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Remembering NeXT

July 31, 2010


In most books that you will find about Cocoa on the Mac, there is a brief blurb about its beginnings with NeXT. NeXT was that company that Jobs ran before coming back to Apple which made ridiculously cool looking computers. I have never touched a NeXT Cube, but I wanted to from the first time I saw one. In fact, it was one of my goal for the first job I ever had. When I turned 16 I was able to get a job at the local camera shop, Bristol’s Camera on Key Biscayne near Miami. This job allowed me to fund my photography habit: buying chemicals for my darkroom, getting new lenses at cost, and more.

After graduation from high school, I went on to college at FSU, but every time I came home for holidays and breaks, I would go back to work at the camera shop. At that time I started saving the money I earned. Some of it would go towards buying CDs at Vinyl Fever in Tallahassee, but what I didn’t spend on music got saved away for a much bigger, more expensive item. That item was a special computer that became available the year I left high school. The NeXT. Ahhh. I only saw pictures of it in magazines. Looking back, I am not exactly sure why I wanted one. Maybe it was this article in Byte magazine. It was the top object of my desire.

My big disappointment came however, when I was approaching enough savings to buy one: they got out of the hardware business. The same year, I graduated from Florida State and got a real job at PC Docs. I drifted away from the idea of getting involved with NeXT and its not until the last few months that I return. I wonder how things might have been different had I a little more money back when I was 20. I wonder what would have happened had I bought that Cube, way back when.

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