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Are Apple II series computers worthless?

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IMHO, it all came down to the Apple 2 computers being "not elegant" and Jobs wanted elegant things.

 

Exactly. It wasn't because he was an "asshole" (whether he was or not). It was because he had a vision. Whether that vision agreed with what everyone wanted or not was not his concern. He was shooting for his vision of greatness, elegance, the intersection of technology and liberal arts.

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Wellllll...

 

(I remember when iTunes came out -- I'd been using SoundJam MP and when I tried iTunes my reaction was basically "Wait, isn't this just...?" But I always found the sound quality of SoundJam MP subpar when compared to some of its competitors, especially Audion.)

 

Then I'm glad he packaged it right and bought it to market in a way that worked for me.

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At the time the II series was wired up and put into production it was elegant and simple. The design didn't leave much room to become more elegant and go faster.

 

The popular accelerator cards of the day were system within system replacements. They duplicated much of the workings of the computer and thus the computer became a terminal to the new card. That's a brute force method. And you can only take it one level deep.

 

The II was also a "victim" of the times. Lots of new things were being tried out. The II seemed to be successful alright. But to go in the direction Mr. Jobs wanted - well, that required a lot of rethinking and retooling. New ways of doing things.

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IMHO, it all came down to the Apple 2 computers being "not elegant" and Jobs wanted elegant things.

Perhaps, but I always liked the looks/design of the Apple II series. I considered them some of the most elegant (large, yes) systems available.

 

The original Macs... They are small and cute, and I like the look. The way I like the look of my Vectrex that predated it. ;-)

But I wouldn't (IMHO) call the Macs elegant...

 

Now, the GUI was fairly elegant from an ease of use area (hobbled by low mem and 1 floppy, but that wasn't the fault of the OS).

 

That being said, you could have (and they did "kind of" later) done that OS look/feel on the II series (especially with a ZIP chip).

 

The IIgs was an interesting step also, although it went to the BOX design that doesn't impress me.. (Which Apple would go back to with the Mac II line eventually..)

 

desiv

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Where I think it broke down for Jobs was the line between device and "computer"

 

The Apple 2 was a computer. IMHO, well made, well designed, and yes! Elegant in many ways. It was also quite practical and open and hackable too.

 

Jobs wanted to blend device and computer together. A very young kid can pick up an iPad and put it to use, just as a very old person can, and this is generally true of devices as opposed to computers.

 

I don't think Jobs saw a future in the Apple 2 either, and he was about the future. One thing Apple is known for, and that they have done successfully and fairly consistently, is they deliver great products, high margin, lots of value added, etc... At any given time, we have resources. We can spend them on things that have a little return, or a lot of return. Jobs was about the higher end of that curve. Interestingly, the Apple 2 did play to the higher end of that curve nearly the entire time. Not a cheap machine, but it also wasn't ever going to be that blend of tech and design that he was looking for.

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My biggest complaint with Macs is the RAM battery inside them. That goes poof and the whole system goes poof. Yes, it can be replaced, but you then have to reload the whole system, even if it is in the hard-drive. I junked a few Mac Classics because of that stupid battery, couldn't figure out why they kept dying until a local Macintosh fan told me why. I have a Mac-Plus I get out once in a blue moon and should probably check out later on. Now with an Apple II, you don't have to worry about that battery at least.

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Certainly none of those early Apples is "worthless". But there are a lot of young mindless people out there who don't know the value of anything older than 10 years (unless it's a car or a guitar) who wouldn't think twice about trashing an old 8-bit computer. But then they ditch smartphones and TVs older than 2 years so what do they know. If those old Apples became trendy, like vinyl record/'70s clothing trendy, then you see them scrambling to recover old gear and pretend to be educated about the value of those classic computers.

 

Yeh that. Ohh the hypocrisy if they take an interest!

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Where I think it broke down for Jobs was the line between device appliance and "computer"

 

Jobs stated many times in the early 80s that he thought a computer should be an appliance. At least once he said it should be as easy to use as a washing machine. That's part of why the Lisa was a closed and proprietary system. When that didn't work, he took over the Mac project to imposed many limitations there as well.

 

Regardless of whether his vision was altruistic or to maximize control and profits, or both, what he wanted was not possible in the 1980s. Neither technology or the consumer market was ready for an "appliance" computer.

