Let them eat cake

CobraBoy (tbyars@earthlink.net)
Sun, 8 Mar 1998 08:55:40 -0800

<excerpt><color><param>0000,00D7,0000</param>> Apple's response to the
protest was to cater it.


Some 70-100 Newton developers, users, and Newton group alumni
converged on the Apple campus in

Cupertino, California on Friday, March 6 -- some to express their
displeasure at the discontinuation of the

Newton, some to convince Apple to reverse its position or to sell the
technology, and some to just say

goodbye -- and many hundreds more who could not attend made their
feelings known via phone, fax, and

e-mail. Picket signs and black armbands were in evidence, and we
handed out little Jolly Roger stickers to

cover the Apple badge on the MP2x00.

Apple's response to the protest was to cater it. They cordoned off
part of the parking lot and clearly

marked it with a large sign reading "Newton Developer's Association",
and provided parking. In

addition, Newton fans were greeted with Peet's Coffee, soft drinks,
cookies, and in a somewhat bizarre

touch, a large supply of wooden mockups of the OMP (not the MP130, as
I originally reported. Thanks

Zandr!). Apple did not discourage its employees from the "Newton
group" from attending, and quite a

few showed up to greet old friends, make some new ones, and chat with
concerned users. Some folks

watched from across the way, too. There was very little "official"
Apple presence whatsoever, although

Newton Developers Association leader Adam Tow did meet briefly with
Mark Rabkin to present a list of

questions about the discontinuation that Apple officials will
hopefully address in a planned conference call

with developers next week.

All in all, the gathering was quite low-key. Adam Tow gave a brief
speech near the end of the event that

brought a few hoots and hollers of support, and cries of "Sell it!",
but for the most part, those in

attendance chatted with each other, commiserated, and showed off their
Newtons to each other and to the

reporters in attendance - in essence, it was the largest Newton User
Group meeting ever, and that ever

will be, it seems. Most folks were in good spirits, and felt (like we
at the Underground did) that the real

point of coming - to show Apple that real people, in considerable
numbers, own, love, and support the

platform, to show the company that it had alienated exactly the kind
of Apple fans that it will need if they

are to survive, and frankly, to say farewell to the platform and the
folks responsible for it - had been

accomplished. Everybody feels better after a wake.

Apple's official press release, in words directly taken from a memo
sent by Steve Jobs to Apple

employees, stated:

</color> "Some people are understandably upset that Apple has decided
to stop

developing future Newton OS based computers, especially the

Today some of them are coming to Apple to protest our decision. This

OK. We are reserving a space for them on our campus, and will provide

them with coffee and other hot drinks.

Our decision to end Newton development was not taken lightly, and is

unlikely to be reversed. Even so, we will welcome the Newton customers

developers who come to protest this decision. Hopefully they will feel

our enthusiasm about the future of Apple, and leave more settled than



"The public wants what the public gets,

but I don't want what society's

got" - Paul Weller

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