A 34-year-old Apple computer is set to sell for £30,000 at auction

A 34-year-old Apple computer is set to sell for upwards of £30,000 when it goes under the hammer next month. The 1983 Apple Lisa-1 computer is being auctioned on November 11 in Cologne, Germany.

The brainchild of Steve Jobs, the Lisa-1 was the first computer to include a mouse as well as overlapping windows, pull-down menus and the recycling bin. With a 5MHZ processor and one megabyte of RAM, the Lisa-1 has always come with a hefty price tag – initially costing $10,000 in 1983. Nasa was the biggest user of the Lisa-1 during the 80s and there are now only between 30 and 100 left worldwide.

Steve Jobs allegedly got the idea of the mouse and icons after seeing a prototype of a similar Xerox computer during a visit to its base in the Silicone Valley. Xerox never put theirs into production unlike Apple, who sold 100,000 Lisa-1s. Apple said the name Lisa stood for Local Integrated System Architecture but Jobs’ later revealed he named it after his first daughter Lisa who was born in 1978.

Despite over 100,000 Lisa-1’s being sold, most of them were destroyed after being replaced by the Lisa-2. The one now for auction belongs to a German university professor who was given it as a retirement present.

A spokesman for the auctioneers said: “The Lisa-1 is extremely rare. It is significant in being the first computer to include many of the features we still use today; overlapping windows, pull-down menus, drag and drop and the recycle bin. As such, it was truly ahead of its time.”

He added: “With a 5MB Apple Profile hard disc, Lisa-1 was state-of-the-art at the time of her production, but cannot compete with today’s Mac or iPad in terms of memory and performance. This one comes in top shape, both visually and technically. It is fully functional except for one of the Twiggy disc drives. Lisa boots from the external 5MB hard disk into LOS 1.0 (Lisa Office System 1.0- which was the first commercial, graphical operating system).”

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