Feeds

Microsoft and Apple: 25 years of couples therapy

Saved by a giant head

High performance access to file storage

Macworld Expo Microsoft wants you to know that it's not just the Mac that's holding a 25th birthday party: 2009 marks the 25th year that Redmond has developed software for Apple's quarter-centarian computer.

The Apple/Microsoft relationship has had its rocky moments, to say the least. But the fact remains that Microsoft has consistently been at the top of the heap among Mac-productivity software publishers since the company released Word 1.0 for Mac in 1984.

In the Beginning, There Was Word

Although it was Microsoft's first productivity app for the Mac, Word didn't originate at Microsoft. It's earliest ancestor was Bravo, arguably the first WYSI(sorta)WYG word processor, developed at Xerox PARC in 1974.

Seven years later, Microsoft hired Charles Simonyi, one of Bravo's lead developers, to head-up work on Word's most-direct progenitor, Multi-Tool Word, which was released in the spring of 1983 for Xenix, Microsoft's sole foray into the world of Unix.

In 1984, Multi-Tool Word was ported to the Apple's new Mac, and Microsoft has been publishing productivity software for the Mac ever since.

For its next trick, Microsoft released Excel 1.0 in 1985. Then it shipped PowerPoint 1.0 in 1987, which remained a Mac-only app until 1990.

Although obviously influenced by previous spreadsheets such as VisiCalc, Lotus 1-2-3, and Microsoft's own MultiPlan, Excel was developed inside Microsoft. After a brief vaporware scare from Lotus Jazz, Excel settled into its role as the Mac's go-to spreadsheet.

PowerPoint was developed by Forethought of Sunnyvale, California, just up the road from Apple's Cupertino home. Originally called Presenter, that name was changed by Forethought to PowerPoint when trademark problems surfaced.

Forethought and PowerPoint were bought by Microsoft in 1987, and in 1989 Microsoft bundled its three Mac apps together in the first version of Office for Mac: Word 4.0, Excel 2.20, and PowerPoint 2.01.

High performance access to file storage

Next page: Bumps in the Road

More from The Register

next story
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Nvidia gamers hit trifecta with driver, optimizer, and mobile upgrades
Li'l Shield moves up to Android 4.4.2 KitKat, GameStream comes to notebooks
Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style
Biometrics and kid-friendly mode in back-to-basics blockbuster
AMD unveils Godzilla's graphics card – 'the world's fastest, period'
The Radeon R9 295X2: Water-cooled, 5,632 stream processors, 11.5TFLOPS
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
NORKS' own smartmobe pegged as Chinese landfill Android
Fake kit in the hermit kingdom? That's just Kim Jong-un-believable!
prev story

Whitepapers

Mainstay ROI - Does application security pay?
In this whitepaper learn how you and your enterprise might benefit from better software security.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.