I'm Ed Tracy, a graduate student at the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto. This web page is part of a course I took in 1997-8 through the Department of History at U of T, Topics in Material Culture (HIS 1543Y). It was designed for a specific academic setting and its use is intended to remain limited. For such a restricted project, sorting out amorphous net-copywright issues seemed both pedantic and hopelessly unproductive (though I did request permissions, I received no response). Many of the images of computers here were taken from other web sites, acknowledged only in the image sources. So, images as well as text must remain read-only -- use of this site or of any of its content without permission is prohibited.
This web page is dedicated to the study of the personal computer as a cultural artifact rather than simply as a tool or technological accomplishment. Our proximity to and increasing reliance on computers has made it difficult to regard them as material culture. My project is to examine microcomputers, and in particular the products of Apple Computer in the 1980s, as objects developing within a social as well as technological context.
Follow these links to look through my project: