What is the IBM PS/2 Personal System? Explanation of the evolution and basic concepts of personal computers

Explanation of IT Terms

What is the IBM PS/2 Personal System?

The IBM PS/2 Personal System, commonly known as the IBM PS/2, was a line of personal computers introduced by International Business Machines (IBM) in 1987. It was a significant milestone in the evolution of personal computers and played a crucial role in shaping the industry.

The PS/2 marked a departure from IBM’s earlier Personal Computer (PC) platform and introduced several innovative features and technical advancements. One of the most notable changes was the introduction of the Micro Channel Architecture (MCA), a new industry-standard expansion bus that provided faster data transfer and improved compatibility.

Another key feature of the IBM PS/2 was the inclusion of the PS/2 keyboard and mouse connectors, which replaced the older PC/AT connectors. These new connectors became the industry standard and are widely used to this day.

The PS/2 line of computers also introduced a new form factor known as the 3.5-inch floppy disk drive, which became the de facto standard for portable storage media for many years. Additionally, the PS/2 introduced the VGA (Video Graphics Array) display standard, offering higher resolution and improved graphics capabilities.

With the IBM PS/2, IBM aimed to establish an open industry standard and regain control over the rapidly expanding personal computer market, which was being dominated by IBM-compatible clones. However, the PS/2 platform faced significant challenges due to its proprietary nature and higher costs compared to the compatible clones.

Regardless of its commercial success, the IBM PS/2 represented a significant step forward in personal computer technology. Its innovative features and design choices had a lasting impact on the industry, influencing the design of future computer systems.

In conclusion, the IBM PS/2 Personal System was a line of personal computers introduced by IBM in 1987. It brought several technical advancements, including the Micro Channel Architecture, new keyboard and mouse connectors, and the VGA display standard. While it may not have achieved commercial dominance, the PS/2 played a crucial role in the evolution of personal computers and its impact is still felt in the industry today.

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