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Early unaired Mac ad even more smug and obnoxious than reviled ‘Genius’ ads [video]

Updated Dec 19th, 2018 8:32PM EST

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Apple’s (AAPL) history of creating advertisements featuring smug, cocky “geniuses” goes back well before the recent “Genius” ads and even before the old-school “Mac-versus-PC” ads. In spite of the company’s history, 9to5Mac has found that current Google (GOOG) software engineer and Macintosh co-creator Andy Hertzfeld has posted a video on his Google+ page showing an unaired Mac ad from 1983 that was deemed “too self-congratulatory” for humans to stomach.

The ad features several Apple engineers positively gushing about their own work and gives them hilariously self-important titles such as “Hardware Wizard” to show viewers just how “magical” the Macintosh is.

“Demonstrating a Macintosh is the only way to do it,” said then-Apple engineer Bill Atkinson during the ad. “I can’t really describe it to you in words, but if I can get you to sit in front of it and play with it, you won’t let go of it.”

A young Hertzfeld himself piped up at the end of the ad to say that Apple’s wizards “were just trying to make something incredibly great… and I think we did!”


Brad Reed
Brad Reed Staff Writer

Brad Reed has written about technology for over eight years at and Network World. Prior to that, he wrote freelance stories for political publications such as AlterNet and the American Prospect. He has a Master's Degree in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University.