The Mac OS Anthology

Introduced on the stage by Steve Jobs during the May 1999 WWDC Keynote, the “Mac OS Anthology” was a collection of many Mac OS operating systems to aid (registered) third party developers in testing their software for compatibility.

The first Mac OS Anthology boxsetIt was presented originally in the form of a boxset of 4 DVDs which included all of the releases of the Macintosh operating systems since System 7 ’til the current one which at the time was Mac OS 8.5.

The DVDs were chosen for their archival capacity and featured all of the international localizations of the systems, up to 25 languages.

According to Applefritter the back of the first four DVDs reads:

Worldwide System Software for Developers
1999 Edition
From System 7 to Mac OS 8.5 and beyond
This DVD-ROM set is the first DVD offering from the Apple Developer Connection. The DVD format was selected because it delivers so much useful data on one convenient and easy-to-use medium. This collection is designed to assist you in extending your product’s reach into international markets and environments.

A disc from the Mac OS AnthologyFrom an archived copy of the Apple website we also know the sale price: 199 USD, and just 149 for those ADC members who ordered a copy before May 14. In 2000 the price was discounted to just 99 dollars.

Volumes 5 and 6 were devoted to Mac OS 8.6, just introduced at the aforementioned 1999 WWDC so the contents of the DVDs, which by the way are not bootable, at the end of the year became as follows:

Disc 1: 7.0, 7.0.1, 7.1, 7.1.1, 7.1.2, 7.5, 7.5.3, 7.5.5 Update, 7.6.1, OS 8.0
— Disc 2: OS 8 (continued), OS 8.1
— Disc 3: OS 8.1 (continued)
— Disc 4: OS 8.1 (continued), OS 8.5, OS 8.5.1
— Disc 5: OS 8.6
— Disc 6: OS 8.6 (continued)

The two Mac OS Anthology boxsetsLater, in February of 2000 Apple offered to ADC developers two more volumes for Mac OS 9 (in 15 languages) collecting the other four in a new, second boxset labeled “2000 edition”.

After that, in 2001, the Mac OS Anthology again grew to include two more DVDs. These were to be the last additions, featuring Mac OS 9.0.4, 9.1 and the first Mac OS X and brought the grand total to 10 discs.

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Images taken from the Apple website and from

Saturday 02 April 2011, 7:54 am
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A Mac in Graffiti Bridge

There’s a Macintosh in Prince’s 1990 Graffiti Bridge movie.
It can be seen twice: at the beginning, during the first scene, and again at the end, during the end titles.

A Mac in Graffiti Bridge 01 zoomIn both instances it is being used by Prince to write and/or edit music. Prince, or rather “The Kid”, the character he plays, keeps the computer in his living quarters located just under the stage of the “Glam Slam”, the club of he is the (fictional) owner in Graffiti Bridge.

Although the Mac is always shown in mid-darkness and the camera closes up only on the screen (more on that later) but it’s clearly a compact Macintosh and considering when Graffiti Bridge was released, in November 1990, the list of possible models is pretty much easy to narrow.

We can immediately cross out the Mac Classic because it was introduced in October of 1990, just one before the movie showed up in theaters. Another model we can exclude is the original Mac, released in 1984, which was too old and frankly too underpowered for a serious musical use. The same is probably true for the “Fat Mac”, from 1985 which just had more RAM memory.

This leaves us just very few choices. Three actually: a Plus, a SE or a SE/30.

Tuesday 01 March 2011, 2:12 pm
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A touch of (shuffle) green

iPod shuffle 1gen - cartolina pubblicitariaThe first three generations of the iPod shuffle are a good example of how Apple keeps evolving and reinventing its products and yet strives to maintain a sense of continuity to communicate that the core concept and identity is unchanged.

In the case of the iPod shuffle there is one element which has been painstakingly kept throughout all of the models: the use of the color green. It has been successfully associated by Apple with the act of shuffling, the random order (and reproduction) of the audio content by the player, and thus with the shuffle itself.

iPod Shuffle 1gen back - shuffle onThe original, first generation of the iPod shuffle, launched in January 2005, used this color extensively in its packaging and promotional material.
Green was the background of the TV commercial and print ads, green was the dominant color of the smallish box in which the iPod was sold and green was the color under the button which switched the iPod on and put it on continuous or in a shuffle play mode.

iPod Shuffle 2gen topThe second iPod shuffle generation, launched in September 2006, kept the green theme in many of the aspects such as packaging (although in a more subtle manner) and the switch controls. Apple even made a step further and chose green as one of the (many) colors in which the microscopic player, now in the form of a clip, was painted and made available to the public.

The third generation of the iPod shuffle, launched in March 2009, represented a bold choice by Apple.
iPod shuffle 3gen topThe player was made ridiculously small and given a clean and minimal, almost aseptic design, stripped even of the front controls, which were moved -in a controversial choice- to the earphones’ cable. But once again the color green was kept as a defining mark of the “shuffle” brand, used sparingly but effectively in two ways. One such use was -again- under the on/off switch, as in previous models, this time the only spot of color on an otherwise chromatically neutral device.

iPod shuffle doubleclickiPod shuffle longclick

The other use is not on the device and can be seen on the Apple website, during the Guided Tour Video, which shows how to use the new controls on the earphones. To emphasize and make absolutely clear how how each single, multiple or prolonged click activates a function Apple chose to use animations. During each of those key moments there are circles, big green circles.

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Wednesday 02 February 2011, 6:07 pm
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