Taylor Pohlman is a principal with Rohner and Associates, and the cofounder of the 1982 software startup Forethought, Inc. which released PowerPoint in 1987. In this oral history, Pohlman describes the trajectory of his involvement with computing, starting at the University of Texas, Austin in the late 1960s, into educational computing in the first half of the 1970s, and to a computing job with Hewlett-Packard in the late 1970s. He traces his experiences at Apple Computer from 1979 to 1982, including product management roles for the Apple II and Apple III. In 1982, Pohlman left Apple to co-found Forethought, Inc. which sought to bring a GUI operating system and dynamic object oriented documents with many different functions to the IBM PC. He describes the story of Forethought, which eventually pivoted to the publication of software for the Apple Macintosh, like FileMaker, and the creation of its own presentation software – PowerPoint. He describes his return to Apple in the mid 1980s, and his work there to the early 1990s in various marketing and engineering roles. The interview also includes a brief review of his experiences thereafter at Sybase, Autodesk, and Rohner and Associates.
Software; Apple; Apple III (Computer); Forethought, Inc.; presentation software; PowerPoint; GUI; Object-oriented programming (Computer science); Marketing