Mac 13 and 19

First Apple Computer from the 70s

John Fraim

One never knows how much they’re connected to the digital world until needs like updating an old computer come along. 

Living in the Bay Area since the mid-70s, I’d been involved in some way with Apple Computers I lived in Berkeley in the 80s and attended meetings of the Berkeley Apple or Mac Users Group held on the campus of UC Berkeley. I went from having one of the first Macintoshes in the mid-80s and have stayed with them as they’ve changed through the years. I’ve changed a lot over the years but I don’t think nearly as much as the Apple and Macintosh computers have changed. Being the great marketers that Apple is it is naïve to think that my first “date” or “love” object in the modern, digital world – the Apple computers – would not change to meet the new markets, in the process leaving their old markets behind. 

The problem came down to that moment I had to contemplate giving up my MacBook Pro 2013 Mac 13) for my step-daughter’s 13” MacBook Pro 19 (Mac 19). She recently sent it to me. She was moving up to a larger MacBook Pro as she did a lot of media projects out in LA. The one she sent was a 13” MacBook Pro 2019 but still a lightweight compared to some of the new M1 machines and new technologies with Big Sur operating system in 2021. I received the computer a week ago. It sat in the corner of my office, unused for a week. 

It seems impossible to give up MacBook Pro 13 I use now. She is overburdened with all the tasks I place on her to create and record for me with words and music and images. She has a hard time dealing with the newest programs that push the horizons of computers farther and father. And also, possibilities for all artists or creators in the world. I wonder if I really want to seriously pursue filmmaking right now more than my writing. My two muses always are in some type of battle with each other. 

The First Mac Computer from the Mid-80s

But it looks like a good time to explore Mac 19 this weekend since my Mac 13 is at the computer doctors and he’s closed this weekend in Columbus. The reason I have her there is that all sites are displaying funny on the screen. I work with it but can’t do anything so take it to one of the town’s experts to see what’s wrong. I get Mac 19 out of the perfect Apple box my step-daughter sent Mac 19 to me in. 

I turn it on and begin the intensive questioning by the computer as to my identity. Checking and double checking on all of this to get one into the Apple system. Code after names. I can’t remember a lot of my codes as I forget where I’ve stored them. I write the new code names down. All of them are pretty weak the system on the computer tells me. F **k you I yell at Mac 19 after a trying round of checking in with systems and social media networks. I forgot how much I needed something that could translate the date Mac 13 to Mac 19. Not too much date, though, as the Mac created date could be stored on the cloud. This was the reason Mac 19 was only a 128 Mac. 

But this was the thinking of the Mac people. Less storage in the computer and more on the cloud. At the same time, more direct power in the ability of the Mac to capture, edit and send out one’s version of the world to others. More than any other network of tech devices. 

First Mac Operating Manual

The paradox of Apple Computer represents the corporate symbol of the paradox of all American today. I imagine, in some ways, my paradoxes, also. I especially focus on Mac 19 since Mac 13 was left at a computer “doctor’s” office on Friday. Over the weekend, I decided to set everything up on the Mac 19 like I mentioned above. 

Sometime in mid-afternoon on a brisk Columbus March day I make my way over to Best Buy at Easton to purchase a hub interface to make that connection between Mac 13 and Mac 19 technology. Six years of tech change is a lot more than you think. 

Getting back in good standing with various social media and codes of devices part of your network was more of something of a “misty” answer. Some sites were relentless in their questioning of me. I got a hub that served like a little interface terminal between the connection interfaces of the old tech world with the terminal connections of the new tech world. I also bought a small little box maybe half the size of a deck of cards. It was the Samsung 1 Terabyte Portable SSD T5. The amount of storage space with this little piece of technology seems one of the greatest tech events in history. The ability of smaller and smaller devices to hold greater and greater amounts of information. One of those continuing background “musaks” of our modern times. 

* * *

Once, the familiar systems I’m comfortable with begin to appear on Mac 19, I feel increasingly good. Some programs like transferring iPhone videos to the computer. Especially iPhone videos in that amazing Hollywood filming device called Filmic Pro. Many of my videos are in this amazing iPhone app. Filmic Pro almost seems to have her own muse-ship in my mind as filming with involves so much power and creativity. The ability to film Hollywood features using Filmic has been proved many times. 

