Conquent: Without Limits
Conquent: Without Limits
Michael Bissell's Blog

My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything

2011-01-24 12:59:53
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I know, I know... I rant about Apple way too much, but part of it is that blogging as a way of therapy. I've had a lot of trouble nailing down exactly what bugs me about Apple users, and I know most of it is a personal problem. After all, the products are sleek, they do what they advertise, and overall, there isn't anything really wrong with them, they just don't do what I want them to do.

The problem is the Brand Evangelists, or what we used to call the loyal customers. They're just so damn smug, so self-righteous, and so sure that they have the best thing ever. Not all of them, but consistently enough that I've started developing a knee-jerk reaction to all Apple users, which isn't any better than they are, I suppose.

I realized that there's a big difference when I compare the geek culture kids I've known my whole life with the iStuff folks. When Teagan was working for me, he would come in with a new phone every couple months. He'd have tricked it out with something cool (like the time he turned it into a remote mouse and keyboard for the computer in our meeting space) and he would love to talk about it and he was genuinely happy with his new toy. Most importantly, he was always interested in what other people were doing with their new toys.

Talking with a neighboring shop owner over beers, she pulled out her iPad and dismissed my Kindle. It wasn't Apple, so she didn't care at all about how my little electronic appliance did things differently than her little electronic appliance.

It's the outright dismissal that I hate, not the technology, not the The Totalitarian Regime of Apple, or the Apps an excuse for a bad web browser. It's being treated like a second class citizen. And we're talking about tech stuff here, stuff I know intimately, but I get excluded from the game because I didn't accessorize properly.

Apple and Nike both come up any time we talk about branding. While I hate Nike's products, I don't have people looking at my Carnac shoes and saying, "you still don't have Nike?" My shoes are really great -- just like my little netbook and my Kindle are really great.

The difference is that when I'm talking about athletic gear, I'm talking to athletes. In the past, when I've been talking about techie gadgets, I've been talking with techies, only now, I'm subjected to fashionistas who think they're talking about tech.

If I had to defend my footwear or listen to how Nike is the only shoe manufacturer in the world that "gets it" I'd probably rant about Nike just as much.

See John's response blog to this posting at The Demand For The Loss of Creativity

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Alien Technology and Government Conspiracies

Eric Weaver: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 13:16:43

That's the point... they're not techno-gadgets, they're hipster accessories. This is SJ's genius, how to make mediocre tech beautiful enough that the hipsters can't resist it.

Jane Blue: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 21:12:30

Well, I'm your mother and I like Apple. Is there something Freudian here? (I've always had Apple computers, except before Apple existed--no other gadgets.)

Michael Bissell: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 21:13:23

No, nothing Freudian -- and old Apple isn't the problem (Eric used Apple for ever). It's the iPhone and iPad crowd that drive me nuts. And you've never tried to evangelize to me about the superiority of Apple.

Matthew Thiel: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 21:14:17

Haters gonna hate.

Seriously though, why do tech gadgets have to be mutually exclusive? I own an iPad because it's great for most of what I needed a laptop for but can be hidden in a case to look like a small notepad. The only reason I don't ALSO own a Nook or a Kindle is because I'm an uncultured jerk that isn't likely to finish a single book this year anyway.

Michael Bissell: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 21:14:44

Ah, but you see, Matt, you and I can have a logical discussion about features, or rather, "what it does." The problem with anything that becomes a fashionable, "must have" is that it transcends reality -- women who wear incredibly impractical shoes, men who get the super fancy watch that doesn't keep time...

It's not about features, it's about that certain je ne sais quoi, and you can't argue with "I don't know..."

Matthew Thiel: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-24 21:16:18

Fair point. Apple has burned me enough times that I don't see their brand the same way the general public does, I think. Still, I get accused of being an Apple-superfan, which drives me nuts since I actually own way more Dell kit than Apple. They used to be cool before everyone else got into them, and I'm only wearing these Apple gadgets ironically, etc.

Julie Versman: Re: My Emotional Repsonse to iAnything
2011-01-25 09:40:45

Who - or what - you love is rarely logical. Rant away, my friend, if it makes you feel better..

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