The original Macintosh manual

Some time ago I came across the manual for the original Macintosh. It’s quite fascinating.

When you open it, it feels almost a bit surreal. A bit like watching Teletubbies, the TV-show made for 2-3 year olds. Why? Because it explains things we all know by heart since a long time ago, as something completely new. But once upon a time it really was!

It’s actually refreshing as an exercise when trying to think beyond the obvious, seing what you do with the beholders eyes. Once upon a time these things were new and familiar, even if it is hard to imagine now.

But the manual is not only banal. It also has some interesting experience elements, as it shows the product being used in various situations. How many manuals have you encountered that actually were inspiring?

Producing such an advanced manual must have cost a lot of money, but the success depended on people understanding how to use it, as it was the Macintosh USP. And maybe, maybe, the inspirational pictures helped to some part to start the almost fanatic loyalty of todays Mac users, conveying not only information but a good feeling.

See some examples here.

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