In Pictures: The good, bad and ugly history of Microsoft hardware

Microsoft built its identity on software development. Just refer to the name, and pay special attention to the "soft." But throughout its storied history, the company has progressively become much more of a multi-discipline workshop, producing physical gear alongside ethereal software code. And now we have the Surface RT tablet, the perfect springboard to recount some of the most memorable (and forgettable) products in Microsoft's hardware history.

1983: Microsoft Mouse

Fondly known as the "The Green-Eyed Monster," the Microsoft Mouse came bundled with Microsoft Word, Notepad and an on-screen tutorial to (get this) teach people how to use it! The proto-mouse came in a bus or serial version, and supported a programmable interface driver for application developers. What started as an easy way to interact with Microsoft Word's GUI in DOS led to something that became as natural as a handshake.

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