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The Computer War

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PC stands for Personal Computer and refers to any IBM-compatible computer. A computer that is IBM-compatible means that its architecture is based on the IBM microprocessor. The PC uses many different parts from different manufacturers like Nvidia, ATI, AMD, and Intel. A number of different operating systems are compatible with PCs, the most popular of which is Microsoft Windows. Some others are the Unix variants, such as Linux, FreeBSD and Solaris. Thanks to the flexibility of PC parts, companies will sell proprietary hardware computers; which means that all the parts in the computer are only available through that manufacture.

Mac is short for Macintosh and refers to any computer produced by Apple Computer. Macs are traditionally classified separately from PCs because they are based on the PowerPC architecture from Apple/IBM/Motorola instead of the traditional Intel based microprocessors that have powered PCs for decades. A great deal of software is also compatible with either Mac or PC, but not both.

As time moves on the line between Mac and PC as begun to blur. Apple redesigned their operating system based on UNIX in 2000, and more software packages and file formats have become inter operable between PCs and Macs every day. In early 2006, Apple switched to an Intel architecture for their computer systems which now makes it possible to run Microsoft Windows on Mac hardware. Up until this point Apple hardware only support the Macintosh Operating System (Mac OS), and Mac OS itself was not compatible with any other hardware besides Apple's.



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