Very Rare Machine, the First Laptop
Made by GriD Systems in 1982
Good condition, only a few very light scratches, none thru the paint
and one tiny paint chip (bottom left, picture 7).
If you touch up the chip and give a careful clean/polish it should look like new.
!!! WORKING !!!
We played with this for hours, it is solid.
Just the computer, no cables, no accessories, no _
USA BUYERS :
There are no import fees or taxes for computer equipment valued at less than $200.
All UPS shipping includes tracking and insurance.
CANADIAN BUYERS :
Canadian buyers must pay GST/HST so it is helpful if Canadians wait for an invoice before paying.
No local pickup. __
OVERSEAS BUYERS :
STANDARD international shipping rate does not provide tracking or
UPS Expedited includes tracking and insurance.
UPS Express (if offered) includes tracking and insurance and import brokerage fees.
Do not ask us to misrepresent the value of an item.ZOZ-000-from the web:
Former Xerox executive John Ellenby founded GriD Systems Corp in
January 1979. Glenn Edens and David Paulsen later joined as co-founders
(in Sept 1979 and November 1979, respectively). They moved from a
garage to their first office building in August of 1980 at which time
they started hiring people. The company was very secretive (not even
telling job applicants what they might be working on) and remained in
stealth mode till March 30, 1981 when they issued their first press
release. The original GriD concept was inspired by Alan Kay's vision of
a Dynabook (more about this later in the session). Ellenby wanted to
develop a portable email terminal, while Glen envisioned a portable
personal computer. Indeed, Eden said his primary contribution was to
push the founding team to do a whole computer, complete with local
processing and storage (rather then a dumb terminal with only email
The GriD Compass 1100 computer was actually the key element of the "GriD Navigator System." The other two elements were GriD Central and GriD Compass Central (see below). The GriD Navigator System
was described in a brochure as being a "tool to let the manager and
business professional gain command and control of information critical
to sound business management." It was said to "help you gather,
analyze, and present management information for more timely, thorough
business solutions with less effort." The GriD Compass was
described as "the first personal, portable computer designed to connect
you to all the resources within your organization, outside information
services and to GriD's advanced management software tools."
The original GriD Compass 1101 included many state of the art
components and modules: Intel 8086 microprocessor, 8087 arithmetic
co-processor, 256K bytes DRAM, 384K bytes bubble memory (non-volatile
storage), electro-luminescent active matrix display, 57 key keyboard,
integral 300/1200 bps modem with audio, telephone handset and speaker,
RS-232C/RS-422 serial port, IEEE 488 GPIB peripheral interface, GriD
link LAN, and a clock/calendar with lithium battery back-up. It
weighed a little more than 8 ¬? pounds and consumed 60 Watts of power.
The GriD Compass was manufactured in Mt View, CA in 1980 and 1981 (in
those years, off-shore manufacturing of computers was not nearly as
prevalent as today). They had a full, integrated suite of software
which all fit in 256K of memory. GriD could also handle "compound
documents" at that time
GriD Central was described in a brochure as "a 24 hour service
to provide advanced applications software and remote file storage over
the phone (line) to any GriD Compass user." It was based on a large
fault tolerant, multi-minicomputer configuration, located at the GriD
headquarters building in Mt View, CA. The GriD Central was actually
based on a cluster of IBM Series/1 computers with mirrored IBM 3330
compatible storage (from CDC).
GriD Compass Central, based on the Intel 80186 microprocessor,
was intended to link up to 32 GriD Compass laptop PCs together as a
personal version of GRiD central. It was described in a brochure as "a
compact table top computer". Said to be a lot like Apple Talk, the GriD
Compass Central's capabilities included remote file storage and
printing. Compass Central was said to "let you share data and
peripherals and exchange messages directly with other Compass users."
Glenn noted that the GriD Compass was used extensively in space exploration.
It was the first portable computer to be taken into space via the NASA
space shuttle. NASA modified the GriD by replacing the modem module
with a Shuttle Bus interface board, designed by Rockwell International.
That enabled the GriD to communicate with on board instruments. The
GriD Compass flew on all of the NASA shuttle missions. It also flew on
Air Force One (the U.S. President's private plane).
The GriD management team was "obsessed with briefcases." They wanted this portable computer to be carried in a briefcase by mainstream business professionals. In an April 1982 Business Week article, the GriD Compass was touted as "a Porsche for top executives." In December 1982, Fortune magazine named the GriD Compass one of the Products of the Year under the category of "Smallest Computers."
The end of the GriD era came in March 1988 when it was announced that Tandy was buying GriD Systems Corp.
The deal was approved on June 28, 1988 at a special meeting of
shareholders. Glenn said that MSFT later re-introduced the product
Tandy acquired as the "tablet PC."