(Welcome to the World of Endless Reruns! Two decades ago, As the Apple Turns (AtAT) was a daily web-based soap opera obsessively following the melodramatic ins and outs of all things Apple. Now the archives are broadcasting in syndication, so each day you can see what life was like 20 years ago when Apple was still the underdog, all in not-so-fabulous RetroVision™!)

TV-PGDecember 9, 1999: It just wouldn't feel like Christmastime without an Imatec press release to spread a bit of holiday cheer. Meanwhile, Apple's stock gives way, but money guy Fred Anderson hints at Big Things To Come, and is there some bizarre cosmic connection between airport luck and AirPort performance?...
There was no new episode broadcast on December 11, 1999, so we're still showing you the last episode broadcast before then. (December 9, 1999)
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'Tis The Season For PR (12/9/99)

It's the holiday season, and everyone's getting into the spirit. That one perpetually bubbly coworker of yours is dressing in red and green every day and singing "Jingle Bells" all day long. The house down the block has so many lights on the yard its raw candlepower per square yardage officially qualifies it as a landing strip. The malls are echoing with the soothing holiday screams of mothers clubbing each other into bloody messes as they duke it out for the last Pokémon Yellow cartridge. It all seems perfect, and yet, even with all this holiday cheer, we couldn't help but feel that something was missing. And we didn't know what it was until it arrived; all we wanted for Christmas was an Imatec press release, and now we've got it. AtAT sends big holiday thanks to faithful viewers fv jim and Neil Cohen for making our season complete.

Yup, our buddy Hanoch "Oh my god, it's December and I haven't issued a press release yet" Shalit is back to his old tricks; while the latest release hasn't yet been posted to his cheesy web site, it's available via CNET. This time he's pointing out how Apple "continues to reduce the market exposure of their ColorSync product because of Imatec's patent lawsuit." Now that's an event worthy of a press release if ever we saw one! ColorSync 3.0 never had an "official launch" and it's only available as part of the Mac OS 9 retail package-- is that because of the lawsuit, as Hanoch claims, or is it Apple's strategy to boost sales of Mac OS 9 in the graphic design industry, paving the way for Mac OS X? Heck, has anyone even tried running ColorSync 3.0 under earlier versions of the Mac OS? For all we know, it may require Mac OS 9 to run properly. Just another case of speculation-as-press-release. (Not that Hanoch's wrong, mind you-- it's just the sheer absurdity of it all that makes us giggle.)

Hey, Hanoch, in the spirit of the season, here's an idea for your next one: "Today Hanoch Shalit was picking lint out of his navel when it dawned on him that Steve Jobs often wears all-black or all-white turtlenecks when addressing the public. Shalit immediately took this as a sign that Apple is downplaying ColorSync because of Imatec's scary lawsuit. And while Shalit was trying to dig his stuck English muffin out of the toaster with a metal fork, it also occurred to him that Apple's elimination of the multicolored Apple logo is obviously yet another indication that the company is scared to death that they'll lose the lawsuit and have to shell out a few billion dollars to some two-bit extortionist." Merry Christmas, Hanoch-- that one's on us.

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Make Like A Banana &... (12/9/99)

You knew it couldn't last forever, right? Apple's stock just kept going up and up, hitting a new all-time closing high every day-- until a couple of days ago. After peaking at 118 earlier in the week, AAPL lost nearly 8 points on Wednesday, and almost 5 more in Thursday's trading session. Is it the beginning of the end, or just a "buying opportunity"?

Well, don't head out on the ledge just yet, because no less an authority than Apple's head money dude Fred Anderson is predicting big things for Apple's stock. We don't subscribe to TheStreet.com, so we can't read the relevant article for ourselves; instead, we rely on MacNN to slip us the juiciest details. Apparently Fred and the boys are "hinting at an impending stock split"-- something that hasn't happened to Apple since 1987. And beyond that, Fred reportedly told an investment bank fund manager to expect "a price of 200 per share and another stock split next year." Does that sound nuts to you? Well, when AAPL was hovering around 30 a year ago, would you have believed it'd be well over 100 today? Fred's got reason to crow. And hopefully he won't have to eat that crow later.

By the way, that's not all Fred told that fund manager. He also said that Apple will beat Credit Suisse First Boston's Q1 estimate of an 88-cent-per-share profit. Holy Repeat Street-Beating Performance, Batman! Something to keep in mind when we dredge out our quarterly Beat The Analysts contest in a couple of weeks... (Update: at broadcast time, AAPL had rebounded to over 108... and then dropped to 103. D'oh!)

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Stranded At O'Hare (12/9/99)

How's your luck in airports? Are you one of those lucky people who's never had a flight canceled, never lost a bag, and thrives on reheated airport food and the scintillating conversation of beaming individuals handing out religious pamphlets? Or perhaps you've got "Charlie Brown" karma when it comes to airports-- your flights are always delayed, your luggage always winds up in Bermuda (except when you fly to Bermuda, in which case it ends up in Zagreb), and security always insists on a body cavity search because you've got "beady eyes." Whatever. We're just curious, because we're wondering if there's a correlation between airport luck and AirPort luck.

Now, while the AtAT staff's had more than a few flights canceled, we've never had a truly nightmarish time at the airport-- our luggage always shows up, and we've yet to lose a limb in a horrifying baggage carousel accident. And our AirPort experience has been completely flawless; ten minutes of set-up, and the AtAT iBook was wirelessed and ready to go. We can surf the net from anywhere in the studios with ease, at full cable modem speeds. That's why we're not surprised to see that, according to MacCentral, Business Week magazine has named Apple's wireless networking system one of the year's most innovative products. When it works, it's absolutely marvelous.

When it doesn't work, well, you're Ted Landau of MacFixit fame. Sure, others have had problems too, but Ted isn't just the guy who runs the best Mac troubleshooting site on the 'net; he's also the author of one of the most famous books about Mac repair: Sad Macs, Bombs, and Other Disasters. If we had to pick one guy who Knows What He's Doing™ around Macs, it'd be Ted. It really takes a bad experience for him to tell people not to buy something, so when we read his terrifying account of having not one, but two AirPort Base Stations flake out on him, we had to wonder. This is where the airport/AirPort correlation bit comes in: we seem to recall that Ted had a really awful flight experience getting to the last Macworld Expo. Could there be some kind of profound karmic connection?

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Previously, on As the Apple Turns...

TV-PGDecember 8, 1999: Strike a blow against corporate interface oppression-- join the tens of thousands of users who have kicked "Brushed Metal" off their Macs. Meanwhile, Microsoft's latest innovations in the world of streaming and desktop video may seem eerily familiar, and IBM finally releases ViaVoice for the Mac, but you'd better have a new and hefty Mac to meet the system requirements...

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