MacWorld Expo 2004: the 20th anniversary Mac

Before continuing the story of the PowerBook and iBook, I suggest to take a little journey back in time to visit January 6, 2004, in the conference center, Moscone Center, at the opening of the MacWorld 2004. Remember what the stevenote? This word is the English language called the speech of Steve jobs at the opening of the WWDC and MacWorld Expo, it appeared in 1997 or 1998. And was forgotten in 2012 or 2013. Forgotten and all that was associated with that word: waiting for a miracle, rumours and gossip, almost a war on the forums. Don’t know, was the world better or worse – but he was different. Rumors still have not gone away, but a flight of fancy in them…

In order to talk about this event, I have synchronized (brought to the same point in time) series about PowerBook and iBook. At the opening of MacWorld Expo 2004 about them not a word was said. But, for reasons which I will not reveal, I know that MacWorld Expo is more than most of the other “big Apple events” – although I have not been on it myself.

And a reason to talk about this MacWorld is, and it is valid: for 20 years before her January 24, 1984, Apple announced the first Macintosh. From the very first day of existence of this platform, she predicted the imminent and ignominious death. If you are not aware, the platform is still there… And apparently still will live.

The speech of Steve was supposed to start at 9 am Pacific time. But Steve did not suffer punctuality. Like all poets, he lived outside of time…

Why 2004 was not like 1984

The enthusiastic roar of the crowd and the sounds of applause, Steve appeared on the scene in 8:59:48. 12 seconds before the appointed time! It was so unusual that the lights and other stagehands did not realize that “time”.

Steve said that in the hall gathered 60 thousand people (about it was), and that he was happy about that. The show started at 9:03:36. With going in January 1984. Computer mouse was more scared than elephants and women are afraid of real mice. Many were sure that regular users never learn to use it. For example, JEF Raskin, for which the number of buttons the mouse has been reduced to one. It is because of this.

The fears proved unfounded, as we know. “JEF Raskin of Macintosh” called the Canon Cat without a mouse, but it did not understand, but the mouse used incredibly fast and forever.

2004 was not like 1984: a delight to the innovations of technology have lost the sharpness was not so unruly and wild. For 20 years, and Apple, and those who belonged to the production company with interest and sympathy, too well know each other. Had its UPS and downs, and a vertical take-off of the company for capitalization of a trillion dollars has already begun, but about it nobody knew.

The movie “1984”, as always, was great. 20 years later, the Macintosh was still alive, moreover: never before it was not so good and attractive.

But iron is the flesh, without the soul, the flesh is dead. The soul of the computer is the operating system. And the value of the operating system (or “computer platform”) is determined by their programs.

About the soul…

Mac OS 10.0 – 10.1 was a springboard for even a stranger to the Apple site.

Now Apple had two operating systems – and between them there was a war. A new system was necessary, it knew almost everything, but she was clumsy and uncomfortable, it gave way not only to obsolete the classic system, but even – horror of horrors – she lost to the system from another-enemy number one.

The front line of this war has now passed through every new Mac, each of them installs both Windows and Mac OS X this war was lost, hopelessly and obvious.

Mac OS 10.2 “Jaguar” is also inferior to the “classics,” and also, frankly, not impressive. It at least could be used to work – but “classic” was still there, in the distance reboot. The main motive of Mac OS 10.2 was “to catch up with the classics,” and so the war is not won.

Mac OS 10.3 “Panther” was the first version of the new system, broke with this practice. And a miracle happened (though not immediately)…

And on 6 January 2004, at the opening of MacWorld Expo, Steve, as if incidentally and accidentally, announced that Microsoft has now borrows from Mac OS 10.3 good decisions. Modestly and almost imperceptibly – but he heard it. And he invited the head of the Microsoft Macintosh Business Unit (the largest in the world ovskogo a Mac developer).

“The soul is obliged to work” – and calling the soul of your computer’s operating system, we cannot forget about the software. The world’s best operating system without them is doomed.

Programs for Mac OS X

One of the main reasons of disappointment in the new system in its first years it was terrible quality most of them. CorelDraw for Mac OS X to use was impossible. Not much better was AppleWorks for Mac OS X (not to be confused with AppleWorks for the Apple II, the new AppleWorks to eliminate Claris was called ClarisWorks, AppleWorks was another GS, that is three completely different program called AppleWorks).

