The Retro Tech Museum displays 20th Century technology of various kinds - particularly office and computer technologies. Our sales efforts help pay for our overhead to cover our mission of bridging the technology divide.
Moore's Law tells that the power of a state of the art computer doubles every 18 months. This display shows some of those changes over time.
A computer workshop is required for refurbishing computers. It also allows us to repair your computer, whether it is a current state of the art machine or one that belongs here in our museum.
This display shows the inside of disk drives that have been used since the 1960s. The large 14 inch platters contained only a few thousand characters of information. Today we use USB flash drives smaller than a quarter that contain billions and todays hard drives can hold trillions of characters.
Radio, sewing machines and typewriters were state of the art in the first half of the 20th Century.
Before we had computers or television, there was film and Radio. Home movies were big in the 50s & 60s.
In the 70s Color TV dominated, but there were also other choices for entertainment shown here.
Gaming systems were all the buzz in the 70s. These were small special purpose boxes that played a single game cartridge. One of the most popular games was PacMan.
Here are some early commercial home systems. On the left is Heath which was a build it yourself model. The Commodore and Radio Shack on the right arrived fully assembled.
Home and hobbyist computer enthusiasts need to work at the board level. Using Radio testing equipment like this, people like Jobs and Wozniack were able to build early home systems.
The Apple II was the first major success for Apple. This Apple IIc, typical of the genra can play a good game of chess.
The original IBM PC was intended to be a home systems to fight with Apple for the new home marketplace. But it's low cost and open architecture made it also attractive to the business community.
Microsoft of course was the maker of DOS, the operating system for the IBM PC. But Microsoft was also a maker of applications for both IBM and Apple.
The IBM PC jr was IBM's answer to Apple and other home systems.
Compaq was one of the first successful clone makers, utilizing the first business portable computer. The Compaq portable was also called the luggable as it weighed about 35 pounds.
IBM tried answering the clones by changing the hardware architecture and the PS/1 was born. But this didn't work as the business consumers had too much investment in the old Intel machines and the PS/1 was a failure.
After the Power PC, Apple turned its talents artistically to making beautiful as well as functional computers. Here is an early colorful iMac with pleasing design.
Apple found product niches in education and graphical applications. They also found a partner with Avid a maker of professional Audio/Visual software for Television production. We have a complete working demo system for you to marvel at.