Happy Birthday Windows 1.0

Windows version 1.0, which did not set the world on fire, is now 25 years old this month, and I’d like to share a few remembrances of the OS.First of all, it was useless. Like, seriously useless. But it was strangely interesting at the same time. You had to have a special graphics card to run the thing, and when compared to DOS, it did look better although it was not as attractive as the Mac OS or anything done today including Linux GUI’s. I wonder if there is a machine in existence that still runs it.Steve Ballmer made a hilarious video promoting Windows 1.0 like a used car salesman.

At first, Microsoft called it “Interface Manager.” Later, a marketing guy in the company came up with the name “Windows.” The thing wasn’t originally designed as an OS but as a shell program with a zippy GUI that could manage all of the device drivers through a common API. People forget that by the mid 1980’s device drivers for peripherals were a nightmare. Interface Manager, now Windows, would take care of this problem.

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