If You Don’t Speak, He Can’t Listen

On July 18, 2002, in Opinion, by Mark A Collins

By the time you read this, MacWorld Expo will have come and gone. New announcements will be unveiled. Either Steve Jobs will rock the Mac community, or he will disappoint them. Either is fine with me. Steve Jobs has a real balancing act on his hand. On the one hand, you have Mac rumor and regular news sites whose appetite for new Mac gear exceeds the laws of physics, business profitability, and any one person’s imagination. On the other hand, Steve must manage to excite Mac users with Apple’s new gear if it wants to continue to make a profit. This leads to MacWorld Post Depression Syndrome. The realization that Apple can’t make phasers, quantum torpedoes, or warp drive for your new iMac.

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Yo Steve

On February 1, 1998, in Apple Cart, by Susan Howerter

If there were no Steve, as a wise man once sort of said, we would have had to invent him. Open letters, addressed only to ‘Steve’, punctuate the Web. Sometimes laudatory. Sometimes derogatory. Sometimes desperate. But always, just ‘Steve’.

“Steve,” we say.
“Steve!” We shout
“Steve…” we plead on bended knee.

No wonder he has an ego the size of Alaska! But does he listen? Does he know? Does he even care? He certainly doesn’t answer. And when he does, beware. Beware the charm. Beware the wrath. Beware the reality distortion field.

The ancient Greeks and Romans would have understood. Fits of hubris, rage and jealousy? All just a part of the heavenly circus. And what of the charm, the wit, the charisma? The ability to change our world with a word or a whim? Pure Pantheon theatrics.

Zeus on a shoestring. How badly we need him. In our troubled drama, with both comedy and tragedy awaiting us in the wings, we need more than a faceless company, certainly more than a headless committee.We need a lead, larger than life, prancing wildly center stage. In short, we need a Hero. An anti-hero will do. Or, if all else fails, a whipping boy.

But we need something, someone, somewhere to focus our fears. To hear our prayers. Maybe, even, to answer them. And, as Steve himself once sort of said, he’s the only shot we’ve got.

So, as the Mac world stands transfixed, a giant meteor on the horizon hurtling headlong on a collision course with the rest of us, we scan the skies and cry:

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Macintosh Babble
My Mac Magazine #32, Dec. ’97

On December 1, 1997, in Macintosh Babble, by Shay Fulton

Whether or not you agree with everything that Steve Jobs has done since his return to Apple, you have to admit one thing: Steve is the man for the job. There’s no one I respect more than Jobs because he has shown us that you can start turning an entire company around in a matter of months. He created Apple, and even though much had changed since he left, he still knows what’s best for the company. And with a phenomenal board of directors backing him up, we’re seeing results. Great results.

When Jobs first came back to Apple, I was overjoyed. I knew then that something good would happen soon. Times were dark, and most everything that Apple did was upsetting. It was a broken record. Little was being done and nothing was changed. Then, within a matter of moments, things started changing. And then, in the blink of an eye, everything was becoming clearer. This was an Apple we had not seen in years, and we had no idea what to think. Apple was pushing forward, looking optimistic, and shining bright. The future actually looked sunny, and for the first time in months, maybe years, Apple was thriving.

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Notes from the Editor #10

On February 1, 1996, in Opinion, by Tim Robertson

After sending in my registration for TechTool 1.0.9, I received a nice thank you note from the manufacturer with the following quote attached:

“DOS Computers manufactured by companies such as IBM, Compaq, Tandy, and millions of others are by far the most popular, with about 70 million machines in use wordwide. Macintosh fans, on the other hand, may note that cockroaches are far more numerous than humans, and that numbers alone do not denote a higher life form.” (New York Times, November 26, 1991)

With all the talk of Apple in decline, I thought I would share this tidbit of old news.
In 1984, Steve Jobs (Co-founder of Apple with Steve Wozniak) and John Sculley (then president of Apple) were talking deals with AT&T, Wang, and General Motors about joining forces to better take on IBM. Could you imagine where the Macintosh would be today if they had indeed joined with AT&T? When Apple released Macintosh, they only had a couple hundred engineers. AT&T, at the same time, had over thirty thousand! It would also have given them instant credibility world wide, as AT&T was the only American company able to take on the IBM behemoth. But here we are, twelve years later, and Apple is still going strong. (Regardless of what the press would have us believe).

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