Adam Osborne, 1939-2003
March 26, 2003 10:57 AM   Subscribe

Adam Osborne could arguably be called one of the fathers of the laptop, having introduced the first commercially successful portable computer, the Osborne 1. Sadly, he passed away late yesterday. It's interesting to consider that those of us who use laptops day-to-day in our jobs owe a gratitude to one of the less-well-known pioneers of the tech industry.
posted by PeteyStock (5 comments total)
PeteyStock, this page has some 1983 ads for Osborne computers. The main page is kinda cool too.
posted by madamjujujive at 1:21 PM on March 26, 2003

I remember buying Osborne computers (not laptops) years ago, before the company went broke and was then taken over by Gateway. They were selling huge quantities of machines here in Australia for several years, but their business model had some fatal flaws in it, despite being the only company at the time targeting business customers and their needs without adding huge margins to allow for service that most business customers don't need. It was a shame to see them die and a bigger shame to hear that the founder has cashed in his chips, so to speak.
posted by dg at 2:10 PM on March 26, 2003

My husband, the computer fanatic, has one of these things. A friend was moving and didn't want it, and so we inherited the big clunky thing. Glad to read it's held in such regard, as it's just taking up space to me.
posted by GaelFC at 4:01 PM on March 26, 2003

What nostalgia! My first computer, in the early 80's was an Osborne 1. I came home from school and my sister had Software Toolworks' Original Adventure running (on an external monitor, thank God, not that 5" thing)... And then, of course, was the revolutionary day when we got the 300bps modem...

We had thought about the IBM PC, but, you know, most of the software out there was in CP/M... what would you do with an IBM PC?
posted by Zurishaddai at 8:27 PM on March 26, 2003

The $10,000 Osborne in my friend's father's office was my first inkling that a computer could be used for anything more than games. Previous to that my life was all Atari and Sinclair. Sad to hear he has died.
posted by IndigoSkye at 9:14 PM on March 26, 2003

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