Mac history buffs now have a new hangout zone. Folklore.org is a site devoted to the genesis of the Apple Macintosh (you know, the computer that is now taking over the planet thanks to the iPod).
The site is the baby of Andy Hertzfeld, one of the Apple techies that helped develop the Macintosh.
Here’s he describes how ‘Macintosh’ was preferred to ‘Bicycle’.
"Jef Raskin [father of the Macintosh] chose the name ‘Macintosh’, after his favorite kind of apple, so when Jef was forced to go on an extended leave of absence in February 1981, Steve Jobs and Rod Holt decided to change the name of the project, partially to distance it from Jef.
"Apple had recently taken out a two page ad in Scientific American, featuring quotes from Steve Jobs about the wonders of personal computers. The ad explained how humans were not as fast runners as many other species, but a human on a bicycle beat them all. Personal computers were "bicycles for the mind." "A month or so after Jef’s departure, Rod Holt announced to the small design team that the new code name for the project was ‘Bicycle’, and that we should change all references to ‘Macintosh’ to ‘Bicycle’.
"Rod’s edict was never obeyed. Somehow, Macintosh just seemed right. It was already ingrained with the team, and the "Bicycle" name seemed forced and inappropriate, so no one but Rod ever called it "Bicycle". For a few weeks, Rod would reprimand anyone who called it "Macintosh" in his presence, but the new name never acquired any momentum."