Many of you have seen Mactracker, Ian Page’s encyclopedia app that compiles a vast amount of data about Apple products. It’s utilitarian, and extremely useful when researching old Macs. The just-launched Shrine of Apple Web site takes its cue from Mactracker, but transforms the concept of a database of Apple products into a modern museum-like site that’s both gorgeous and participatory.
For each product, the Shrine of Apple site includes a number of professionally shot, high-resolution photographs, a short description, original specifications, and related links. An anonymous survey tabulates how many people wanted one, had one, or still own one, and a comment system lets you leave your own reminiscences. For most of the products, there’s also a several-minute video that provides a loving fly-around of the product (I couldn’t help remembering that lengthy scene in “Star Trek: The Motion Picture” when Kirk and Scotty are mooning at the Enterprise from a shuttle).
Needless to say, the Shrine of Apple site isn’t yet complete; it takes time to shoot the photos and make the videos and compile the specifications. I have to imagine that getting access to all the hardware and cleaning it up (nothing I saw had signs of significant usage) is an onerous and expensive task as well. But you can check on what’s coming next — right now it’s the Performa 6320CD. Follow the Shrine of Apple on Twitter or Facebook to be alerted when they add new products.
My only criticism is that the site could use a little proofreading — a number of the product names don’t have quite the right capitalization. However, this is merely a quibble from someone who spends tons of time editing, and I heartily encourage everyone to spend a little time browsing around your favorite Apple products of yesteryear on the Shrine of Apple site.