It can be argued that no consumer electronics company has captured the public's fascination the way Apple has. Over the years it has morphed into more than just a company or corporation, but for many it has become a representation of a lifestyle or culture, and a status symbol complete with a larger fan base than most pop stars.
Here at Mashable, we're also quite fascinated by Apple and its achievements. The company is known just as much for its veil of secrecy and ability to get the Internet buzzing with rumors, as it is for the actual products. You're probably in on the gossip, but there are likely a few things you don't know about Apple.
So read on for the origins of product names, factoids about the Apple logo, what Wozniak sold to finance the Apple I, and more wonders dug up from the archives of Apple's past.
1. The First Apple Logo Featured Isaac Newton
Although the now-retro rainbow logo is arguably Apple's most well known, the very first Apple logo featured Sir Isaac Newton sitting under a tree, with an apple about to hit his head. (Legend has it that he was literally hit on the head with an apple and that led to the concept of gravity.)
The Newton logo was designed by the lesser-known Apple founder Ronald Wayne (the guy who sold his stake — that today would be worth $22 billion — to Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak for $800 – ouch!) and was only used briefly in 1976, since its high level of detail didn't really show up that well when shrunk down and stuck on a product.
The rainbow apple, designed by Ron Janoff, replaced Sir Isaac and remained the symbol of the company for many years until the simpler monochromatic apple logo was introduced in 1998.
2. Wozniak Sold His Scientific Calculator to Raise Capital
In order to raise enough money to buy parts and build the first few orders of the Apple I, Steve Jobs sold his Volkswagen van and Wozniak, then an HP employee, sold his Hewlett-Packard 65 scientific calculator for$500.
Those born after 1990 might be surprised that a mere calculator would raise any kind of capital, but back in 1976, a scientific calculator cost as much as a laptop does today, and the HP-65 was in fact marketed as "the smallest programmable computer ever."
Woz got a decent price considering it retailed for $795, and we imagine any calculator in his possession would have been more than fairly well used. We wonder if the buyer knew he was getting a piece of computing history — just imagine how much that calculator would fetch on eBay today.
3. The Apple I Cost $666.66
The high prices of Apple's current computers have recently been among critics' biggest complaints. But historically speaking, Apple products have always boasted a higher a price tag. In fact, when you account for inflation, back in the day, the very first Apple computer would have been more expensive than the MacBook Air or even a 17-inch MacBook Pro today.
The Apple I wasn't priced at $666.66 with any Satanic connotations, but rather for more practical reasons, asSteve Wozniak once explained at a news conference:
"I was into repeating digits," he said, and explained that the wholesale cost to stores was $500, and adding a third to get the retail price made it around $667, which Woz changed to all one repeating digit — $666.66 — "was just easier to type."
4. Apple Invented the "Dogcow"