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By the 1980s the modern office was becoming recognisable.
The advent of the PC meant the computer moved from a room in the basement to sitting on the desktop.
Personal computers such as the IBM PC (seen here), the Commodore 64, and the Macintosh 128K introduced a step change in how knowledge was processed.
Not that long before the August 1981 debut of the IBM PC, an IBM computer often cost as much as $9m, as well as requiring an air-conditioned quarter-acre of space and 60 people to run and keep loaded with instructions. In contrast, the IBM PC could process information faster than a 1960s mainframe, for a price tag of less than $1,600.
However, computing technology was still relatively crude by today's standards. In 1980 1GB of hard disk space cost £120,000 in today’s money — compared to about 5p today.
In 1983, the world's first commercial handheld cellular phone, the Motorola DynaTAC 8000X, was also released. A caller could talk for 30 minutes and the LED display and memory could store 30 dialling locations. Bulky mobile phones with a short battery life began to be adopted by managers.
The decade also saw fax machines, printers and push button phones taking over the office.
A close-up of an IBM PC running a WordStar word processor application.
The 1990s saw the birth of the mobile working culture that is prevalent today.
Bulky laptops started to become more common, mobile phone ownership rocketed — to half of the UK population by the end of the decade — and the PalmPilot popularised the concept of a handheld PC.
The barrier to using PCs was lowered as refinements to operating systems and more intuitive GUIs made them increasingly easier to use, with Microsoft introducing the Start-based desktop familiar today with the release of Windows 95.
The World Wide Web first became available to the public in 1991 and by 1996 more than nine million people were connected to the internet, with email and internet use spreading throughout workplaces during the latter half of the 1990s.