TV-PGMay 21, 1999: Hold the phone-- when taken together as a single machine type, all iMacs combined were the number one seller in April. Meanwhile, an enterprising woman with a knack for the needle redefines the iMac's cuteness factor, and Apple denies that there's anything to the "Mac OS 8.6.1" CDs shipping with new blue-and-white G3s beyond a simple misprint...
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From the writer/creator of AtAT, a Pandemic Dad Joke taken WAYYYYYY too far

7 + 11 = Number 1, Baby (5/21/99)

Aren't ordinal numbers wacky? Here we were all concerned about the fact that for the first time since its debut last August, the iMac actually fell out of the list of the top five best-selling computers at retail-- the newer fruit-flavored models combined to take the number eleven slot, while the classic Bondi blue units did slightly better by taking seventh place. Not that seventh and eleventh aren't respectable places for a lumpy little translucent computer to be resting, but it looked like a decline and that's always a little worrisome. As it turns out, though, separating iMacs by Bondi blue vs. fruit-flavored paints a much bleaker picture than the one that develops when you look at the iMac's sales numbers as a whole. When presented as a united front, the iMacs continue to kick some serious sales booty.

Specifically, check out MacNN's further analysis of PC Data's sales figures; add together the number of Bondi blue iMacs sold and the number of fruit-flavored units purchased and suddenly those seventh and eleventh place finishes magically transform into the number one slot. That's right; when you look at the big picture, the iMac was the single best-selling computer in April "by a slight margin." (Yeah, sure, if you lump all the Hewlett-Packard Pavilion models together, this whole argument goes right out the window, but give us a break-- we're trying to feel good, here.) So don't count the iMacs out just yet-- they're still a force to be reckoned with, and we're particularly interested to see what happens once Sears starts selling them in a week or so.

True, iMac sales volume did in fact drop during April, but that's very likely due to Apple's attempt to switch over to the 333 MHz G3 in the currently shipping units-- and that can't detract from the joy of being number one. It just goes to show you: separate but equal just doesn't work. iMacs of all colors, flavors, and speeds must unite to fight the oppression and onslaught of the Wintel hegemony. Where's Jesse Jackson? Maybe this will get him to look upon Apple more favorably. Ya think?

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And Leave The Tags On (5/21/99)

"The iMac is just a toy." Man, we can't even begin to tell you how many times we've heard that in the past year, generally by information-technology manager types who talk big and get paid big but wouldn't recognize a real computer if it bit them in the collective butt. Please note that we're not generalizing here-- we're talking about specific IT-manager-types, not all IT-manager-types as a whole. We're sure there are other IT managers out there who actually know what they're doing. At least, we assume it's a distinct possibility...

Anyway, for those of you who, like us, are just sick to death of hearing what is actually a very capable, useful, inexpensive, and simple-to-maintain computer for business use get dismissed as nothing more than a mere "toy," Kathleen Rosario has a nifty solution that'll put a smile back on your face: stuffed iMacs. What could be more relaxing than a nice plush iMac to squeeze as you imagine the soft, flabby neck of your IT director giving way under the pressure of your thumbs, windpipe crushing as you throttle... er, sorry, where were we? Oh yeah, stuffed iMacs. Fun for the whole family, great gifts, sure to be collector's items someday, and only ten bucks plus shipping. Read all about them and check out a picture of the adorable little guys at

Now what we'd really like to see is for Ty to introduce iMac Beanie Babies. Sure, we're as tired of the whole Beanie craze as the next couple of shmoes, but just think how cool it would be to display a line of five fruit-flavored Beanie iMacs across the top of your monitor. Ideally, they'd even be somehow translucent so you could see the beans (or whatever it is they use) inside. Perhaps it's time for someone in Apple's marketing department to start making some phone calls...

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The Phantom Mac OS (5/21/99)

So let's say you just took the plunge and bought yourself a brand-spankin'-new Power Macintosh G3. You giddily rip the box open and begin the loving process of setting up the new addition to your Mac family. You feel that nothing on earth could possibly tear your eyes away from the system's gorgeous translucent Ice-and-Blueberry curves-- except, what's that on the CD-ROM that shipped in the accessory kit? Why, it's, it's... it's Mac OS 8.6.1! Suddenly you're no longer gawking at the luscious curves of your new Mac, because instead you're staring at the CD-ROM in your hand which claims to include a version of the Mac operating system that, as far as the rest of the world is aware, doesn't even exist yet. How cool is that?

Well, unfortunately, as it turns out it's not that cool after all. There is, in fact, no Mac OS 8.6.1 yet, and according to a Tech Info Library article, some of the CD-ROMs just got misprinted. At least, Apple claims there's no Mac OS 8.6.1 yet... though how accidentally labeling a CD-ROM with an extra ".1" in the version number is beyond us. Our best bet is that they just got a little ahead of themselves; they probably expected 8.6.1 to be out by now, or something, since 8.6 has really been done for several weeks now.

So, bummer though it may be, you've been robbed of the excitement of having discovered a new version of the Mac OS before anyone else. On the plus side, you have a CD-ROM with a perfectly serviceable copy of Mac OS 8.6 on it, and the fact that it's silk-screened incorrectly might make it a collector's item someday-- especially since Apple has fixed the error and is now shipping correctly-labeled CDs with all new machines. Just think; someday, it may fetch a pretty penny at Apple memorabilia conventions, along with those shrink-wrapped eWorld retail boxes and the OpenDoc tour CDs...

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