Got your attention?
All right, then let me start.
Actually, before I start, let me set the record straight, just in case some Jobs-nuts out there were already playing with the trigger of their reply button:
No matter how much you think you can vouch for your loyalty to King Jobs and his court of Cupertino, no matter how much you think you’ve earned your right to sit with the Knights of the Golden Apple, no matter how intimately attached to your Powerbook you are… Thou doth not even come close to my level of Macitude, OK? Just don’t try.
I learned to draw on MacPaint with a 512k before I knew how to hold a pencil, I was making killer games on Hypercard when you were still playing Mario Bros. on your brother’s NES and I had written enough useless Mac-PC flamewar postings on Usenet to fill a newsgroup within the first year of my first “Internet” account (yea, I know that’s pretty pathetic… but remember we are talking about a faraway time where nobody had yet figured what to do with this internet thing beside trolling and browsing for porn… not that anybody has, ever since). The total value of all the Apple equipment I’ve bought, had my employer buy, or stollen from heavily-guarded warehouses at great risk for my life, would likely pay off the debt of a small African country, and short of getting a position as Steve’s personal poolboy, I’ve been involved in about every aspect of the Mac-related development industry you could think of.
So before you start yelling at me for disparagingly commenting on your beloved brand and tell me how much you really like your iMac, just make sure we are on the same ground, ok?
Now of course, maybe I’m just a very unlucky person who happen to have bought the only two products coming from Apple this past year, ridden with defects and design flaws. Maybe I am an incredibly unlucky person and the models I bought belonged to a minority of factory defects, in no way representative of the overall high quality of their products.
Or maybe, just maybe, most of the products released by Apple these last few years are low-quality, margin-gnawing, under-tested pieces of crap, thinly disguised under [admittedly very pretty] professional designs.
Now, these are the kind of stats we won’t ever see unless somebody breaks into Steve’s office safe, but a little bird tells me these defects occur a bit more frequently than you are entitled to expect from devices paid well over market price. Actually, my little bird has a lot of friends who have purchased either an iPod or a Powerbook G4 in the last year or so, and a quick roundup on their level of satisfaction with their machines indicated that the group of those experiencing huge white blotch on their laptop LCD or comatose battery life on their nearly-new iPod far outnumbered the happy-customer group. call that a coincidence, but I was barely surprised when my own equipment started failing in the announced fashion after less than 6 months of intensive-though-careful use.
And don’t tell me this is no big deal, “as Apple will magnanimously accept to take care of these small impediments, at no charge for me”, and return a functioning unit, “in less than 2 weeks”… Do you think I paid such an inflated price for a laptop, just in order to spend a day backing up its data, figuring how to mail it in one piece and part with my main work instrument for a period of 15 freaking days?!? All that because Apple did not deem useful to do basic testing on their products and have been selling entire series of defective products ?!?
Even though my quasi-religious loyalty to the brand is waaay long gone (nothing like an internship somewhere 30 minutes south of San Francisco to help you bury that kind of pre-adolescent infatuation) and work has long been switched half off the mac (ever since the difficultly defensible years of MacOS 8-9), using OS X had given me a lot of hope for the future. And I was happy to have a decent alternative to that increasingly bug-ridden excuse of an OS, 90% of the planet insist on subjecting themselves through.
But right now, I really do not see how I could ever buy another piece of Apple hardware any time soon. I doubt I am the only one. And somehow I got the feeling Steve doesn’t really give a damn: he’s much too busy selling iPods and iTunes tracks to my grandma and my little brother, and he’s probably right considering the cash opportunities in either market.
Let’s seriously hope for some hardware overture (“overture”, you know, as in “intel version” or, gasp “mac-compatible clone”) before Apple kills its OS for good along with its hardware…
Update: When I told you I’m not alone…
Update 2: And the fun only begins… what do you know… this morning, the super-cool magnetic latch on my PB just died… meaning that, on top of having white blotches all over the screen, a semi-faulty charger and a frame unexplainably skewed, I am now unable to properly close my laptop… I feel like killing somebody.