Hubris. Wow. So much hubris. The first half of the video below was a promo video Apple made in 1987 under then-CEO John Scully. It was fashioned to be a fake series of clips set ten years in the future (in 1997) that showed how awesome and big Apple would be. From satellites to Macintosh psychiatrists, to even the very notion of success, it's all wrong. It features John Scully, who is proudly featured as the glorious leader of Apple in 1997, Michael Spindler, who would replace him and be fired in 1996, Steve Wozniak, who offers the most insightful comments in the piece, and Del Yoakem, who also had some interesting things to say. Blake Patterson, who posted the video to YouTube, described it as cheesy and cute. Personally it makes me cringe. So much hubris. And it was so wrong, both on technology and Apple's future.
Check out this Apple II promotional video circa 1984. Built on still images, it features voiceovers from Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Paul Terrell, who owned the Byte Shop. The voiceover tells the story of Apple I and Apple II, and includes all manner of tidbits from Apple lore. Highlights for me include Mr. Terrell's recollection of a parts company asking if the two Steves really had an order for 50 Apple I computers, Steve Jobs talking about Woz's ability to reduce components, and several comments about the need for someone to make fully assembled computers. It also features an atrocious song with the lyrics, "Apple II forever and ever/bringing the rainbows to you." It was posted to YouTube in April 2011 by Blake Patterson, who penned a blog post on this and several other Apple promo videos. I hadn't seen it before, and neither had Harry McCracken, who posted something about it on Thursday at FastCompany. It's very interesting, so check it out.
In 1996, Mac clone maker Power Computing commissioned a series of posters from illustrator Frank Kozik. These were great pieces of art that captured the zeitgeist of the platform wars of the 1990s. They exploited both Apple's weaknesses at the time and Power Computing's strengths when it came to making fast computer hardware, while simultaneously harnessing that underdog quality that gripped so many Mac fans at the time. These posters were handed out as schwag at Macworld Expo, Seybold, and other events, and not many have survived. Bob "Dr. Mac" Levitus, who was Power Computing's Director of Eva, just posted his last unframed prints on Ebay. Check them out.
Converting from scrolls to newfangled books can make for a difficult transition. This medieval monk had a very tough time understanding how to operate one. What to do? Why, call the abbey's help desk, of course. It's not new, but still cool. New Apple Watch owner? You'll love it.
The much-hyped Steve Jobs biopic written by Aaron Sorkin, directed by Danny Boyle, and starring Michael Fassbender is giving us a first glimpse into the movie with a just release teaser trailer. The minute-long teaser already looks more interesting than the "Jobs," the earlier biopic starring Ashton Kutcher as Steve Jobs and so far all we have to go on is a very short clip and some voice overs. The movie is based on the only authorized biography of Mr. Jobs by Walter Isaacson, and considering the powerhouse team behind the movie adaptation, there's a good chance it's going to fair much better in theaters than the Kutcher film did. Sorkin's "Steve Jobs" movie is due in theaters this year on October 9.
Jetman Yves Rossy and his protege Jetman Vince Reffet. Jetman...what a great title. Check out this video of these two adventurers flying around with jet-powered flying wings. The video was filmed in and around Dubai, and according to CultofMac, the flying contraptions utilize four small jet engines and can fly for 10 minutes. The video is available in 4K, so sit back and enjoy. It's truly amazing.
Human ingenuity and creativity never cease to amaze me. Check out Wax Nostalgic Carved Crayons, an Etsy shop selling art that Hoang Tran carved from Crayola Crayons. Better yet, check out the mumblestohimself account on Instagram that features the artist's work. There's something about seeing the work with the carving residue in the background that makes it look even better. There's a Tumblr account with yet other views of his work, and it's all amazing. Star Wars figures (shown below), cartoon characters, comic heroes, and all manner of pop culture icons. Too cool.
It's completely useless, yet utterly cool: Corbin Davenport is emulating a Macintosh II on an Android Wear device using Mini vMac II. That's an Android app available on Google Play, but young Mr. Davenport figured out how to make it work on an Android Wear device, more specifically a Samsung Gear Live. Awkward and pointless, running Mac OS on a smartwatch does nothing to better mankind, but knowing there are folks out there who can do this sort of thing makes me feel better about mankind. Check it out (via AndroidPolice), and cheers to Mr. Davenport.
Kids React is a great series on YouTube that exposes young kids to technology—usually old technology, like a rotary telephone. It can be fascinating to see how how some of these things are viewed devoid of all context. The newest installment, however, has kids reacting to something new, the Apple Watch. This, too, is fascinating. For one thing, most of the kids featured knew what it was. For another most of them seemed to instantly grok it, despite the fact that watches as a whole were devoid of context to most of them. My favorite was the young man who had several watches, but quipped, "Who uses a watch to check the time?"
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