Friday, May 9, 2008

MacHead the Movie And What Makes Mac Users So Fanatical


Today I had the pleasure coming of across a new site called, MacHead the Movie.com.

The title says it all, it's all about an upcoming movie concerning the amazing, faithful and dedicated community of Mac users. Mac users are famous for their loyalty, their passion in all things concerning Macs and Apple Inc., myself included.

The Macheads movie website describes the film, in part, as:

"MacHeads is a documentary about fanaticism and unconditional devotion to a corporate brand.

The film introduces the fascination characters that make up the Macintosh community. Their stories take us on a journey through Mac history culminating in the Apple revolution and its present day popularity to pose the ultimate question: Is Apple losing faith as a community and becoming just a ...brand?"

All-in-all, it looks like a movie that everybody in the Mac community is going to want to see as surely as they would the next Hollywood blockbuster, after all - its about them.

Kobi Shely is the Director, Writer, Editor and Co Producer of MacHeads the Movie, and his first feature length documentary. Kobi received a BA in Film at Hunter College in NewYork and, according to the movie's site, he got his experience editing several award winning shorts including The John Garfeld Story for the Turner Classic Movies, where he worked as the Assistant Editor.

You can check out more on the film at it's web link above, or at it's official blog.

So, just what is it that makes users of Apple's increasingly popular Mac a MacHead anyway, and why are Apple users, for the most part, so loyal, so dedicated and so vociferous in the first place?

No doubt, it has to do with many and various reasons. One of these, I firmly believe, is simply the fact that Apple users have been, in the past, so isolated and ridiculed by the huge number of Window users that the Mac community has instinctively felt threaten by Windows and it has, in response, developed a type of self defense posture against the notion that Windows was about to completely kill off the Mac. I remember so well being told, over and over, that the Mac was "going out of business any day now!" Such taunts may have seemed innocent at the time, but in reality they were threats, and anyone who feels threaten will automatically go into a self defense mode, Mac users being no different.

Another factor is what Mac users perceived as the arrogance and hypocrisy of Microsoft and it's Windows users, and a real sense of injustice that came from it. Apple, after all, not Microsoft, was the one who pioneered the graphical user interface, one which Microsoft DOS users criticized as being just a toy. Window users (not all, by any means) cried that the Mac was just something for the artsy, fartsy creative types and for people who didn't know how to use a "real" computer. The hypocrisy was palpable as they bashed Apple and Mac users while they slowly adopted first the mouse, the 3.5 inch floppy drive and then finally when they started to copy the Mac's graphical interface wholesale, even going so far to suggest that it was Microsoft who spearheaded all of this innovation. Yes, I know that Xerox experimented first with GUI's, but it still was Apple who advanced and brought it to the masses - NOT Xerox, let alone, Microsoft!

However, now that Mac's are beginning to take some serious market share from the Redmond giant, it is interesting to note that there are other important reasons why the Mac community is so loyal, so passionate, and why it is growing and attracting so much interest. Do you think, after all, that someone would make a movie about the Mac community if there was little, or no interest? No, this movie just underscores just how popular the Mac has and is becoming.

Another main reason for all this user passion and interest is because of the Mac's sheer and unadulterated simplicity. Microsoft loves to cram so many features into it's products that it, for what ever reasons, it creates creates complexity. People these days have enough to worry about, they don't need, nor do they want to add more complexity to their lives. Simplicity, after all, is at the very heart and soul of the Mac and just about everything else that Apple does. Simplicity inspires loyalty, dedication and passion and is possibly the biggest reason I can state for Apple's fanatical fan base. Simplicity and ease of use are words that automatically bring the Mac and Apple to the forefront of the minds of millions of people, inspiring a sense of brand loyalty that most companies would kill for.

OS X, for example, simply doesn't bother it's users with product keys, and constant pop-ups and verifications like Windows does. Also, Apple simply doesn't load it's Mac's with tons and tons of crapware, which is the equivalent of software spam! Apple, as already stated, refuse's to load it's computers with tons of features that nobody needs or wants - Apple may not include as many features as Microsoft does, but the ones that it does include are functional, simple and easy to use - not complicated ones that often don't work as in the case of Windows. It's not the number of features that you put into something - it's the implementation of such, as Chris Pirillo often points out!

Even though Window users like to run down Apple's for being picky when it comes to aesthetics, the fact is, that it does make a difference - a difference that people are actually willing to pay extra for. Apple's iMac is not only beautiful to look at, but the aesthetics are actually practical - less real estate is needed than the typical space pc towers requires. Everything is just there, in easy reach.

I could go on and on, but this is just a simple practice blog, not a novel. So in conclusion, I just want to say that people are passionate about Macs, about Apple, because even though Apple is a huge corporation in many ways, in others it is different. Apple, to use one of it's famous sayings, "Thinks Different." It actually cares about the products it creates, be they on the software or hardware side of things. Apple approaches it's creations as a work of art, something it insists has to be as perfect as possible. Microsoft, on the other hand, approaches creating products and services that will simply give itself the biggest market share and all of those dollars that comes with it.

Maybe, like the millions of old time Mac users and the millions of growing new Mac users, I am a MacHead, but frankly, I prefer it that way. Using a Mac has been, for the most part, a very pleasurable and productive experience that is, in essence, the main reason why the Mac community is so dedicated, passionate, loyal and dare I say it - fanatical!

In other words, Apple and the Mac are not just computers, phones, or just software, but are symbols of a way of life - a lifestyle that considers bringing out the best in itself and it's users!


And that's my 2 cents 4 this Wednesday, May 7, 2008.

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