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This Week in Apple History
by Owen Linzmayer
& Bryan Chaffin

June 7 - 13: The Woz Marries, Switcher Campaign Starts, IE Ended
Published September 10th, 2004

[Authors Note: Owen and I are still behind in this series, but are working hard to catch up - Bryan]

This is a relatively calm week in the annals of Apple history. It was this week in 1981 that The Woz tied the knot with Candice Clark, a marriage that would last almost 6 years. One week after the wedding, The Woz went back to school to get his EE degree from UC Berkeley. His chosen name was Rocky Raccoon Clark, but look below for the details on why.

The most interesting thing to happen this week in Apple History is that it was this week in 2002 that Apple's somewhat famous Switcher campaign was launched. The Switcher campaign featured interviews of people who had Switched to the Mac, and why they had Switched. Whether or not the campaign was an actual success (see below), this campaign got lots of people talking about the Mac, and caused Microsoft to post its own, falsified Switcher stories. That's funny stuff.

It was this week in 2003 that an interesting era in Microsoft and Apple relations ended, as Microsoft announced that development for Internet Explorer for the Mac was ending. The stated reason for this was Apple's own Safari Web browser, which was gobbling up market share in the free browser market. Of course, there is a bit of circular logic here in that it is doubtful that Apple would have developed its own browser had Microsoft kept up development of Internet Explorer, but that's neither here, nor there.

You can find more information on many of the entries below in Owen Linzmayer's excellent Apple Confidential 2.0. The other entries can be found in TMO's archives, and we link to articles whenever we can.

June 07-13

1981: Apple co-founder Steven Wozniak marries Candice Carson Clark in Lafayette, California during a ceremony in which country singer Emmylou Harris performed. The two met at Apple less than a year before their wedding. Clark was a former member of the US Olympic kayak team that competed in Montreal in 1976. It is the second marriage for Woz. The couple have three children together, but Woz files for divorce in the spring of 1987.

1981: The week following his wedding, Steve Wozniak enrolls in the University of California at Berkeley's summer program to complete his B.S. degree in computer science. Woz had bounced around from the University of Colorado at Boulder and De Anza College in Cupertino, and then attended Berkeley in 1971, but took a year off to earn money for his tuition. That year off turned into a decade, during which he founded Apple and became extraordinarily wealthy. Now seeking anonymity, Woz enrolled under the name Rocky Raccoon Clark (a combination of his dog's name and his wife's maiden name). Woz would finally receive his bachelor's degree in electrical and engineering sciences from UC Berkeley during a ceremony held on May 17, 1986 (he had left several credits shy of graduation, but was awarded equivalency credits for work done at Apple).

2002: Apple begins "Switcher" advertising campaign in an attempt to lure Windows converts to the Macintosh platform. The ads, directed by documentary filmmaker Errol Morris, feature testimonies from real people who have made the switch from Microsoft's Windows to the Macintosh. Apple CEO Steve Jobs claims the new campaign would be Apple's largest since the company's "Think Different" campaign, which began in 1998. While the ads are warmly received by the Macintosh community for finally spelling out the benefits for the platform in no uncertain terms, they fail to significantly expand Apple's single-digit market share. That said, some credit the campaign with helping to keep Apple's market share from sliding even further during a period when sales were hurt by Motorola's failure to boost the speed of its G4 processor.

2003: Microsoft ceases development on the Macintosh version of Internet Explorer, though it claims it will continue to support the existing release of the popular Web browser.

Roz Ho, the general manager of Microsoft's Mac Business Unit, indicated that the decision was made to clear the way for Apple's upcoming release of Safari, which benefits from close ties between the browser and Mac OS X. When Apple was on the ropes in the late 1990s, a rumor that Microsoft was dropping support for the Mac would have killed Cupertino. But by the time Microsoft decided to drop Internet Explorer, the program had grown long in the tooth and most Mac users eagerly embraced the beta release of Apple's home-grown Safari with its tabbed browsing and superior performance.

is the author of Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World’s Most Colorful Company, published by No Starch Press earlier this year (US$13.97 - Amazon).

is the editor of The Mac Observer, and was egged on, in-part, in his obsession with the Mac by Owen's first book, The Mac Bathroom Reader.

You can send your comments directly to Owen and Bryan, or you can also post your comments below.

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