30 years of the IBM PC: Back when we had to be convinced to buy a computer

In the 1980s, when the personal computer was still mostly a novelty, we had to be convinced to buy a computer. IBM used an icon personality to make the case for its PC.

Some 30 years ago, when the concept of the personal computer was more of a luxury than a necessity, the general public had to be convinced that they needed to buy a PC. As other manufacturers like AT&T started selling IBM-clones, the marketing team at IBM decided to capture our attention with the iconic image of Charlie Chaplin's lovable tramp.

To this day, I don't know why that iconic image was chosen -- I never got the connection. I can only assume IBM wanted to make us feel more comfortable with this strange new appliance. However, with that being said, I do still remember seeing them.

What early PC commercials do you remember?

By Mark Kaelin

Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.