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Grrrlz R the future of computerz!
February 27, 2001 1:59 PM   Subscribe

Grrrlz R the future of computerz! A suprisingly warm-hearted and atypically unguyish analysis of the “ridiculous” new iMac colours and what they represent for future computer use. If Apple blew it by not letting teenage boys play games, are they smart to make iMacs attractive to sensitive, design-focused people (including grrrlz) as so-called digital hubs? Or will the boyz shoot ’em up on Wintel while the grrrlz rip boy-band MP3s on groovy iMacs? (My claim: Bondi blue remains the bestest iMac shade ever. Discuss.)
posted by joeclark (17 comments total)

 
I agree. I personally don't lust for a "Flower Power" iMac in the same way that I want a Cube or Titanium 'book, but I see their business sense with this decision.

Arguing that Apple is simply ahead of the game (this time identifying girls as a viable market, not to mention Gen-Y as a whole) is getting old. Every time they release something, some people complain, others buy their products, and a lot is written about it.

But each time, Apple cashes in, grows as a company, and kickstarts a future trend.
posted by jragon at 4:19 PM on February 27, 2001


Mac users are so cute when they stamp their feet and yell "Shut up, it REALLY IS A COMPUTER!"

GeForce 3 cards will be out now, and it will take 8 months before programmers bring forth the games that exploit its capabilities. By then, PC users will have one. Anytime Mac makes an advance in its field, it instantly negates it by being a moron. Jobs is more on flair and pizazz than actual functionality...

Bill Gates probably lost a poker game to Steve Jobs, where the bet was "I win, you go away, if you win, then I'll let Apple stay alive for a few more years"
posted by Capn_Stuby at 5:56 PM on February 27, 2001


Functionality? My iMac DV was advertised as a machine for editing digital video. It does exactly that, with a simple clean interface. The salesman who sold me my Sony PC said it could do everything the iMac could, and after weeks of playing with the ridiculous, cartoony programs that came bundled with the thing, I've no idea where to begin.

The new iMacs are being sold as rip/burn tools for the dorm set, and if my experience with iTunes is any indication, that's exactly what they'll do. Whereas the Sony's software locks you into Sony's preposterous proprietary MP3 format.

If I want to get something done, I turn on my Macs. If I want to blow something up, I turn on my PC. While I can't stand the new iMacs, it's a smart move - wring the last drops out of the design, then dump it for something new next year.
posted by lileks at 7:54 PM on February 27, 2001


I think the iMac successors are supposed to be announced at Macworld NY in July. I certainly hope they are; it would be devistating to Apple if the iMac stays around in its current form factor for another entire year.
posted by aaron at 11:36 PM on February 27, 2001


I like Apple. I like the fact that they force other parties to compete, and I like the fact that they (generally) incorporate excellent form with function. I don't use them, because I can't afford them and/or upgrade them satisfactorily.

But I think games are important, and if girls aren't playing computer games, as the evidence overwhelmingly shows that they are not, then I feel that they are missing out on an important rite of passage. In general, people become interested in things through games, and computer games is usually the way that most people become interested in how computers work, and what you can do with them, and then on into finding a career in the industry.

Of course, the gaming industry, although relatively new compared to other forms of entertainment, is incredibly old-fashioned in some of its views (read "incredibly sexist.") So it's no real surprise that women aren't playing these games. I don't think it's because they inately don't enjoy them, but because the industry is so hostile towards them.

Bondi blue - yup.
posted by lucien at 1:14 AM on February 28, 2001


You know, as a long-time Mac user I'd never buy one of the new iMac designs. But there's a guy at the office who has, and I am not making this up, an actual Lava Lamp on his desk. He can't wait to get a Flower Power machine for home. Apparently, it will fit right in with his decor, a fact I find slightly frightening, but there you have it. In fact, we recently got a bunch of various Macs for testing the Mac version of our product, and many of our testers (none of whom had any Mac experience before we brought in the machines) are now talking about getting an iMac for home. Most of them think the new designs are very attractive, and they are constantly amazed at how easy it is to do some things on the Mac.

