 12", or maybe the 13.3". It had two bays that stored the CD/DVD drive and the battery. It was possible to swap batteries or to replace the CD/DVD drive with a second battery. This version of the PowerBook G3 was the last Apple computer ever to bear the rainbow-colored Apple logo.

Macintosh Powerbook G3 — Image: Wikipedia

I kept the PowerMac G3 for a while then replaced it three years later with a PowerBook G4 in 2002. The PowerBook G4 was a revolution and was first presented in January 2001. It was much lighter than the PowerBook G3: 3.4 kg compared to now only 2.5 kg. And of course, it was much thinner: 18mm! It was the first to be housed in a titanium case, with a 15.2" screen. The PowerPC processor was running at either 400 or 500 MHz. I bought the revision that ran with 667 MHz and had 256 MB of RAM and a 30 GB hard drive. This machine was a lot of fun to use. And I used it for years.

Macintosh PowerBook G4 — Image: Old Mac

In 2006, I went back to a smaller screen and a black laptop. It was the first MacBook. The MacBook replaced the iBook series and 12" PowerBook series as part of the Apple-Intel transition from PowerPC. I bought the first revision of the MacBook at the end of 2006 that came with 2.0 GHz and an Intel Core 2 Duo. I went for 512 MB of memory and an 80GB hard drive. It already ran with OS X 10.7. It was not much lighter than the PowerMac G4 (2.4 kg), but it was much more powerful.

MacBook — Image: Laptopmag

In 2008, I tried a 15" laptop again: the MacBook Pro. The original 15" MacBook Pro was announced on January 10, 2006, by Steve Jobs at the Macworld Conference & Expo. The first design was largely a carryover from the PowerBook G4 but used Intel Core CPUs instead of PowerPC G4 chips. In 2008, Apple announced a new 15" MacBook Pro featuring a “precision aluminum unibody enclosure”. The ports were sitting on the left side of the case, and the optical disc drive had moved from the front to the right side. It still had a user-removable battery and came with a Mini DisplayPort. I had a version with a 2.4 GHz Intel Mobile Core 2 Duo processor, 2 GB of RAM, and a 250-GB hard drive.

MacBook Pro Late 2008 – Image: Apple History

I stayed with the 15" for three years, just to go back to a 13" MacBook in 2011. I went with the Intel Core i7 version with 2.8GHz.

At the end of 2013, Apple launched the MacBook Pro 13" with retina display; the outside stayed pretty much the same. It is the machine I am still working on today.

MacBook Pro Late 2013 — Image: Apple History

I am desperately hoping for new MacBooks this summer to continue my long-lasting relationship with Apple.

2016 MacBook Pro Concept (existing MacBook Pro in the back) — Image: Martin Hajek

Thank you for 23 marvelous years, Apple. You helped to bring a lot of ideas to life! Looking forward to the future …

P.S.: During the last few years, I have also had a few iPods, almost all iPhones and iPads, a few AirPort stations, Apple TVs, and Time Machines …

What´s your Apple hardware history? Comment below or get in touch via Twitter @JuergenAlker.

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Jürgen Alker

Building stuff around NFTs and Metaverse. Consultant and Head of NFT Studio @ Highsnobiety