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Old Dec 21, 2012, 04:11 PM   #1
Jason Garza
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Apples half baked ideas?

Another member called passbook another half baked attempt by apple. And I do agree with this completely but it got me thinking what else has apple done that has been half baked or that has just failed. Ping comes to my mind. Can any of you old timers think of any? This is all in fun lets play nice fan boys.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 04:20 PM   #2
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QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind. Fwiw I liked the eMac but. 50 lb g3 iMac with a flat tube CRT and g4 processor and a tendency towards severe video issues make it IMO their biggest flop in the os x era.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 04:23 PM   #3
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If this turns into another "Apple is doomed their quality control stinks thread" I'll blow up. There have always been issues with products and always will be-
iPod Nano- screen cracks/scratches
TiBook- paint coming off
iMac G5/White Intel- Bad caps
iMac G5/White Intel- host of GPU/screen issues
iMac G5- cooling system issues
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Power Mac G5- Liquid cooling system leaks
MacBook Pro- 8600m gt (GPU) solder failing
iBook G3 Dual USB- GPU solder failing

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind. Fwiw I liked the eMac but. 50 lb g3 iMac with a flat tube CRT and g4 processor and a tendency towards severe video issues make it IMO their biggest flop in the os x era.
The eMac was actually an okay computer, and it was fairly reliable.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 04:44 PM   #4
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^^^ More than half of those aren't half baked ideas, just some quality control issues.

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Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind. Fwiw I liked the eMac but. 50 lb g3 iMac with a flat tube CRT and g4 processor and a tendency towards severe video issues make it IMO their biggest flop in the os x era.
Biggest flop and half baked idea was definitely the Cube. Definitely tried doing the whole ultrasmall, compromising desktop thing about 4 years too early. Processor technology just wasn't there to where a small device like that could perform well enough for people's needs as full sized computers.

Apple really doesn't release many half baked ideas. It's not a company like Google that throws a bunch of ideas at the wall and sees which one sticks. Google's strategy isn't necessarily bad, lots and lots of companies do it.

Some other ideas I can think of are Thunderbolt, although not an Apple technology I think Apple didn't really think implementing this one through very well and kind of overrated people's enthusiasm for a brand new port.

Mac OS 9 was clearly pretty much a half made OS. Lots of features that were there simply did not work or were said to exist but didn't, nothing under the hood was changed from OS 8.6, just software that was made on top of the OS, and it didn't have common computing features that Windows had (protected memory being the biggest one).

The eMac served it's promise. A cheap computer that was low on features but had solid performance for the price.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 09:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind. Fwiw I liked the eMac but. 50 lb g3 iMac with a flat tube CRT and g4 processor and a tendency towards severe video issues make it IMO their biggest flop in the os x era.
eMac is the only one of those I ever heard of. Are most of these pre 2000? 2001-2 is when I came back to Mac.

I wanted the cube so bad when it came out but it was way out of my budget at the time. I still think about getting one when I see them on Craigslist just to stick it on the shelf.
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Old Dec 21, 2012, 10:15 PM   #6
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I actually like Google's strategy better, it's not scared to try a bunch of different projects even if they may fail.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 01:30 AM   #7
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 02:41 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by TSE View Post
Biggest flop and half baked idea was definitely the Cube. Definitely tried doing the whole ultrasmall, compromising desktop thing about 4 years too early. Processor technology just wasn't there to where a small device like that could perform well enough for people's needs as full sized computers.
Also, putting the ventilation on the top, where it can easily get covered by another object (people putting papers or other things on there), causing it to overheat. The Mac Mini overcomes this by putting the ventilation at the rear.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 04:28 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by TSE View Post
Some other ideas I can think of are Thunderbolt, although not an Apple technology I think Apple didn't really think implementing this one through very well and kind of overrated people's enthusiasm for a brand new port.

Mac OS 9 was clearly pretty much a half made OS. Lots of features that were there simply did not work or were said to exist but didn't, nothing under the hood was changed from OS 8.6, just software that was made on top of the OS, and it didn't have common computing features that Windows had (protected memory being the biggest one).
Thunderbolt is fantastic. They used an emerging intel connectivity standard and married it up with their own DisplayPort standard so it carries both video and PCIe on 1 port that's already being adopted by a lot of monitor manufacturers for larger than 1920 x 1200 resolution displays.

