Apple Lisa OS Will Be Publicly Released in 2018

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Next year, the Computer History Museum will release the Apple Lisa OS for free, as an open source project. The Lisa was Apple’s first computer with a graphical user interface, released almost 35 years ago.

Apple Lisa

However, the Lisa was a flop, selling only 10,000 units on an R&D investment of US$150 million. The Lisa caused a fight between Steve Jobs and then-CEO John Sculley, which caused Steve to leave Apple.

Image of the Apple Lisa computer.

At the time, the Lisa was pretty cutting-edge. Not only did it have a graphical user interface, but it also introduced the mouse as an input tool. But it was an expensive machine, costing US$10,000 in 1983, which is the equivalent of US$24,000 today.

5 Comments Add a comment

  1. furbies

    But it was an expensive machine, costing US$10,000 in 1983, which is the equivalent of US$24,000 today.

    Thats’s iMac Pro money…… Ouch !

  2. PSMacintosh

    We had one in the office (Mortgage Business), but it was dedicated to another person’s work……so I, even though co-owner, was banging out hours on the Apple II machines. Until two Macs arrived!
    My first “personal” machine was a Mac 512K enhanced and a whooping 10 MB external Hard Drive (for a total of $5000…..ouch!). (Still have it!!!!)

  3. John Kheit

    I wonder if they will release the initial xenix based version that actually had multitasking, or the follow up later versions that were more limited.

  4. geoduck

    Very happy to hear this BUT it will need a way to run on 21st century systems. Either ported over or run under an emulator or something

  5. Manqueman

    Started work at a small law firm in August 85. Their system was a Lisa and a Mac — insufficient memory between the two, as I recollect.

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