“Over 30 years ago, Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs was still having to explain how computers would be useful to regular people,” Ali Montag reports for CNBC. “‘A computer is the most incredible tool we’ve ever seen. It can be a writing tool, a communications center, a supercalculator, a planner, a filer and an artistic instrument all in one, just by being given new instructions, or software, to work from,’ Jobs said to Playboy in a 1985 interview.”

“At that time, computers were expensive and difficult to use,” Montag reports. “Jobs, however, had a vision for what they may someday become.”

Here are three predictions he made in 1985 that he got right, and one he got wrong:

1. Computers will be used at home, for fun: “Computers will be essential in most homes,” Jobs predicted.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs

2. We will use computers to interact with each other: “The most compelling reason for most people to buy a computer for the home will be to link it into a nationwide communications network,” Jobs said.

3. Computers will have a mouse: “It’s much faster to do all kinds of functions, such as cutting and pasting, with a mouse, so it’s not only easier to use but more efficient,” Jobs said.

4. Software will be competitive, while hardware will be monopolized: “In terms of supplying the computer itself, it’s coming down to Apple and IBM,” Jobs told Playboy. “And I don’t think there are going to be a lot of third- and fourth-place companies, much less sixth- or seventh-place companies. Most of the new, innovative companies are focusing on the software. I think there will be lots of innovation in the areas of software but not in hardware.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Jobs was actually right on #4, but perhaps he thought the law would protect the innovator better than it obviously has managed to do.

Most of the innovation in modern computing from the Mac to iPod to iPhone to iPad to Apple Watch have come from one company: Apple. The rest (Windows PCs, Zunes et al., Android phones, Android and Windows tablets, also-ran stupidwatches) are just bad knockoffs of Apple’s innovations. In effect, there’s just one paradigm-shifting hardware innovator: Apple.

As Jobs also corrected predicted: Most of the new, innovative companies are focusing on the software.