Apple Blues

Apple Blues

I admit it. I was almost too down to even put today's page online. On days like this, I start to wonder if Apple and the rest of us are persisting in playing a game whose outcome has already been decided - and that finds us on the losing end.

Yes, it is Friday's announcements from Apple that have me down. For those of you who are somehow unaware of these events, a MacWEEK story has the main details - including the layoff of 4100 workers (of which 1400 are "temps"). A related story details the impending demise of such technologies as OpenDoc, text-to-speech and speech recognition, and possibly even Open Transport. Game sprockets are gone. The Performa line is history. An Apple FAQ press release covers similar ground. TechWire has an analysis. CNET's has a bleak assessment that I expect to be typical of the media reaction.

Oh well, life goes on. Time to pick myself up and get back to business as usual. And hope that, with the passage of time and possibly with the help of some good news down the road, my sense of optimism will return.

Update: Thanks for all the email you sent me with your words of encouragement. I appreciate it. And I feel better already!
Many responses focused on the fact that things are not as bad as they may seem. On the contrary, so the argument goes, it is good that Apple is finally getting rid of excess baggage that it should have discarded a long time ago - either because it didn't work well or would never get wide acceptance (OpenDoc was an example). Don Crabb's column in MacWEEK (cited by one reader) nicely summarizes this viewpoint. Others pointed out that some of my statements were a bit exaggerated. For example, Performa computers are not so much "history" as being renamed. Open Transport is not so much eliminated as simply not being ported to Rhapsody - which has NeXT's (superior?) OpenStep networking to take its place. These are all valid points (even if their positive spin is at the expense of a negative take on some of Apple's most heavily promoted past projects). Still, I would have felt better about all of this if these decisions were coming from a position of strength rather than one that too often seems like a desperate attempt to stem the tide. But why dwell on this? Apple has been reborn. Let's just take it a day at a time for now. And hope for the best.

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