Apple Computers Influence on Popular Culture Term Paper

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Apple Computers Influence on Popular Culture

Apple Computer, Inc. is recognized worldwide for creating powerful solutions that are based on user-friendly personal computers, servers, peripherals, software, personal digital assistants and Internet content (Apply Pp). Headquartered in Cupertino, California, Apple is an innovator in the information industry and a leader in multimedia technologies (Apple Pp). It develops, manufactures, licenses and markets solutions, products, technologies and services for business, education, consumer entertainment, scientific and engineering and government customers in roughly one hundred and fifty countries (Apple Pp). Apple has had a profound influence on popular culture. Macintosh users are not just users, they are devotees, who use the computer to express their beliefs on the relationship between technology and society, for they believe the Mac is not simply an object by which to think, it is a spiritual path to a future where technology and humans co-exist in harmony (Lam Pp).

As opposed to other computers, Mac users emphasize that Macintosh computers do not 'fight back' (Lam Pp). These enthusiasts believe that computer technology will help improve humanity and to them the Mac symbolizes a spiritual passage to an utopian future, tying its followers together (Lam Pp). They even view it in evangelistic terms. The first Apple was the forbidden fruit of the Tree of Knowledge with which one taste sent all of mankind into the great current History (Lam Pp). The second Apple belongs to Isaac Newton and symbolizes mankind's entry into the age of modern science (Lam Pp). And according to Jean-Louis Gassee, the "Apple Computer symbol was not chosen purely at random, it represents the third Apple, the one that widens the paths of knowledge leading toward the future" (Lam Pp).

Critics and commentators have long acknowledge Apple's pioneer role in the computer industry and its unique culture established by its founders (Lam Pp). For example, R.X. Cringely, writes that "alone among microcomputer makers of the 1970's, the people of Apple saw themselves as not just making boxes or making money, they thought of themselves as changing the world" (Lam Pp). In fact, the co-founder of Apple Computer, Steve Jobs, is usually portrayed as a prophetic figure that brings an intensive religious fervor to his design team (Lam Pp). Former CEO of Apple, John Shculley describes "it was almost as if there magnetic fields, some spiritual force, mesmerizing people...It was nearly a cult environment" (Lam Pp). S. Turkle in her book, "The Second Self: Computers and the Human Spirit," explained that the computer culture in its early stage emphasized the mastery of complicated computer programming (Lam Pp). Then in the mid-1990's a new 'musical' culture of computing developed in which computers are viewed as "tools we sue to write, to design, to play with ideas and shapes and images," thus, subsequently "a new set of intellectual and emotional associations with computers were developed" (Lam Pp).

And Apple played a major role in this change of the computer culture (Lam Pp).

What characterizes the history of Apple and its users is their sense of community (Lam Pp). Apple employees thought of themselves as part of a counterculture in the computer industry and that there should be a partnership between the computer and its users where human creativity could flourish (Lam Pp). Charles Piller of MacWorld, writes, "the people who created the Macintosh viewed themselves as saving humanity from the mediocrity and colorlessness of other computers," they were rebels and nonconformists and Mac users thought of themselves the same way (Lam Pp).

Apple's "1984" award winning commercial introducing the Macintosh computer to the world, which aired during…

Sources Used in Document:

Works Cited

Piller, Charles. "Macintosh Mystique." Macworld. February 1, 1994; Pp.

Apple Advertising Takes Top Honors in Major Industry Awards." PR Newswire.

July 31, 1996; Pp.

Lam, Pui-Yan. "May the Force of the Operating System be with You: Macintosh

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