Saturday, August 27, 2011

iHash and Other Badly Conceived Apple Products

Gone but his work lives on—most of it.  Innovative as he was, former Apple CEO Steve Jobs often pushed the "think differently" mantra too far. Here are a trio of moribund Jobs ideas that died harder than poisoned cattle.

An attempt to digitize and deliver corned beef hash over the Web never materialized because the question of "who wants this?" was never answered. A can-sized platform only produced an annoying hissing sound that could not be silenced either by turning off the device or breaking it with a stapler or glass paperweight. Only prolonged submersion in bleach would completely quell the racket. Jobs made no friends with this.

Following the huge success of the iMac, Jobs attempted to capitalize on unique colors and shapes by designing the Rhombus. Critics called the platform "solid" and weren't kidding as the computer was built without any ports. No USB, no Ethernet, no RJ20, not even a plug. However the box contained between 70 and 80 Apple Rhombus decals. It's as if marketing were trying to apologize to the customer but could only offer more decals. Jobs was said to have been very disappointed overall, though sales were brisk to the U.S. government.

Apple's first attempt to blend a biological organism with a variety of apps veered quickly into uncharted territory. Using an iguana for the beta test, Jobs ordered a small touch screen installed into the lizard that allowed users access to a calender, email, and iTunes. But the iguanas wouldn't stop scratching at the screen and generally rendered it unreadable within weeks. Monitor lizards were tried and rapidly adapted to the insertion. But they proved difficult to carry as they clawed and bit consumers, often escaping to devour bird eggs and any baby animal they could catch. The device found a small but loyal niche among athletic users with strong stomachs but not enough to encourage more production. Jobs ordered the lizard backlog donated to a San Francisco homeless shelter and ignored ever after any questions on My Mobile Lizard.
Images:, Clipart Etc., Top

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