 

Jobs didn't come up with the idea by himself. The concept for pad/tablet devices was first developed by Xerox PARC in the early 70s, the same development facility that developed the windows-based GUI, laser printers, and tons of other stuff. That's the same place Jobs paid to visit with a team from Apple, where they got a lot of the ideas that were implemented in the Lisa and Mac.

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A computer should be an appliance when tasked with repetitive things.

 

All of the 8-bit classics enjoyed today are footnotes in experimentation. Overshadowed and managed by marketing.

 

It's like google glass. It is not practical today, nor are we ready for it. But in the future, why not?

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I just got an Apple //e + monochrome monitor for free just a few weeks ago. How hard is it going to be to get a single or dualie disk drive? Then I gotta get da warez.

 

I finally have a computer I never got to enjoy in my own home as a kid. Only played with other kids' Apples.

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Jobs stated many times in the early 80s that he thought a computer should be an appliance. At least once he said it should be as easy to use as a washing machine.

 

And before him it was Ray Kassar. Ray's talk in early 1979 about wanting to do Atari computers in multiple colors for women was one of the primary tipping points for many of the employees that left or threatened to quit. It was also the vision behind having "smart peripherals," they wanted wanted a plug and play look instead of the mutlitude of card swapping/upgrades needed at the time, to try and make it more acceptible in a consumer market. To make it as "appliance" like as possible.

 

 

 

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Certainly none of those early Apples is "worthless". But there are a lot of young mindless people out there who don't know the value of anything older than 10 years (unless it's a car or a guitar) who wouldn't think twice about trashing an old 8-bit computer. But then they ditch smartphones and TVs older than 2 years so what do they know. If those old Apples became trendy, like vinyl record/'70s clothing trendy, then you see them scrambling to recover old gear and pretend to be educated about the value of those classic computers.

I think blatant ageism such as this is the reason why you don't see too many younger people into classic computing. Damned if you do and damned if you don't I guess.

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Ignore 'em. :)

 

Plenty of people into classic / retro who don't do that. The beauty of it is you can find your niche and have good times on fun machines. In the end, that is all it's about.

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I don't think it's blatant agism. It's an observation. If you work with young (20's) folks or go back to college, you'll see plenty of it. Sure, there are exceptions, as there are to everything.

The culture of young people doesn't imbue them with an innate appreciation of old things that is then (and only then) thwarted because of some grumpy old man's ageism.

Look how fast "hit" songs (and artists) come and go, compared to 1985. "Cool" is a faster moving target now than it ever has been.

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Worthless? They are one of the true pioneers of personal computing! High quality, hackable and very expandable - FAR from worthless.

 

On the other hand, in 1985 when the ST was released it could emulate the Mac faster than the Mac itself so you can draw your own conclusion there.

 

I have always wanted to own a IIgs - gorgeous design and with the spiritual successor to the mighty SID. Anyone want to sell me one? :)

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Look how fast "hit" songs (and artists) come and go, compared to 1985. "Cool" is a faster moving target now than it ever has been.

That's just because music was just so much better back then!!!

 

"You're too shy shy, hush hush... eye to eye..."

 

Man, they don't write em like that anymore......

 

desiv

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Some of the neighborhood kids are asking if I had computers when I was their age. Their ages are around 7-10. I believe now would be a good time to pull out the old Apple II and conduct some demos and gaming sessions.

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Some of the neighborhood kids are asking if I had computers when I was their age. Their ages are around 7-10. I believe now would be a good time to pull out the old Apple II and conduct some demos and gaming sessions.

History lesson time!

Show them what the first games were like while you are at it. Hunt the Wumpas or Star Trek... in BASIC. LOL

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It's a long time since I have seen a real Apple II. Wouldn't mind a IIe or Even a gs at some point but UK prices & rarity might make that a long while off

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Right now I have all my Apple IIe's packed away safely until I get some organizing done. On a bit of a vintage LCD handheld game/game & Watch kick right now since all you can now find are things for the iPhone. I do have my Applewin emulator on the PC for quick fixes though. :)

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Emulation is too good and too convenient these days to get most people interested in running on real hardware, and if they do, it's probably going to be a game console rather than a home-computer. It would be hard to seriously make a case for using old home computers for anything other than games. Apples in particular can easily be enjoyed through the virtual apple website.

 

I admit that I trashed my Amiga 1200, after I pulled the custom chips out. It had a bad keyboard. But I still have my 1200-based toaster/flyer editing system. It weighs a ton and really belongs in a museum someday. Is till have my Atari 1400XL board that I still haven't given away to anybody.

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