Adam Osbourne dead at 64

osborne portable computerSome people have fond memories of their first bike or their first record player; I get that warm nostalgic feeling when I think about our family’s first portable computer. My dad purchased an Osborne 1 when I was only a wee little tike, a big monster of a suitcase box that used some mysterious thing called CP/M to make video games and print words out on its tiny little screen.

It’s funny that some stupid, clunky piece of techno-memorabilia could cause such a torrent of emotions and memories. But you have to admit, it is kind of cute in its antiqueness with a little bubbly screen and extra-spacious keyboard. It makes me wonder, in the day of ATX cases and LCD screens, will kids of this generation share my experience? I’d assume not, but I guess I’m just jealously guarding my unique suitcase-computer.

Maybe Apple has it right: these digital artifacts aren’t just tools, they’re objects that are part of our personal experiences, things we become attached to. I’d much rather bond with a Mac Classic than a vanilla PC. But I guess not everyone is the same.. hell, the second world lasted for quite some time.

Anyway, I’m in mourning today, as Adam Osborne, eccentric engineer and inventor of the portable (luggable) computer passed away at 64.

Yahoo News: Adam Osborne, Portable Computer Pioneer, Dead at 64

11 thoughts on “Adam Osbourne dead at 64

  1. I actually toted that thing on airplanes and it was very heavy. Not what we would call portable today by any means. But I too have fond memories of it and the magic that it could perform.

  2. don’t you mean shoddy? i’ve no idea what you’re actually talking about, but thought i’d mention that wee error.

  3. Dr. Adam Osborne and I considered ourselves casual friends. We were always happy to see each other at computer related events. I am deeply saddened to learn of his untimely passing. Thanks Adam for the wonderful memories. The world would not be at the current junction without you. Rest in peace, dear friend.

  4. You mean, “If only Gary Kildall hadn’t ruined things by playing golf instead of selling his OS to IBM, we might still be playing Munchkins today”, don’t you??

  5. I love Adam Ousbourne i am such a geek and i love to study computers so will you send me information on him and pictures of him.Gotta go cause my glasses need cleaning.SNARKLES!!!

  6. Can you tell me more about Adam Osbourne.
    I am doing a presentation at school and would like to know some of his motivations when making the first portable computer. And also when did he create the first laptop

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