15 May 2016

I have only ever owned Apple computers

In the late 80’s my dad brought a MacPlus from work. Before that, I think I had played with a Minitel, but without being authorized to connect to the phone network.

The best thing about this computer is not shown in pictures: all the signatures molded inside the case!

Later, in the mid 90’s, my mom bought a Performa 6200. It came with a Daedalus Encounter licence. That wasn’t a great game… in the summer of 1996 I was sent to England for 2 weeks. There, Jeremy, my pen pal had a PC with Command and Conquer. He literally spent his days playing and I would not be surprised if he was still in that computer room today. (Can you tell I was jealous?) I think he had the worst experience when he later came to France and Daedalus Encounter was the only option I could offer.

My uncle Gerard was a computer science teacher. He was often trolling and said the Macintosh was not a great computer. I was young and proud so I bet against him that: by January 1st 2003, 5 years after our discussion, Apple would still be alive and thriving. The prize would be a Champagne Magnum.

Eventually, my dad bought us a Bondi Blue iMac. There was no game on it. Not even a decent mine sweeper. I started doubting me, my dad and our love for Macs.

However, there’s one thing that my dad also did when he bought the iMac: he took to an AOL subscription for 20 hours. Finally, it did not matter that I owned a Mac: for all I knew, on the web, everybody is a dog! The 20 hours vanished in a couple days. After a couple months of expensive over use, we switched to 100 hours and pretty soon after that, to some kind of unlimited connection time.

My honor was safe. The type of my computer was irrelevant and I, like tens of thousands of people, kept on buying Macs. I also drank a nice bottle of champagne with my friends…

Of course, Steve Jobs’ vision, the iPod success and later the iPhone are also certainly reasons why Apple is so rich these days… but in reality, it’s the web that saved Apple by making the underlying OS and hardware irrelevant.