Macintosh is a line of desktop and laptop computers developed by Apple. Each Macintosh computer, or Mac, runs a version of the Mac OS, Apple’s desktop operating system. Since 2001, all Macs have run Mac OS X, a redesigned version of the original Mac OS that was built from the NeXTSTEP operating system.
The original Macintosh, released in 1984, was the first personal computer to have a graphical user interface, or GUI. It was in all-in-one machine with a color display and included a mouse and a keyboard. Over the past several decades, Apple has released many new types of Macintosh computers, including all-in-one models, system units (which do not include a monitor), and portable computers.
The current Macintosh line (as of early 2012) includes the following models:
Mac Pro – a professional desktop computer sold as a system unit
iMac – an all-in-one desktop computer aimed at home and pro users
Mac mini – a small desktop computer designed for home and server purposes
MacBook Pro – a portable computer aimed towards students and pro users
MacBook Air – a lightweight portable computer designed for travelers
NOTE: While Macs are technically personal computers (PCs), the term PC is often used to describe computers that run Windows or Linux. Therefore, Macs are often referred to as personal computers, but not PCs. Unlike PCs, which are manufactured by several different companies, Apple designs and manufactures all Macintosh computers.