January 07, 2008
The following is an excerpt from “Burden’s Wheel,” the first chapter of The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google, which is being published today by W. W. Norton & Company.
At a conference in Paris during the summer of 2004, Apple introduced an updated version of its popular iMac computer. Since its debut in 1998, the iMac had always been distinguished by its unusual design, but the new model was particularly striking. It appeared to be nothing more than a flat-panel television, a rectangular screen encased in a thin block of white plastic and mounted on an aluminum pedestal. All the components of the computer itself – the chips, the drives, the cables, the connectors – were hidden behind the screen. The advertising tagline wittily anticipated the response of prospective buyers: “Where did the computer go?” Read the rest of the article at roughtype.com.