It might be initially very expensive but I think that's as much peripheral manufacturers gouging customers. The controller chips in thunderbolt cables are made by the same company who make Firewire to SATA controller chips, Oxford Semiconductor.

Once more and more uses for the technology come out, which pretty much covers ANY use of a PCIe slot that can be converted to not just external but crucially, portable too, the prices of peripherals in widely used sectors like storage is bound to reduce.

I agree about Mac OS 9, it was just a last ditch attempt to keep peddling the incredibly dated manual memory management and cooperative multitasking that Mac OS still had. It always puzzled me how they developed the Mac OS and Lisa OS at the same time in the early 80s and never kept any of the Lisa OS Pre-emptive multi-tasking code around to implement in a later update of the Mac OS once CPUs became more powerful. Atari had the Falcon 030 with a Multitasking version of TOS, why not a multitasking Mac OS on the same CPUs? I think purchasing NeXT and merging it's OS with the Mac OS interface was the best thing they could have done in the end but they shot themselves in the foot by shelving the multi-tasking code from Lisa OS instead of implementing it into Mac OS at a later date.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 07:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Garza View Post
.....Ping comes to my mind.....
It wasn't so much that it was half-baked, but without Zuck's blessing, and full Facebook integration, it just wasn't going to take off.

With Facebook integration from day one, it might have succeeded.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 07:53 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barkmonster View Post
Thunderbolt is fantastic.
Thunderbolt is a fantastic idea but the way it was implemented was definitely half-baked. Here we are nearly 4 years after implementation with no serious peripherals to speak of. It is only just now being adopted into PC motherboards, apparently due to some sort of exclusivity that Apple had with Intel over TB ports for the first year... that's where the half-baked idea comes in to play... why demand exclusivity when what is going to make this port great is peripherals and there is no incentive for peripheral device makers to crank them out as long as they are "Apple only". Getting TB into Macs and PCs asap would have been a much smarter way to go, IMO.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 08:18 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by sviato View Post
I actually like Google's strategy better, it's not scared to try a bunch of different projects even if they may fail.
Not sure I'd like it if I was a shareholder.
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 02:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind. Fwiw I liked the eMac but. 50 lb g3 iMac with a flat tube CRT and g4 processor and a tendency towards severe video issues make it IMO their biggest flop in the os x era.
The Newton line was solid and had plenty of users that were satisfied with it...

How is that half-baked?
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Old Dec 22, 2012, 10:12 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by frjonah View Post
Thunderbolt is a fantastic idea but the way it was implemented was definitely half-baked. Here we are nearly 4 years after implementation
Uh ?

It'll be the 2nd birthday of the first Mac with Thunderbolt in February 2013. Don't exaggerate.
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Old Dec 23, 2012, 03:52 PM   #15
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Uh ?

It'll be the 2nd birthday of the first Mac with Thunderbolt in February 2013. Don't exaggerate.
Good call... Point still stands though and, actually, with the new peripherals coming out now that PCs are adopting TB it sort of accentuates the point I was making. You are right though on the date... Don't know what I was thinking. My error was all the more aggregious given that I was one of the early adopters
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Old Dec 24, 2012, 08:33 AM   #16
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Quote:
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If I am not mistaken, Thunderbolt is still exclusive to Macs? THAT is the reason it is a total failure... It's good technology, but it is essentially proprietary.
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It just recently began showing up on PCs. It's Intel's standard to control, Apple just had a one-year exclusive deal to it.
So, further research has changed my opinion on this question drastically. Somewhere here on MacRumors, a poster stated that, for the first year, the use of TB was exclusive to Apple... if this were true, it would be natural to conclude that such an exclusivity arrangement would actually be very bad for the market given that peripheral manufacturers would have little incentive to produce TB peripherals in sufficient volume to benefit consumers (i.e. enough to create some serious competition leading to MSRP depression).

