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From: l...@qumix.UUCP (Leonard Labar)
Newsgroups: fa.info-mac,net.micro.mac
Subject: Is the Mac becoming obsolete?
Message-ID: <340@qumix.UUCP>
Date: Sun, 17-Feb-85 20:26:57 EST
Article-I.D.: qumix.340
Posted: Sun Feb 17 20:26:57 1985
Date-Received: Mon, 18-Feb-85 01:42:43 EST
Distribution: net
Organization: Qume Corp., San Jose, CA
Lines: 14

The following views expressed are my own and do not necessarily make
sense.

Since I bought my skinny, colorless mac a lot of new stuff has been
coming out or rumored to be coming.  Now it seems, the going price for
my used mac is slightly less than $1200 if I believe the classifieds.
Now my question is this, does anyone have advice on whether we should
sell our macs, upgrade (throw good money after bad), or wait till the
competition catches up and then take more of a loss by selling then, or
love it and keep it as it is.  I prefer the last but I'm concerned.  It
seems that this GEM based stuff I hear about is slightly inferior to
what the mac runs.  However, I haven't seen the commodore amiga yet or
the atari one.  Spare me the highly detailed technical stuff but what
do the pros and cons look like on the balance sheet?

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From: l...@qumix.UUCP (Leonard Labar)
Newsgroups: net.micro.mac
Subject: Response summary to "Is the Mac becoming obsolete?"
Message-ID: <358@qumix.UUCP>
Date: Fri, 22-Feb-85 04:21:54 EST
Article-I.D.: qumix.358
Posted: Fri Feb 22 04:21:54 1985
Date-Received: Fri, 22-Feb-85 14:34:22 EST
Distribution: net
Organization: Qume Corp., San Jose, CA
Lines: 27

Since some of you requested feedback I am posting my interpretation of
the responses to my earlier message.  First of all, about 30 or so
self-appointed watchdogs barked rather loudly at my posting directly to
fa.info-mac.  Hence the answer to that question "why two mac nets?"
became obvious.  Fa means "from arpanet".  This net was created out of
a need to express what was not getting through on fa.info-mac.  That
net is supposedly moderated now, predictions are that this one would be
also.

Secondly, it seems the current standardization on formats is binhex
version 4.  Tohex and fromhex are obsolete by default.  There is other
stuff floating around but it doesn't seem popular yet.

Thirdly, the Mac is not obsolete YET.  The latest article I read shows
both the Atari and Commodore pc's using 68000's.  The rationale for
keeping a Mac currently is that they will be 6-12 months away from
getting any decent software on the market (These opinions don't
neccessarily reflect those of my employer or myself during saner
moments).  HOWEVER, assuming one should take a gamble and decide to
keep one's Mac:  1. I would recommend doing the Jan. '85 Dr. Dobbs
upgrade to 512k for $200.  2. Getting the internal hard disk upgrade
known as turbo-mac.  3.  If the price ever drops, buying a copy of
"Jazz".  THAT should prolong its' life for another year if you can
stand to be without color.  I've heard those x-rays aren't too good on
the eyes anyway.  When someone comes out with a 32032 based machine
with decent software to run on it you can kiss all these products
goodbye.  If I were IBM I would be thinking of it.    

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From: r...@Glacier.ARPA (Brian Reid)
Newsgroups: net.micro.mac
Subject: obsolete? so what. Obsolete computers sell.
Message-ID: <4150@Glacier.ARPA>
Date: Sat, 23-Feb-85 23:04:56 EST
Article-I.D.: Glacier.4150
Posted: Sat Feb 23 23:04:56 1985
Date-Received: Sun, 24-Feb-85 14:31:47 EST
Distribution: net
Organization: Stanford University, Computer Systems Lab
Lines: 16

The IBM PC was obsolete the day it was announced, but that didn't prevent
IBM from selling millions of them. The Mac will in some sense be obsolete in
a year or two, but so what? So what that the Mac has about the same
functionality as the Xerox Alto had in 1976? That doesn't change its value.

