With all the curved and smooth surfaces, the intuitive and inviting software, the simple and colorful manual, I arrived at a certain level of expectation. Apple cares dearly about details. Listening to how Steve Jobs spend years and years with Next perfecting monitor stands, motherboard layouts, and every other piece of the machine experience reinforces this expectation.
Which only makes the surprise even more shocking. How could they forget about the noise? What good is a snow white beauty if she snores like an ogre? How can the silver tower command respect when it stutters like an ironclad?
For all my awe and acceptance of the Apple offering, I'm baffled, disappointed, and slightly angry at their negligence in assuring a sound of silence for work or study.
Frustrating will make you clamor for Annoying
My iBook has two fan speeds: Annoying and frustrating. Annoying will only take a few minutes to kick in at home. If I leave the computer to mind the simple task of processing my typing or playing my tunes, I can normally stay at annoying. But if I try something more involved, such as parsing pictures around in iPhoto, while unpacking a .sit archive, and having Mozilla guard a dozen tabs? Frustrating will take over.
And when frustrating takes over, it does so in a very un-Apple way. No smooth transition as it gears up. No, it roars so loud, you wonder if it's alright. Then it will hover slightly less loudly, though still making sure you know it isn't an issue of pushing air. It's an issue of a two-dollar fan with grinding away anything but frictionless.
But even the roars of my iBook pales in comparison with the constant humming of my mates 733 tower. From the second you turn it on 'till the second you turn it off. Vrum, vrum, vrum. Music at a considerable volume is a requirement for operating that piece of machinery.
How could this happen? How could you let it happen, Steve? Are the air-conditioned offices of Paulo Alto so comfortable that they make you forget about countries without such power-sucking joys that keeps your fans from parading? Were there really no where else you could cut the $10 (tops!) extra a decent fan would add to the marginal costs? Please, Steve, make me understand.
(Alternatively, keep releasing free nuggets of software gold, like iCal, to remind why I'm still in love with your company)