Hardware

Gallery: The evolution of the PC

PDP-8

It may only be 44-years old but with its myriad switches and a chassis the size of a cupboard, the PDP-8 seems light years away from the modern PC.

But this is the great granddaddy of today's netbooks and smartphones, it was the first computer to be mass produced and sold more than 50,000 - despite costing a princely $18,000 on its introduction in 1965.

The PDP-8 kicks off The National Museum of Computing's PC Gallery, which opened Friday in London, where the story of the evolution of the modern PC is told using 50 machines that defined personal computing.

Britain plays a key part in this story of how PCs became cheap, user-friendly and infinitely more powerful, and is well represented by machines from the 1980s - the golden age of computer manufacturing in the UK.

Photo credit: Nick Heath/silicon.com

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