The Rules Are For A REASON (8/22/03)

Well, here we are at the end of the week! So we should be seeing new PowerBooks any minute now.

Yup. Any minute.

(Glances at watch)

...Uh, yyyeah. Well, clearly something's gone slightly awry, because everyone from Think Secret to Mac OS Rumors to MacBidouille to this guy had been expecting new PowerBooks this week. Plus, an alleged screenshot of distributor inventory status at MacTeens shows a whole lotta goose eggs as far as existing PowerBook models are concerned, at least for the 12- and 15-inchers, so something's gotta give. Obviously Apple planned for a release by today, and something went horribly, devastatingly wrong. But what?

If you like playing the easy odds, you may be banking on the delay being All Motorola's Fault™, especially since AppleInsider has already blamed them for the PowerBook delays up until now; if you recall, Apple reportedly wanted to ship new pro portables back in June, but Motorola's inability to ship suitable G4s in promised quantities scuppered that plan and reduced Steve Jobs to a raving potty-mouth whenever Motorola's name was uttered within earshot. (We're told this was particularly entertaining to trigger during board meetings and in line at the supermarket.) But our own sources are reporting that, in a miracle whose nature has stumped the world's leading theologians, Motorola actually did manage to squeeze out and deliver enough G4s to allow a new PowerBook launch, albeit barely.

No, the current delay, we're told, is purely an Apple-originated holdup. The PowerBooks were done and ready to ship, see, but it seems that someone in the marketing department didn't bother to read all the warnings associated with the new Power Mac G5-- specifically the one about the FCC requiring "the operator or a nearby person be more than one centimeter (0.4 inches) away from the AirPort Extreme antenna during transmission." Being unaware of the one-centimeter rule, he did what any rational person might do while transferring a large Photoshop file from a central server: he walked around to the rear of the machine and licked the antenna.

Now, we're probably going to blow your minds, here, but we'd like to assure you that the time-honored tradition of licking antennas to speed up wireless file transfers does not work. At best you're just wasting perfectly good saliva, and at worst (as in the case of the G5's external antenna) you run the risk of punching six or eight holes right through the fabric of space and time itself. (The FCC really hates that.)

So when the marketing guy pulled the old Lick Trick on his new G5, the ensuing dimensional vortex instantaneously sucked our entire universe into an alternate reality-- one completely identical to the one we'd been occupying, except that for some reason in this realm 1) the sky is blue, although no one seems to remember that it used to be orange, and 2) all the new PowerBooks were found to have become iron Mariachi frogs.

So it's back to the production phase, apparently, and we'll be waiting a while longer for those PowerBooks to get remade, unless Apple's dimensional engineers can find a way to transport us back; we understand they're already hard at work on a plan involving mattress tags and running with scissors. In the meantime, look for musical amphibian-themed Mexican lawn decor to show up at the Apple Store any time, now...

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The above scene was taken from the 8/22/03 episode:

August 22, 2003: Another weeks passes by PowerBookless. Meanwhile, Apple's showing in ZDNet's back-to-school computer recommendations is decidedly uncharacteristic, and theories are running rampant linking the past two weeks' virus activity to organized crime and terrorism...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 4160: Pigs Above, Snow Below (8/22/03)   Quick, somebody get us something to hold on to, because everything's topsy-turvy! Up is down, black is white, Freddy vs. Jason garners eleven Academy Award nominations! Hey, it could happen...

  • 4161: They're All In It Together (8/22/03)   Attention, Windows users-- welcome to Virusville, population: you. But you knew that already. Meanwhile, as usual, in the past week and a half we Mac users on the whole have been only mildly inconvenienced by Blaster...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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