The sketchbook holding the GUI design of early Macs

I remember my early days of computing: There has been a lot of command line stuff going on (and QBASIC programming). Then came Windows 3.1 et al. on our home computer and Macs at school. Later, at university with Unix there has been more command line action again. Nevertheless, computing has clearly become more graphical (a bit more recently also haptic) and much less textual.

When the Mac was being developed, artist Susan Kare was one of the early hires of the team, her first assignment being font design for Mac OS. She came up with the first proportionally spaced (rather than monospaced/typewriter) digital font for the Mac. Later she assumed the task of designing visual GUI elements for Mac OS, using a $ 2.50 graphing book. Head over to PLoS for the full story (and numerous sketches) about how some of the iconic elements of the Mac GUI came into being (and also which sketches didn’t make the cut).


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