Monday, February 10, 1997

The Sky Is Falling!

Editor's NOTE: This is a moldie oldie that I pulled from a text dump archive. None of the links will work anymore (or 99% won't) - but the names and companies have NOT changed.

NOT! If I read just one more nay-sayer predict the demise of Apple Computer, I'm going to get out the nearest butter knife and slash my wrists.

To be sure, losing 125+ MILLION dollars per quarter isn't a GOOD thing... HOWEVER, there are some bright spots that just recently appeared:

  • the Gil-meister decreed that there will be no executive bonuses (read: multi-million dollar giveaways) to any executives until Apple has returned to profitability;

  • the newly-reorged folks at the top of the technology food chain are folks from NeXT (read: they know the new OS inside and out - literally!);

  • Claris' ex-president and helluva good presenter, Guerrino De Luca is now in charge of Apple marketing (read: REAL ads touting the Mac's benefits, not the typical "Mission Impossible" crap);

  • looking ahead to Rhapsody, Senior Vice President of Software Engineering Avadis Tevanian and Vice President of AppleSoft Marketing Jim Gable said Apple plans to offer a version of that OS for Intel-standard PCs (read: watch out Windows!);

  • Apple is slashing prices across the board (read: say goodbye to the "it's more expensive" PC argument);

  • Etc., etc., etc.
There will always be the folks who can't get enough of doomsday predictions - just like there are people who continue to read and believe tabloids (as Jerry Seinfeld said on 60 Minutes "...people who believe tabloids deserve to be lied to...")! As for me, I'm going to continue to use the best tool for the job.

Sure, someday (1st dev release of Rhapsody is due in summer) Apple will come out with the NeXT operating system - but until then I'm happy using what I've got. I'm writing this column, sending email, designing web pages, writing software, sending files via FTP, and listening to streaming audio while playing a CD all at the same time!

Interactive Reader Exercise: try this on DOS, Windows 3.1, Windows 95, or Windows NT on a machine right out of the box. Go ahead, I'll wait.

Nice try! Computers are a tool that should be used to make one's life easier - not cause higher blood pressure, loud shouts of obscenities, and overall general mayhem. If you're like 95% of the rest of the world, and you use a Windows machine - great. I've got nothing against INTEL-box users, quite the contrary - some of my best friends (and relatives) are constantly on the phone to me asking why the hell they can't print (or fax, or dial out, or run software on "only" 16 megs of RAM, etc.).

I'll admit it - I even OWN an INTEL box (of course, it's in the warehouse collecting dust because the FedEx software won't run on less than 60 MB of disk space and 16 MB of RAM [thanks Mr. Gates!]), the disk-doubled hard drive loses data on a semi-regular basis, the external CD drive doesn't have a Win 95 driver so won't work on Windows 95, etc.

Interactive Reader Exercise #2: do a network install of Windows 95 from FLOPPIES. Have a NICE DAY (I mean weekend).

The bottom line is this - use the tool that works the best for you, period. In the case of me and mine, we'll stick with Mac OS as our tool of choice thank you very much. Even if Apple went out of business tomorrow afternoon, we would still continue to use the Mac OS because it does the one thing we bought computers for in the first place - it helps us get our work done with a minimum of hassle and virtually no "down time."

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