Today is the 20th anniversary of the Macintosh. Friends and co-workers often call me a Mac fanatic but I reject that classification. I am certainly a big fan but it’s not because I worship the box or the company. The reason I continue to purchase Macintosh machines year after year (going back 19 of those 20 years) is simple. I just prefer using the best. I can’t afford top of the line in most of the rest of my life but in this case I can. The other 95% of the world can use their dull grey boxes featuring the ever popular blue screen of death (still featured in the Big Monopoly’s XP) and virus of the month. I just want the right to use the tools that work best without being called a cultist.
Besides, my attraction for the Mac goes way beyond style and color. Apple is unique in making both the box and the software that runs it. In doing so, they are able to produce a computer that works reliably and is fun to use at the same time. The company also develops some of the best creative tools anywhere (compare iMovie and the BM’s Movie Maker for a very stark contrast). Some of us will pay extra for this kind of quality (but it’s not that much more than the ordinary stuff!).
Incidentally, if you listen very carefully you can hear an "expert" somewhere writing a column saying that Apple is doomed, can’t survive, will be eaten alive by <insert name of company here>. I don’t know why these guys (are you listening Dvorak?) bother creating a new column when they could just recycle one of the thousands of similar articles that have said the very same thing every year for the entire history of the company. These "experts" don’t understand that Apple survives and, these days, thrives by being more innovative than anyone else. They’ve been doing it for most of their history and, even with some screw ups along the way, they are still the company everyone else loves to copy.
So, here’s to another 20 years of great computing. I’m already saving for the G5 dual-processor 17″ PowerBook that I know is in my future. It will be interesting to see what other neat surprises come with it.