Apple is suing Microsoft over a graphical user interface called Windows, and Interplay is bringing the first fully three-dimensional shooter out March 17th. Every day, PC Games Hardware takes a look back at the young but eventful history of the computer.
…1988: No, Apple didn’t invent the graphical user interface for computers. Steve Jobs himself was inspired by a Xerox prototype for the supposedly revolutionary interface of the Apple computers Lisa and Macintosh. But it was the Mac that popularized this type of computer control using the mouse, including icons and windows, in 1984, while the DOS-based PC was still operated via the old-fashioned command line. However, Microsoft followed suit and announced Windows in 1985, which was heavily based on Mac OS. The popularity of this system grew slowly, but it grew, especially with version 2.0 – reason enough for Apple to sue Microsoft, and it did so on March 17, 1988. Microsoft is said to have stolen a total of 13 details from its competitor. The copyright dispute dragged on for several years and ended in Apple’s defeat. More lawsuits follow, for example because of Windows 95, but all lawsuits end in 1997: Apple is in trouble and drops all charges – in return for a small cash injection from Microsoft.
…1995: After the first 3D shooters had been on the market for a year and more, developer Parallax Software delivered the first shooter on March 17, 1995, which offers both freedom of movement along three axes and a completely 3D-based world. Descent, as the work distributed by Interplay was called, puts the player in a small spaceship, with the help of which he has to explore mines in zero gravity and destroy the central reactor – optionally hostages of the mining robots, which got out of control due to a virus, can be freed. In contrast to earlier shooters, which used 2D sprites to represent opponents, Descent also uses polygon-based 3D models for the robots, only power-ups and hostages were still represented by sprites.