The Mac’s 25th Anniversary — Founder’s Column, Part 1

When I started this site over fourteen years ago in 1995 with the help of my friend Jon Thompson and the blessing of Rumors’ “Godfather” Ethan Allen, it was because I had friends that were working at Apple and elsewhere who knew why the company was not only going to survive, but to succeed beyond the wildest dreams of anyone at the time. I had to share that knowledge with the world and the vision that I had of Apple’s future was so different from what we were seeing in the press back then that I simply could not let the world continue to fail to see just how wrong they were.

From there, when so many of us in the Mac community thought we might be coming to the end of Apple’s history…..the really big chapters of the Apple story began to be written. The promise that had been bottled up inside this special machine for over a decade truly began to be realized, and we were there to witness it — often before anyone else did outside of the walls of Infinite Loop.

Just to list a few of the rumors that we broke, many of them exclusively….and in some cases, were the only sites or press outlets to report on them before they were announced:

*The resignation of CEO Gil Amelio & the return to the captain’s chair by Steve Jobs (10 hours before it happened & everyone scoffed; we were the ONLY ones to report this before it happened)
*The buyout of PowerComputing by Apple and the end of Mac cloning
*Microsoft’s $150 Million AAPL stock purchase and associated deal to continue making Internet Explorer/Office for Mac
*The decision to acquire NeXT and OpenStep/NeXTStep over BeOS, the shift in strategy that transformed Rhapsody into Mac OS X (“Carbon/Darwin”)
*Fact that Apple was continuing to maintain/develop Intel build of Mac OS X all along — Project “Star Trek: The Next Generation”
*The iMac, iBook, G4 Cube, Xserve and PowerMac G5
*The iPod and iPhone

It’s a far from complete list, but we’re not interested in bragging or counting the numbers; quite the opposite, while we’ve been captivated by memories and this anniversary as of late….we are far more interested in the present and the future — as we have always been.

At the end of Welcome to Mac, which we will be reviewing and discussing in more depth in the coming days, the various interviewees are asked about Apple’s future and what it might mean if Steve Jobs left the company for some reason….a particularly salient and timely question, given current circumstances.

Virtually all of the interviewees gave the more or less expected answer: that Steve *is* Apple, that without him the company might well be doomed to return to the same fatal flaws that crippled it before Steve’s return. Particularly, as our old friend Guy Kawasaki pointed out, if the person that succeeds him tries to go around being “visionary” and trying to be the “new Steve.”

Although Guy does make an insightful point there, it’s no secret that we don’t agree with this prevailing wisdom that Steve is inseparable from the successes that he has overseen and participated in.

Having borne witness to Apple’s history, and most importantly, having witnessed it through the eyes and reports of our sources who are largely employees of the company…..we know that the true heart of Apple’s success has been and will continue to be those employees.

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  • david shortle

    Good to see macosrumours back on the news treadmill. Looking forward to seeing new news about all things Apple.