Grasping At Straws (1/10/00)
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Speaking of comparing Apple to Microsoft (let's hear it for that segue, folks! Give it a nice round of applause!), faithful viewers Jason Curtis and Russell Maggio both noted a CBS MarketWatch article which does just that. Author Rebecca Lynn Eisenberg apparently feels that Apple is "becoming [its] enemy" and choosing to emulate the Redmond Giant. Is that a reasonable evaluation of Apple's new "Beyond The Box" strategy? Hey, that's up to you-- we just work here.

As evidence, Rebecca points to Apple's long-overdue Internet strategy and claims that it's exactly what Microsoft tried to do with MSN and failed. She insists that the whole Apple.com scheme is Apple's attempt to become a software company instead of a hardware company because desktop boxes are becoming "obsolete." (Never mind that the whole point of the Mac-only nature of iTools is clearly to sell more Macs.) Meanwhile, she also points out how Apple is "embedding" more Internet applications into the Mac OS without fear of Justice Department reprisal: Sherlock 2, QuickTime Player, and (in Mac OS X) the new email application. As for Aqua, Rebecca insists that it "borrows generously" from Windows and its features are "old hat" to Windows users. Her last piece of evidence of the Microsofting of Apple? "Apple is finally making money." Finally. Because the company sure hasn't been profitable for over two full years now, or anything.

Again, like we said, make up your own mind on the matter, but to us, Rebecca's arguments seem specious at best. If she's right, however, and Steve's planning on remaking Apple into the next Microsoft, we can only hope that our Mighty Mac Makers can avoid Microsoft's court woes. For instance, according to ZDNet, Microsoft temp workers finally prevailed in their 1992 suit against their employer for unfairly excluding them from the company stock purchase program. Then faithful viewer Jerry O'Neil pointed out an Associated Press article describing Microsoft's decision to settle Caldera's antitrust suit out of court. And of course there's that whole "Redmond Justice" thing still in the works. Well, if Apple chooses to copy Microsoft on the legal front as well, at least we won't have to worry about AtAT plot material ever again...


 
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The above scene was taken from the 1/10/00 episode:

January 10, 2000: Aqua didn't just show up onstage with Steve last Wednesday-- it also emerged in a Windows product unveiled the very same day. Meanwhile, a CBS MarketWatch columnist presents evidence that Apple yearns to be more like Microsoft, and Steve Jobs threw a bit of a hissy fit over wristwatches at last week's show...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 2026: That Dastardly Steve! (1/10/00)   A few years back, you swooned at the sheer mercenariness of the End of Cloning. Last year you reeled in horror at the G4 Speed Dump. But now, ladies and gentlemen, we bring you the scandal to end all scandals: Aquagate!!...

  • 2028: Watch The Drama (1/10/00)   We knew there had to have been some serious drama at last week's Macworld Expo! Not having been present, though, we weren't able to sniff out the truly soap-operatic action ourselves; thank heaven for MacWEEK, who dug up a nice little nugget of melodrama that came to us courtesy of AppleLinks...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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