Post of the Day
October 13, 1999

Board Name:
Apple Computer

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Subject:  Recent PC/Mac debacle
Author:  sakneussen

My my...
The "What Apple has to do..." PC/Mac thread got a little spirited didn't it?

Urrr... why is this war being waged on a message board whos charter is to discuss the merits of investing in Apple stock? I cannot for the life of me, imagine a group of rogue Mac users trashing a Dell or Compaq board with flames about those company's products. But that's just me. If there are Mac-users out there like that, I'd want to distance myself as much from them as from our newly-disgruntled friends from the other side of the tech market.

"The primary reason for new investments in Apple 2 years ago ... was that it was reclaiming its monetary value."

What this argument has inevitably boiled down to over the past 10 years or so is "My computer is better", only this argument, from an investment standpoint, is not only stale; it's just about irrelevant. The primary reason for new investments in Apple 2 years ago (aside from the emotional impulse of devotees, which I am one) was that it was reclaiming its monetary value. Now, the real reason to invest in Apple is that there's an ocean of economic potential for beautifully-designed technology in the consumer-desktop-electronics space, and Apple is poised at the threshold of that space with one foot already on the other side of the door to it.

I honestly think this makes "box-maker" fans uneasy, not only because they may be eating past words, but because those words, I'm sure, have a certain dollar amount attached to them. Apple is raining on that parade by showing the light in what must be a rude awakening on the future of consumer technology. Will there be a repeat of what happened the first time Apple went out on a limb? Only if, like last time, Apple gets complacent and gives it away, but this time, they'd much more likely concede defeat to Sony than Microsoft.

When Apple paved the way for the personal computer industry, the elements that made Macs great were far too subtle for the average person to care about. Now it's 15 years later, and technology is no longer the domain of the technical, it's a cultural phenomenon. It has come to pass that we now need the Mac by necessity, not as a luxury.

"What the world wants, and more importantly, what the world seems to need ..., is a bright friendly vision of the future..."
The interesting thing is, Apple did not make this happen. Rather, Apple saw that it WOULD happen... eventually, and that they wanted to be there way ahead of time. Ok... so maybe they were there a decade too early (timing is sooo important). The brilliance of that was so insanely great, that the entire public, including the box-makers, did not catch its significance, even as Apple fumbled the ball and left it gesticulating in enemy territory for nearly a decade.

What it takes in terms of vision to craft an object that is not only technologically and psychically sensitive but physically artful, is no small affair. (This, by the way, *should* be apparent to everyone, lest one think this is mindless Apple propaganda). What the world wants, and more importantly, what the world seems to need at the turn of a century bedeviled with age old superstitions and anxieties, is a bright friendly vision of the future, and what, I ask you, could fill this need more effectively than a bright shiny iMac? I just don't see Dell or Compaq posing a threat to this arena any time soon, with or without the megahertz.