But Microsoft Office for Mac OS X… was great. The complex of office programs for the Mac, in my opinion (and only my) opinion, not only not inferior to the “native” version for Windows, but just better. . Many new items have been implemented it earlier than office for Windows – it’s a fact.

In addition to MS Office, was presented to Final Cut Express 2 (optimized for Panther and the G5), and another set of programs, which Steve called “the Office for all of you for the rest of your lives”, which we will talk later.

By 2004, the number of programs for Mac OS X, according to Steve jobs, has exceeded 10 000. Some of them are already gone (CorelDraw for example), some have better (AppleWorks, but after leaving the Claris team that developed ClarisWorks just before turning the Apple, NeXT Apple, the program was slowly dying away), a few others…

New programs, especially originally written for Mac OS X, Cocoa, was new and mysterious to users, but more than attractive, world. When I heard about the 10,000 programs that I was proud of: in 2004, the world market software for Mac OS X, more or less successfully sold 4 of my program, especially one of them. 0.04% of Mac ovskih programs in the world!!!

The system was no longer doomed. As of January 2004, on the new Apple site (Mac OS X) migrated 9.3 million users. 40% of the total number of Mac devices users. The migration continued in the coming months was expected that their number will exceed 10 million.

Specifics (hardware and services)

Steve talked about the G5, as Apple called the PowerPC 970. The processor was very good, that’s just absolutely not good for portable devices: consume unacceptably much energy and provide too much heat. In his time at G4 had the same problems, but they are outdated.

But the main characters of this part of speech was the specific realization of creative thoughts of engineers and designers Apple, list them in alphabetical order: iPod, iTunes Music Store, the Xserve and Xserve RAID. All of these entities are not new, they all struggled for recognition and success… But you’ll never guess what he started (what he considered more important, apparently).

The main theme

The main topic was the Xserve and Xserve G5. On this front was achieved the incredible success that it would be very nice, and most importantly – incredibly prestigious, develop and grow, and monetize.

Virginia Tech, technical University, it took a supercomputer. To purchase it would be good (if in 1976 there was already a computer class Apple I, Apple would not exist – Steve said), they were sold – but not the poorest of the University of money is not.

Then they decided to build a supercomputer (cluster) themselves. Even more interesting: on this practice for the best students in VT could only dream of. And now the creative team is carefully studied the proposals from Sparc, AMD, Intel, and others, trying to squeeze the cluster available budget while PowerMac G5, quite by accident, did not fall into their field of vision. Who would have thought – it all came together!

The result was a BigMac. Apple interested buyer who ordered the company from 1,100 of these Macs… Enthusiasts helped. The result exceeded expectations.

The world’s first performance supercomputer cost $ 350 million, the second $ 200 million. BigMac took third place in this list, he was worth $ 5.2 million. That is that, now, anyone, for 5-6 million dollars, are able to build your own supercomputer?

So… in the Apple was created the cluster group, the developers of Xserve and Xserve RAID increased the financing on the Apple website appeared Configurator clusters…

Steve announced Xserve G5 (1 CPU variant 2 999, 2-socket, 3 999, while for “cluster 2-CPU” option – 2 $ 999).

The result of these efforts was several hundred “Apple” clusters of tens and hundreds of Xserve, the first hundred supercomputers none of them got…

This we now know that this didn’t work out. Most likely, hope not too serious topic in which it was necessary to invest an order of magnitude or two more than Apple could afford.

Other topics

The second topic was the iTunes Music Store. He had fantastic success. Steve announced some novelties that had to do with iTMS, but the main thing was to report within pointless venture wonderful achievements.

70% of the global music market with MP3, about two million songs sold in a week, an unnamed buyer purchased (lump sum) songs 29 $ 500.

A meaningless venture called the iTunes Music Store one of the reviewers, predicting this store is moderate and temporary success within 5% of the market. A little mistake.

The third theme was the complex of programs iLife 4… the “office for life”…

The fourth topic was the iPod. Steve announced the iPod mini, and again reported on the progress of this hopeless (as did smart and authoritative people) platform: 730 thousand units were sold only in December 2003, all of them sold more than 2 million… the iPod is an MP3 player in the world.

To discuss the history of Apple you can in our Telegram chat.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *