design, technology



The thirtieth anniversary of Apple’s Macintosh computer is an excellent opportunity to remind a special few of you about the things Apple has done for human beings who weren’t engineers or programmers, and about the things Apple did first, before commodity manufacturers could rewrite the history of consumer computing with trash-talk and gossip. That special few of you will include people who dismiss any technology that’s too easy to learn or that enables too many people who don’t build their own computers or write their own software.

You guys (and yes, almost all of you are and always have been guys, and you like it that way) were rarely helpful if you could instead find a way to be condescending, impatient, and ultimately dismissive. You provided object behavioral lessons for anyone who practices a specialty on how not to work with people outside of that specialty. You enjoyed being deferred to… way too much. You gave nerds a bad name and not a few of you are still doing your best to continue that sad tradition. Despite the fact that, year over year, fewer of the rest of us are asking for your opinions about anything.

Here’s something you weren’t remotely capable of doing while you castigated the Macintosh as a toy and treated its users like idiots:

Apple fundamentally enabled my chosen career, helped remove it from the toxic materials it had relied upon in previous generations, and gave it a wider creative scope than had ever been previously possible. And Apple did much of this while I was still learning about the field, so I could make active comparisons of how much their new technology had helped me improve my work… and remove a few carcinogens from the process.

Xerox, IBM, Compaq, Microsoft, and HP couldn’t have done that, and wouldn’t have wanted to.

Congratulations, Apple. And thank you, again.


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