The point is, the Mac does what it does very well, it does it cheaply, it
generates lots of nice software (have you seen Quartet or ConcertWare?),
and lots of people have them. I don't want color; if you gave me a color
computer I would sell it and buy a black and white version.

I should point out that I also own a 1964 Chevrolet pickup truck. While
it is terribly obsolete, somebody borrows it from me almost every weekend
because it outperforms their BMW at certain tasks.
-- 
	Brian Reid	decwrl!glacier!reid
	Stanford	r...@SU-Glacier.ARPA

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From: r...@Glacier.ARPA
Newsgroups: net.micro.mac
Subject: obsolescence: what gives Mac its value?
Message-ID: <4295@Glacier.ARPA>
Date: Tue, 26-Feb-85 18:14:30 EST
Article-I.D.: Glacier.4295
Posted: Tue Feb 26 18:14:30 1985
Date-Received: Wed, 27-Feb-85 09:45:14 EST
Distribution: net
Organization: Stanford University, Computer Systems Lab
Lines: 64

Anybody who thinks that the presence of this or that wonderful new computer
is going to seriously impact the value of a Mac does not understand where
that value comes from.

I know of at least 10 companies that make and sell small personal
computers that are better than the Mac. Not very many of them are as cheap
as the Mac, but some are. I won't bore you with details, but even though
they are somehow better than the Mac--a faster processor or a multitasking
operating system or a bigger screen and/or color, or a custom IC for handling
graphics, better communication capabilities, or what have you--the Mac still
has more value. Furthermore, the Mac will continue to have that value long
after most of those companies have gone the way of all flash. There was one
company right here in Silicon Valley, whose name I can't remember right now,
that brought out a computer quite like the Amiga about a year ago. It had
custom VLSI chips for handling color graphics, it had such advanced graphics
capabilities that you could almost do color animation on it, and it had a
very promising operating system. As far as I know the company is now out of
business, and I have never known anybody who bought one of those computers,
because although it was wonderful it was not valuable.

The Mac is valuable because it is a very good engineering compromise. There
are a thousand variables in the design and marketing of a computer, and the
computer company must make decisions about all of them. If the computer is
too good it will be too expensive and nobody will buy it and therefore
nobody will write software for it. If the computer is too crummy nobody will
be able to write software for it. If the operating system is too advanced
nobody will understand how to use it; if the operating system is too moronic
nobody will want to use it. And so forth.

Apple has done a magnificent job of engineering a computer to fit right
smack squarely into the middle of current low-cost high-technology demand,
of writing an operating system for that computer that gets most of the
compromises right, of designing a network interface for it that does the
right things (more or less) and getting it out on time, of coordinating
efforts by 3rd-party software houses, OEM peripheral vendors, textbook
writers, retail stores, graphic designers, college professors, and so forth.

I am quite confident that on February 26, 1990, five years from today, I
will still be getting useful work done on my Macintosh, and that there will
still be reasons why I am reluctant to switch from it to the then-favorite
computer. I am equally confident that on February 26, 1995, ten years from
today, that there will be quite a number of people worldwide who are still
getting useful work done with their Macintoshes. I probably will have moved
up by then.

This is why I am not worried about this or that new computer having much
impact on the value of my Mac. While the Mac is not perfect, not
state-of-the-art, not as good as it could have been, it probably would not
have been as successful if it had been better. The Mac has succeeded in
raising the consciousnesses of a whole generation of Americans about what
computers can do; until the Mac came along, most people thought that the IBM
PC was a good computer. Now they know better. If the Mac had been 40%
"better", or 50% "better", it might not have had the impact that it has had,
and therefore it might have been a failure even though it was "better".

If you read the history of computer design and computer sales and computer
company failures, you will see this happening over and over and over again.
The best computers are not the ones that are most technologically advanced,
they are the ones that are suffiently advanced to be worth switching to, but
not so advanced as to be cut off from the (changing) mainstream of
technology.
-- 
	Brian Reid	decwrl!glacier!reid
	Stanford	r...@SU-Glacier.ARPA