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January 31, 2005


Danny, your computer column today reminded me of my very first computer -- a Kaypro with Wordstar. It looked like a minature tank in army-green. Åfter using PCs for 20 years, I bought my first Mac the end of last year -- an iMac G5. I've already become a Mac-snob, urging everyone to switch. Now I'm caressing iPod mini's and trying to justify a purchase. Any legitimate reasons?

That reminds me of the cartridge-based Texas Instruments computer I had to use in my first job. And also the precursor to the Mac, the Apple IIe with those awful blurry monitors that probably dosed us with more radiation than Chernobyl. Mazel tov on your switch to Macs, Elaine, you made the right choice! And OF COURSE you have to have an iPod mini, unless you already have a regular iPod. If so, then you need to wait (five minutes) until that model is obsolete before shelling out the bucks for a new one. I am in awe of my iPod, I don't think people appreciate how revolutionary this device really is. But Just Say No to the new iPod Shuffle. As Leah moaned while examining one in the Apple Store the other day, "What do you mean I can't pick what song I want to listen to?"

danny how much money have you spent on apple computers in the last 21 years?

Oy, Greg, I'm afraid to calculate that. If I had to guess I'd say somewhere in the neighborhood of $20,000 including Apple peripherals. It's amazing how the prices have plummeted as the technology has advanced. Sure makes you think twice about buying a flat screen TV right now or anything else considered "new." Kendall was talking yesterday about the first time she used a cell phone and was walking outside exclaiming "I'M ACTUALLY TALKING TO YOU FROM THE STREET!!" to her amazed friends. And now we take it for granted that every sentient being on the planet has a cell phone attached to their ear. Where will this all lead? I'm sure computers as hardware will cease to exist at some point and there will be some kind of chip implanted into our brains at birth...

Cripes, that's a great post. Only a freaking fanatic could come up with that much reverent detail.

I have always used a PC. I'd eat a meal of Spam and horsecrap if someone served it up -- I'll deal with whatever's put in front of me. I've never been able to summon up any kind of reverence for any kind of thing. That's why I'm not particularly good at any kind of thing!

Do you remember the funny, crabby little typeface on the early apples? And that square-headed guy with the little half-smile who would keep you "entertained" while the computer struggled mightily to do its thing?

Again it's like Danny reads my mind then writes about it. Only much clearer and in much more detail than I can conjure up. Much funnier too!

I love my Mac but I know so many techies who look upon me with utter distain.
The folks who write code pray to their PCs. They think of us as mere software users unable to truly communicate with a computer. Of course, they dream in code.

“I admit that people who love Macs are very much like cult members or fetishists. I’m sure PC people want to sink into the ground when they see us coming because they know we’re about to launch into one of our smug speeches on the inherent superiority of the Macintosh.”

I’ve always referred to this as “Macatitude”, the rather obnoxious behavior that can sometimes beset someone who suddenly finds themselves wanting to place the Apple decal that came with the Mac on their car. (The car being, in most cases, a new VW Beetle.)

I should add though, I grew up with Apples and still have a 5 ¼ inch disk signed by no other than Steve Wozniak himself. My father, (in what I always thought was an act of rebellion against his father who designed mainframes for IBM from the 1950’s until his retirement in the 1990’s), brought home our first Apple II+ in the late 70’s making our family the first in the area to have a home computer. Even though my sister and I always feel asleep when he tried to teach us “Logo”, the children’s programming language, I have always been grateful that my father made sure we were always comfortable around technology. (Although I wished that feeling would have extended to childhood horror of having father who made our computer joysticks for games while all the other kids had “real” store bought ones.)

Hmm. I just remembered. I wrote my whole dissertation on an Apple - tiny one.

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