The Lite Side

Apple Unveils Vowel-Mac Strategy

- 2002.04.30

CUPERTINO: Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced a new five-point strategy for winning back the market from the Windows-dominated world. With the addition of the new "education" eMac, Jobs revealed the company's new tactic: having a Mac for every vowel in the alphabet.

"Next week, we'll announce the new aMac," said Jobs. "It's strictly for accountants. Each computer comes with two processors, two hard drives, two ethernet cards, and two modems. You can automate your, uh, backups with ease. " Aimed at the burgeoning Chapter 11 audit market, the aMac is expected to sell well in the short term but face challenges later on as the pool of available accountants shrinks.

"This fall we plan to introduce a new stripped-down computer for computer geeks," continued Jobs. "The new um-Mac incorporates everything a geek asks for: no hard drive (because ours is too small), no video out (because our graphics suck), and no modem (because no geek would use a modem)." It also comes with 72 RAM slots and some wires hanging out the back that plug into something. The new device deviates slightly from the practice of naming computers with a lower-case single vowel because it fits in better with geek culture, said Jobs. "When's the last time you heard a geek say 'Mac' without saying 'um' in front of it?"

In addition, the um-Mac comes with a Pentium II motherboard from some flea market Contra Costa County (because Marin County doesn't allow flea markets). Even more enticing to the geek, the motherboard just "absolutely will not fit in the um-Mac's case, although you will often fool yourself into thinking it will." Geeks love the sort of challenge that would drive most of us berserk, said Jobs.

The oMac would supposedly finish the product line, but Jobs wasn't telling. "We'll just have to wait and see about that. If people like the other letters, we might do some more."

And what about the yMac?

"Sometimes you have to know when to quit," said Jobs, "but as far as the yMac is concerned: yNot?"

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