Apple flavoured surprise

Been having a bit of a sort-out recently. Time and entropy produce mostly sludge, but occasionally from out of the mud one plucks a pearl. I recovered my 1987 Mac Plus from beneath several archaeological layers. Oh this was going to be fun ! I connected the massive 20MB hard drive to the beast, and switched it on. After a very short delay there was a sort of clack and then smoke. I switched it off again… Number three child, The Geek, was disappointed.

Several days later I decided to remove the case and take a look. You never know, maybe there would be a single obvious burned-out component and I would know what to replace. Well, twas not so simple, but removing the case revealed a wondrous suprise … the inside of the case is signed by the Macintosh team ! I took a rather crummy picture. Here is a small section :

Small section of the inside case of my MacPlus, with Mac Team signatures.

Its all explained at this Vintage Computing website, and in more detail at the Andy Hertzfeld section of the Mac folklore website. The Mac Design team had a party at which they all signed a large sheet of paper; Jobs then had the signatures engraved onto the Macintosh case mould. Over time as the design changed, some of the signatures got lost. I can’t find Jeff Raskin on mine, which is disappointing.

Lots of people know this already, but I didn’t, so it was a weird and pleasant surprise.

All I have to do now is find someone who can fix the bugger.

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7 Responses to Apple flavoured surprise

  1. You know about the “signed” chips, right? That is, pictures of Thor an what not on CPUs? Famous is a VAX chip which said, in Russian in Cyrillic letters: VAX: For those who care to steal the best.

  2. Mark McCaughrean says:

    Ooh, close, very close. I was almost prepared to give you a nod as a true Apple geek when, at the last, you dropped the ball.

    The great human interface guru was Jef Raskin, not Jeff.

    (Very sad to read about Dave Axon in your twitter feed; a real one-off who I’m proud to say I share a few late-1980′s, early-1990′s UKIRT infrared polarimetry papers with.)

  3. andyxl says:

    The Mac Plus is now working (video coming soon…) Do I get my Apple points back ?

    • Mark McCaughrean says:

      Of course you do.

      But Apple shares, that’s what you need, not points. I have a few which have done handsomely over the last few years and with the dividend coming too now, they might even yield enough to buy one those new-fangled iPaddy devices for the kids.

      Then again, they’re bound to plummet soon, such is the way of these things.

  4. [...] sad story of the Exploding Mac  has a happy ending. Not just those groovy signatures … Number Three Child and I [...]

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