Last week I thought I had lost my mojo. Or something. I was following Jason Snell and MJCP here on the AMW website as they detailed the Apple event live from Cupertino.
First the stats – bigger, better, bolder, as usual. Yawn. Apple were great when they had 2% of the market – they had to be to survive. Does 20 – 30- 40 – percent make them any better? Or will the nascent arrogance I am sensing morph into Microsoftian proportions? Get on with it.
Designer Ive then gets his jollies with the fine details of how they bored the new unibody out of a single piece of aluminium. Bored me too. Perhaps I missed something. Later in the day a mate rang me raving about the brilliant design process, but then he trained as a fitter and turner. I did Latin. And I hate cars as well.
Then on comes Jobs. Perhaps this will be better. Nvidia Geforce and another stream of stats. Games? The only games I’m interested in are real ones. Like with some sort of ball in a real environment. Well, how about a new trackpad? Nup, always use a mouse. My sport-battered fingers don’t do trackpads very well. New Macbook Pro, Air, Cinema Display (brief flicker of interest) new Macbook.
Again, not much there for me. Even before the Aussie dollar headed for Antarctica I wasn’t in the market. My G4 ibook, even though it is now even more palpably ancient, still does what I need it for. And the 24-inch Intel iMac does the rest.
Just to confirm I wasn’t suffering from a mere temporary loss of Apple devotion, I watched the new Macbook video later in the day. I have to admit to some shards of remorse. These keen and excited guys believed they had changed the world and I still didn’t care.
But I wasn’t always like this. I remember an Apple hoo-ha in Melbourne around 1990 when they launched the LC – the first affordable color Mac. I signed up straight away. And later, the Quadra with video in and out for the first time. Put me on the waiting list!
Then, gradually, it became more businesslike such that by the time I came to order my current Macs it was from a well-worked cost/benefit analysis. What will the new model do that I can’t already do? When I do eventually upgrade I’ll probably appreciate the innovations unveiled last week. But not at the moment. And yes, I did run an envy check through my system. Computer said No.
What about an iPhone then? Definitely not. Regular podcast listeners will know I am waging a spectacularly long, pointless and unsuccessful one-man war against such devices stemming from unpleasant experiences as a musician when mobiles first violated our remaining social niceties. There is no substitute for pettiness, a wise teacher once told me. Or was it pomposity? I admit to both.
So does that make me a reformed hardware junkie? Almost but not quite. I already have two iPods and confess to lascivious feelings towards the new iPod Touch. And with Christmas on the horizon…
But for me there’ll always be the new software rush. I rejoice in the burgeoning power upgrades of the already impressive iWork suite. After a trial separation I’ve just fallen in love with Final Cut again. Seriously this time. I savour with lingering delight the brilliant and powerful new features that each iLife update brings. Particularly GarageBand. It just fell out of the sky. Did anyone see it coming?
I love the wacky woodgrain touch and the amazing power delivered in such a simple interface. And they keep stacking new features into it. I might write a song tonight. ‘Stevie you’re a wonder – yeah, oh yeah.’