Well, it turns out that it's simply not true that there was any exclusivity b/t Intel and Apple on the TB port, which, in my view, makes Apple's early adoption visionary, not half baked. The technology should eventually become THE standard for peripherals, displacing USB for that title, but tech. companies were reluctant to pioneer the change because of inertia and cost... Apple took charge and now, nearly two years after adoption, PC manufacturers are finally following suit. I wouldn't expect real widespread TB adoption for another 2 years, and not a significant encroachment on USB dominance for at least another 2 years on top of that, but it would have been much longer if Apple hadn't gotten the ball rolling when it did.

And, no, I don't see a close comparison to FW because the capabilities of TB are so much more advanced that anything FW had to offer.

Links:

TB Not Mac Exclusive: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380954,00.asp

Erroneous Geek.com report:
http://www.geek.com/articles/chips/t...then-20110225/

July 2011 Sony Vaio review with "Light Peak", aka Thunderbolt:
http://www.engadget.com/2011/07/29/s...z-review-2011/
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Old Dec 26, 2012, 10:47 AM   #17
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The one I can think of is the Apple Hi-Fi.

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Old Dec 26, 2012, 11:07 AM   #18
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Quote:
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So, further research has changed my opinion on this question drastically. Somewhere here on MacRumors, a poster stated that, for the first year, the use of TB was exclusive to Apple... if this were true, it would be natural to conclude that such an exclusivity arrangement would actually be very bad for the market given that peripheral manufacturers would have little incentive to produce TB peripherals in sufficient volume to benefit consumers (i.e. enough to create some serious competition leading to MSRP depression).

Well, it turns out that it's simply not true that there was any exclusivity b/t Intel and Apple on the TB port, which, in my view, makes Apple's early adoption visionary, not half baked. The technology should eventually become THE standard for peripherals, displacing USB for that title, but tech. companies were reluctant to pioneer the change because of inertia and cost... Apple took charge and now, nearly two years after adoption, PC manufacturers are finally following suit. I wouldn't expect real widespread TB adoption for another 2 years, and not a significant encroachment on USB dominance for at least another 2 years on top of that, but it would have been much longer if Apple hadn't gotten the ball rolling when it did.

And, no, I don't see a close comparison to FW because the capabilities of TB are so much more advanced that anything FW had to offer.

Links:

TB Not Mac Exclusive: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2380954,00.asp

Erroneous Geek.com report:
http://www.geek.com/articles/chips/t...then-20110225/

July 2011 Sony Vaio review with "Light Peak", aka Thunderbolt:
http://www.engadget.com/2011/07/29/s...z-review-2011/
Sony, Apple, and Intel (Mostly Intel, with suggestions from Apple and Sony) all helped fund and develop Light Peak. Light peak is the correct, generic term for the technology.

Apple took Light Peak, and combined it with their mini display port, and renamed it Thunderbolt.

Sony, a consumer technology company infamous for making up their own standards not compatible with anything else, took Light Peak and implemented it into a port that was only compatible with their dock with a built in optical drive and GPU. I do not believe there are other accessories that work with Sony's implementation, and never will be.

I do not believe Apple necessarily implemented Thunderbolt at the wrong time. It is a fantastic technology, and the sooner they could release it, the better. Where they went wrong, however, was marketing it heavily when no accessories were (and still there's a case that no real consumer is going to use it currently) available, and the 1 year exclusivity really hurt Thunderbolt/light peak/whatever with the fact that USB 3.0 had been given a huge head start in the majority of PCs and less PCs with thunderbolt = less accessories.
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Old Dec 26, 2012, 03:20 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Orange Crane View Post
QuickTake, PowerCD, Pippin, Newton, eWorld, and the eMac come to mind.
I wouldn't consider the QuickTake or Newton half baked ideas. They were both revolutionary products that helped kick start the consumer digicam and PDA markets. They were ahead of their time.

When it comes to half baked products, I give the award to the Macintosh TV was a good idea poorly executed. I liked the idea of a TV/Computer combo, especially for a college dorm or a tiny apartment where space is a premium. The problem was the Macintosh TV was a mediocre computer and an even worst TV.
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Old Dec 26, 2012, 05:20 PM   #20
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