Posts tagged “mac mini”.

Newton quote of the week – 1.16.09

January 16th, 2009

“If I was CEO at Apple, I would combine the Mac Mini, the Apple TV, and the Airport Base Station into a single machine that goes into folks living rooms and networks all media into what ever the user wants. It is basically the same hardware anyways.

… and I would continue to develop the Newton…”

- matthiasm, on the Newtontalk list

Photo Tour: Mac Plus G4.

December 18th, 2008

Now this is what I’m talking about.

Check out the Flickr photo gallery of a Mac Plus turned into a G4 Cube mod by charles_mangin. I’ve seen a lot of this kind of stuff with Mac Minis, but a Cube seems even more flexible for creative mash-ups.

After messing around with my PowerMac G4, I’m starting to get into these Mac mods. It’s one of those fun weekend project kind of deals, you know?

Speaking of which, there are some cool designs over at the MacMod site. Not all of them are useful, per se, but then neither is a fish tank stuffed in to a Apple Studio Display.

[Courtesy of Mental Hygiene.]

Helping Apple with their Macbook Air marketing

December 16th, 2008

Helping Apple with their marketing

I can’t help but feel sorry for any Macintosh computer being sold at my local Best Buy.

Usually, they sit in the back of the computer aisle, alone and untrusted, with no intelligent human being around to give it the love and customer assistance it needs.

Take the above Macbook Air. I found it harnessed against an aisle wall, together with a Sony Vaio, looking very unattractive. For starters, it was off (the Vaio was turned on). Second, that damned harness took away every bit of aesthetic beauty the Air possessed.

I lingered for a minute, picking it up, acting like I was interested in purchasing for, I don’t know, a relative for Christmas. Yet no Best Buy associate came by to help me out. Were they scared? Did they not trust the machine? Was that why it was turned off?

So, for free, I decided to help Apple out with their Macbook Air marketing. I turned the laptop on, got it logged on to that store’s wireless connection, and shrank the OS X 10.5 Leopard dock down to a mortal size. Then, I launched Photo Booth. What better marketing tool than a laptop that will take your picture?

It was a real attention-grabber. Customers would walk by, catch their own image on the screen, and stop to play around with the Mac.

Since Best Buy started selling Macs, I often wonder if they’re getting the attention they so rightfully deserve. The first Mac I ever saw in a Best Buy – a Mac mini, back when it was first released in 2005 – was at least turned on and ready for me to poke around the desktop. This Air, an even lovelier computer, was abandoned like a Packard Bell in some dusty, remote corner of the store. Shame on you, Best Buy.

No need to send a check, Apple. This is the kind of thing your fans will do for you, if only you treat us well once in a while (see: iPhone). Hopefully that Macbook Air finds a good home – before it’s too late.

What about the Mac Mini?

June 16th, 2008

How are Mac Mini sales doing?

I always wonder about the Mac Mini.

Every time I see one I want to touch it, and I’m always on the look-out for a cheap enough model to buy. But I wonder how the Mac Mini’s sales are doing.

When it was launched, people predicted the Mini – then a G4 – would sell pretty well. Then, last summer, sites predicted the death of the Mini. Since Leopard was release, the Mini just hangs in limbo.

It’s a shame, too, because people love the pint-sized Mac enough to mod the heck out of it. Media centers, car computers – you name it, someone has put a Mini inside it. But how well does it sell overall?

The original idea was to offer up a below-$1,000 Mac so that Window users, who already own a capable monitor and keyboard/mouse set, could jump ship easily and cheaply. The Mini could run OS X and MS Office software and anything else you could throw at it, and users could expect a machine to help them “learn” the Mac OS without whipping through 40 Photoshop filters at top speed. You knew it was a modest system. You didn’t expect a whole lot.

As it stands today, though, people are switching to Apple – but mostly through the notebook route. What’s the Mac Mini’s role in all this? A new MobileMe-only device? A music server?

Plus, OS X 10.5 requires more powerful hardware, and the Mini’s modest specs seem to not up to the new iMac’s standards, I guess I’m just worried the tiny Mac will get lost in the (non-iPod) shuffle. If sales are sluggish, would Apple just drop it? Would the monitor-less experiment be over? And what about the dreaded xMac?

If anyone knows, I’d love to hear about it.

A new Apple Newton wouldn’t be the same.

January 30th, 2008

A good point about what makes the MessagePad so accessible, from the newtontalk.net mailing list:

A sudden nasty angle to any revival of the Newton came to my mind as I was thinking about how incredibly fortunate we are. The Newton that we know and love has survived the cruel rejection by its parent, Apple, because its construction is such that it’s relatively straightforward to dismantle and otherwise tinker with it. Even if such hardware tinkering isn’t to all our tastes, it’s doable for enough of us that all of us can benefit, and the results are a thriving user base a decade after Apple stopped supporting it, and a machine that’s stable even if it’s no longer cutting edge.

This is a good time to stop and thank all the Newtonians who comprise that hard-core of hardware (and software) fixers, modders and hackers, who help us all fight off Newton-entropy. I hope some day I get a chance to buy all you guys a drink — though perhaps I’ll need to do that a little at a time.

Christian, the smart guy who came up with all this, said a modern-day Newton would be a Mac Mini-style PDA: closed, non-upgradeable, and therefore less fun.

Smart stuff, and I think that’s what makes the Newton so fun to tinker with – namely, you can tinker with it!

Check out the NewtonTalk archives here.