Greg's bite: Apple and the cool factor
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Greg's bite: Apple and the cool factor

By Greg Mills

No one who ever sees many movies or TV programs could possibly miss the many placement of Apple products on the screen. The cool factor that Apple has cultured is passed on to actors who appear to use a Mac.  

From "Forest Gump," whose money man purchased stock for him in a "fruit company" (Apple) and made him rich, to "Independence Day" where a virus to implode the alien invasion was implemented with a Mac, the use of a Mac instead of a PC means something.

The chic factor that surrounds anything with the Apple logo on it puts the product and the user into the aura of coolness. While HP had to pay Carrie Bradshaw of "Sex and the City" to switch to an HP PC, most Apple placements in movies and TV shows are not paid appearances. Apple does donate products for placement but does not pay for them to be shown, per se. That coolness factor is worth billions and was carefully cultured by the "I'm a Mac, I'm a PC" advertising campaign.  

Nearly half of all popular movies have Mac placements in them, according to "Product Placement News" ( That is higher than any other product line.The iPad will also showing up in movies coming up; you can bank on it.  

Recently a researcher created a test for children to measure how they felt about race. They devised a picture showing five identical children with white on the left, black on the right and three shades progressively darker to the right. Then they tested children by asking them to point in association with terms like smarter, dumber, richer, etc., and were startled to see a significant tendency towards prejudice in kids that seemed politically correct.

I bet a lineup of logos with Apple, Microsoft, HP, Dell and Gateway would yield a strong prejudice against the PC world. Test kids on the words "cool," "easy," "hard," "dumb," "smart," and "expensive," and I bet Apple would soar. My 10-year-old daughter, who was drawing on a Mac at age two asked me the other day, "Dad why are PCs so hard to use?" I was stumped on how to answer that. It seems like after all these years of shamelessly copying the Mac OS, Microsoft would have figured out the magic and replicated it better.  

I love to see the confidant PC person wither when I mention the fastest PC that would run Windows Vista is a MacBook Pro. The price thing has also really gone away as well as the notion that there is not enough software for the Mac -- since you can degrade a Mac with Windows it your really want to. To me it is sort of like keeping pigs in the back seat of a new Mercedes, but some people have become fond of their piggish PC.

How much would you want to dump your Mac in favor of a PC? For me. as a dyslexic inventor, the answer is, enough to retire on, as I just can't get the hang of un-Mac computers. Seinfield and other actors who are really Apple folks at heart have had to put a price tag on giving up the Mac in favor of a PC. I doubt anyone is going to pay me US$5,000,000 to switch but that sounds about right.

Greg Mills does faux wall art ( and runs Cottage Industry Solar Shops (


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