MACHINE OF THE YEAR 1982: The Computer Moves In

The Computer Moves In

By the millions, it is beeping its way into offices, schools and homes

WILL SOMEONE PLEASE TELL ME, the bright red advertisement asks in mock irritation, WHAT A PERSONAL COMPUTER CAN DO? The ad provides not merely an answer, but 100 of them. A personal computer, it says, can send letters at the speed of light, diagnose a sick poodle, custom-tailor an insurance program in minutes, test recipes for beer.

As the Apple Computer advertisement indicates, the enduring American love affairs with the automobile and the television set are now being...

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