You can divide Mac history in a bunch of different ways. But
perhaps the clearest line of demarcation is the mid-1998 release
of the original iMac.
Great piece on a great Mac. Snell patterned his 20 Macs for 2020 project on Joe Posnanski’s Baseball 100. Like Posnanski’s list, there was a lot of room for a lot of debate most of the way down the list. But when it got to the end, not so much. There are a lot of Macs that could have made the list; there are only three or four that could credibly hold the top spot. The original iMac is one.
One thing that’s interesting about the original iMac is that its design didn’t have much staying power. CRTs were on the way out already in 1998, and the whole translucent plastic thing was a fad. But it was a great fad. And the spirit of the original iMac’s design, if not its specifics, set the tone for all of Apple’s successes to follow: computers should be fun and useful, beautiful and elegant, and eschew unnecessary complexity.