When the iMac first came out, the Mac faithful (and industry pundits) pooh-poohed it. But it sold like gangbusters. I don't personally think the new designs are very attractive, but then, I'm not the target audience for the machine. None of us really are. So I'm not going to dismiss its sales potential based on my own aesthetic sense.
posted by kindall at 1:25 AM on February 28, 2001


Computer styles? I don't want to know what color my computer is -- I want to use it, not see it, and the smaller and less obtrusive it is, the better it is.

What I really want is a completely chameleonic computer that reveals itself only when I whistle for it.
posted by pracowity at 3:41 AM on February 28, 2001


but that's exactly the point. the target audience do want to know what colour their imac is, and how it is going to fit with their lifestyle. 3d gamers aren't the core target (you'd be surprised to know there aren't that many in comparison to eminem fans et al...)
posted by afro at 6:53 AM on February 28, 2001


I'm not impressed with the new color choices for the iMacs but I have a feeling they were targeted at the Japanese consumer primarily. I think these new colors will still probably sell well in the US. Apple will expand their offerings at MacWorld NY and use sales data to react to consumers.
posted by ooklah at 8:27 AM on February 28, 2001


But I think games are important, and if girls aren't playing computer games, as the evidence overwhelmingly shows that they are not, then I feel that they are missing out on an important rite of passage.

Computer games are a rite of passage?

Could we try not to stray into the world of obscene ridiculousness?
posted by Dreama at 10:34 AM on February 28, 2001


...computer games is usually the way that most people become interested in how computers work, and what you can do with them, and then on into finding a career in the industry.

Almost anyone who gets involved with computers when they're young ends up playing some games. But I wouldn't think that the intellect-dulling and creativity-stifling effects of extensive game playing would be conducive to developing the sort of curiosity required to actually take an interest in how computers work.
posted by kindall at 12:17 PM on February 28, 2001


kindall, while the actual games themselves may not drive the urge to learn more about computers, getting the damn things to work well certainly can.

And it was video games that attracted me to computers. We had an Intellivision when I was but a lad, and I started designing games (on paper) before I knew how to

10 ? "Robbie Is Super-Cool!"
20 GOTO 10

on the K-Mart ataris.
posted by cCranium at 12:43 PM on February 28, 2001


Yeah, I used to write BASIC programs that with the PCs at school when I was 12. About the same level of program complexity and artistic creativity too.
posted by Loudmax at 2:16 PM on February 28, 2001


The year of computer programming I did in high school was a direct result of playing computer games; I wanted to make some computer games of my own. But the fact that I quit after a year might be evidence against that theory...
posted by Jeanne at 3:23 PM on February 28, 2001


Meh. Some people buy computers to complement their decor, their image, their immediate hankerings for something to tinker with. Some people are power users. Some people are computer professionals. Some people are students on a budget. Some people value style over substance.

There's a computer for each of these people, and Apple is making damn sure of it. People don't need reasons why they should or shouldn't buy this or that computer. If someone would rather dump their money into a Flower-Power iMac than into a plain-jane mid-tower PC, then they're allowed to, and that's all there is to it.
posted by Succa at 5:55 PM on February 28, 2001


The new amendment to the Constitution says otherwise.
posted by Capn_Stuby at 12:31 AM on March 1, 2001


Dreama:

"Could we try not to stray into the world of obscene ridiculousness?"

I welcome criticism of any of my viewpoints. I welcome you to put a little constructive thought into yours at this point in time, not because I'm offended, but because without it I find it impossible to respond to your comment unless I respond in kind, something I don't wish to do.

In doing so please consider my comment in context. No, I did not state at any time that I consider "computer games are a rite of passage" per se as your out-take would seem to suggest.
posted by lucien at 3:11 AM on March 2, 2001


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