Last week, I took the family to hear a leading Irish group in Columbus. I filmed all of it using Filmic Pro with a Rode MicroMic. Using an iPhone 11 Pro. The results were stunning when I viewed them. Were movie cameras like the Canon Vixia 60 I had or the Sony A6400 worth it when one could create this type of footage with just an iPhone and an app? Using Filmic Pro on an iPhone to film with the legendary Rode micro mic. 

This was an on-going question for me. It never seemed to fully resolve itself. Something that continued to appear on a nightly basis almost as a continuation of some scarier than crap apparition. 

2019 MacBook Pro

But there was this new Mac in my life. Mac 19. Thanks to my step-daughter generous re-gift to me of a computer I had bought for her. Getting into the new world of Mac 19 was the ultimate gift of my step-daughter to me. Yanking me into a more, up to date, Mac world. 

It was a good-sized “yank” at that. The difference great between Mac 13 and 19 occupied a large tech space of innovation. My photos are on Mac 19 but my music library is still on Mac 13. I realize how much I miss my music. For the first time. This becomes apparent. 

But there is so much that one has the ability to put on the Apple created Clouds out there on server farms.

The paradox presents itself again in the form of two grand symbols in opposition. The same symbols that were in opposition during the founding of the nation. The same symbols that have battled each other in our two political parties. Those two symbols at the heart of the Jungian battle of symbols: the archetype of masculine and that or feminine. Symbols impossible to remove as powerhouse symbols in modern life since each one contains the paradoxes contained in each other. 

* * *

And, the two grand expressions of these symbols in the outside world: the ideas of equality and freedom. It is important that this connection to the symbols is made in culture for all symbols have a great connection to the cultures they appear in. It was not really much more complicated than this. The idea of equality was the paradoxical opposition and founding symbol of America in the symbol of freedom.

The grand archetypes of masculine and feminine, freedom and equality, went up against each other in the founding moments of the nation. The only nation founded at the intersection of a great paradox between two competing symbols. The only nation in history founded this way. Founded, like a question involving the battling of two symbols for the answer. 

A question presented and therefore a form of offer to participate in an action in life that will involve some mental and perhaps physical activities. Perhaps, an all-absorbing question that becomes important to someone.

* * *

The battle between much of the political divide in America today resides (in many ways) inside the paradoxes of American’s grand tech powerhouse company Apple Computer and Apple’s amazing (magical) devices over the years. Truly, my life has been blessed by the genius and freedom loving style of Steve Jobs. This is what Apple has always represented to me: freedom, particularly, creative freedom. 

But today the equality of the Apple Operating System has taken over the original disruptive technology of the first years of Apple. Everything needs codes and check-in systems today to connect up with the technology empire of Apple. The new Macs are no longer storage devices as much as inputs into storage on the data farms called clouds.

The changing symbol of Apple technology as one moving from Freedom to Equality might be one of the grand sources of symbolic power for Apple technology. One can never quite define it by one or the other of these symbols. Apple started out to be so much about freedom but much of this early spirit is gone in the world’s 5th largest corporation. First users of Apple computers (like myself) have an understandable sense of nostalgia for these early days of Apple.

Apple’s New Headquarters

Yes, there was a great contrast between the 2013 and 2019 MacBook Pros. But the greatest contrast was between my 1985 Macintosh computer and the 2019 PowerBook Pro. It was a contrast between two different worlds of technology. The early world created through the symbolism of freedom and the current world through one of equality. The change in Mac mirrors my own change in many ways. Once, my Mac and me were given the freedom of creating separate worlds. But now, my Mac provides an equality of experience for all its users.

On Monday morning, I went to pick up Mac 13 from the computer repair guy. He told me the problem and it was a simple fix. Sites on the Internet were back to their usual appearance. I was still wondering what I would do with Mac 19. She was somewhat of an unexpected intruder into my relationship with Mac 13. I was happy to get Mac 13 back, though. All my music was on it and files and other things I hadn’t missed until they were gone. I was happy to pick up Mac 13 and take her home. Yet I almost wish I was able to pick up my old mid-80s Mac and take her home.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s