I’m starting a new recurring blog entry called “What If..” Because I think about these things and they trouble me I have to have an outlet in which to vent, and my blog is the perfect venue, because it’s mine and I can do whatever I want. So this installment of “What If..” attempts to answer the all important question, what if Jef Raskin, of Apple Inc., liked to eat Weinerschnitzel instead of McIntosh apples. Would the vast majority of smart computer users today be typing away on Weinies instead of Macs? Would these remarkable computers even still be around today with a name like Weines? “Mac” has supplanted “computer” for an obscenely large group of us. We don’t think about computers, we “iThink” about them, and we like it that way. But, would we be so bold about our Weinies? Would we flock to the Genius Bar every Thursday night to discuss the lasted Weinie upgrades or Weinie problem solving? I wonder. I, for one, might be a little hesitant to go around telling people how awesome my new Weinie is. How big my Weinie’s hard drive is, or how well my Weinie interfaces with my Church Music Master software… you can see where this is going… not pretty. I imagine though, that Raskin was more of an herbivore at the time and so the world was never in any real danger of using Weinies, but it does make an excellent case for legally mandating all our software and computer engineers be vegetarian. I’ve scoured the web for awful fruit and vegetable names and the worst are still far better than Weinie. You might run into problems if they eat fish, who would want to buy the new Flounder? Or, gee I just bought the new Urchin, yeah it’s really great! Or it’s vastly superior, next generation cousin, the Squid? Sound good. Everyone sitting around the conference table with their Squids. Or Slime Eel? They could call them Slimies.. Standing around the water cooler discussing the merits of the new Slimie operating system. Telling your wife you want the new SlimePhone for your birthday. That one just makes me laugh. You get my point though, we really dodged a bullet with the Mac. Something that amazing could have fallen right through the cracks if Raskin hadn’t been a healthy eater. Therefore the moral of this story is this, we as a society cannot be trusted to name our own inventions and therefore must trust computers to do it for us. Mac was probably the last great product name ever, I give you the Porche Cayenne as a case in point. Oh I’m sure there’s some really smart person somewhere who has some really clever reason for why they chose to name a super awesome SUV after a spice, but it still doesn’t change the fact that it’s stupid. So computers will now be responsible for naming products that are likely to be huge hits, and they will also determine which ones are going to be huge hits, so it’s a two-fold process. Computers should also be responsible for naming babies while I’m on the subject. Some governments out there have done the world a huge disservice by allowing their citizens to name their own kids, Batman and Eclipse Glasses, to name just a few. These aren’t celebrities doing this either, seemingly normal citizens are putting kids in therapy with these names. Ok, I’ve gone on long enough. In short, thank you Jef Raskin that you had the good sense to like apples. The world owes you a tremendous debt of gratitude. RIP.