In the competitive world of computers, sometimes, it’s better to do nothing than do this.
What’s this? Importantly, not much.
Apple, if you remember (or not, if you’ve been living under a rock in the middle of the Sahara desert), introduced the wildly acclaimed Mac mini back in early January.
Since then, the Cupertino Mac maker has been flooded with orders for the tiny $499 Mac and hasn’t matched supply to demand.
Frankly, that’s probably a good thing as it highlights Apple’s ability to create new markets, and innovate a form factor that people really want.
Of course, much of what Apple creates gets knocked off (as in “copy,” or “knock-offs”) eventually, by those in the PC world.
This time the “copy” comes from none other than chip giant Intel who showed off their concept of the “mini” at a recent developers conference.
This one is called the Sleek Concept Entertainment PC. Like the Mac mini, the “SCE PC” (say that three times, really fast) is a square, metallic-colored device that everyone says reminds them of Apple’s even smaller mini.
There is one notable difference between the popular Mac mini and the Intel “concept” PC. The Mac actually works. There’s a computer inside that little 6.5-inch by 6.5 inch by 2-inch high aluminum box.
The Intel box? Well, it’s just that. It’s a box. It’s aluminum plastic. It’s empty. There’s no PC inside. No harddrive, no motherboard, no connectors, no RAM, no CD player, no nothing. It’s just empty. Except for all the air inside (assumption on my part).
The Mac mini, to compare, is a real Mac. Hard drive. Memory. CD/DVD player. Connectors. Mac OS X. iLife application suite. All the Mac goodness you’ve come to know and love.
The Intel Sleek Concept Entertainment PC? Well, it’s plastic. Oh, it has a clock display in the front. That’s always handy. Even the Mac mini doesn’t have an LCD clock stuck on the front.
We’re so deprived these days.
To read in more detail what Intel can do in the way of conceptual design, Click Here.
Wait. There’s more.
If you’re totally stunned by the Intel concept “mini” then you’ll appreciate where the inspiration comes from. Intel’s designers have been coming up with earth shattering PC designs for many years.
Click Here for a look at the not yet popular “Ottoman PC.” If you think an empty aluminium colored plastic box is an “innovative design” wait until you see what you can do with the space where you put your feet while you’re watching TV at night.
Between you and me, I’m going to leave my commentary to myself. However, Intel’s PR spinsters had this to say about the Ottoman PC:
“A home server designed to reside in the den or living room acting as a gateway to encourage proliferation of connected homes through easy-to-use data and communication functions for each member of the family.”
Not to be outdone by the professional spinmeisters, Intel’s then VP for Desktop Products Group said, “We are naturally very excited about the creative implementation of our revolutionary Pentium III processor in the world’s first Furniture PC.”
Pentium III? Yes, the Ottoman PC was announced as a “concept” by Intel back in the day; 1999 to be exact. Six years later, Apple is still innovating and the world’s largest chipmaker has announced—an aluminum colored plastic box.
We live in interesting times.
Oh, one more thing. On the same page as the Intel Ottoman PC is pre-Mac mini offering from Apple. Enjoy.
How about you? Do you have a favorite “design concept” that wasn’t quite ready for prime time? Share your know how with other Mac users and click the Comments link below.