peter lindsay

Physics Teacher,


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What was the first device to use the "i" prefix?

Apple have just won a billion dollar settlement over Samsung because the samsung galaxy tablet looks too much like an iPad. Does this just expose the racism in the patent law system in the US. Afterall the iPod iPad iPhone thing that is so synonymous with Apple wasn't even their idea. The earliest I know of is the Compaq iPaq which pre-dates the iPod by a couple of years. Anyone got an earlier one?

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    Lejan .

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    Aug 28 2012: Maybe iDiotic ? It's not an decice though, yet somewhat related to the iHype... ;o)
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    Aug 27 2012: The very first device to use the prefix I was a human being, if you do not mind my stating the obvious. It is nearly the first word that all people say once they realize that they are an individual separate from their mother. That is why it is so effective in marketing and in patenting. It harkens to a self centered place in humanity's heart.
  • Aug 27 2012: They must have stolen it from the Eskimo people who famously called their small, semi-mobile domiciles iGloo. They were state of the art technology at the time.

    Or maybe not, that trademark must have expired 2500 years ago.. give or take.

    P.S. is the "little i" before the name trademarked or is it the whole name iPad or iPhone? I haven't studied up on this subject, I was just interjecting some humor.
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      Aug 27 2012: Why stop there?

      These are the Inuit peoples of Canada. Do they get royalites?
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    Aug 27 2012: Back in the 70s there was an early and analog predecessor, called 'Etch A Sketch' or 'mag''i''c board' ... ;o)

    Slim design, duo rotary knob input, ultra fast reset, 10'' monochrome passive silver display, limitted graphic and text processing abilities, no RAM, no HD, moderate price, no batteries needed ...

    At that time it was as good and close as it could get ... :o)
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      Aug 28 2012: It might just be me but an iPad seems about as useful as an Etch-a-sketch!
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        Aug 28 2012: Hey... Etch-a-sketch is awesome... Why are you insulting Etch-a-sketch?
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        Aug 28 2012: Yet both work for 8 years old, big time! ;o)
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    Aug 27 2012: The first time I've seen a name like iPad was Apple's iPod. I can definitely see that they probably weren't the first ones to use a name like that, but they were the first ones to market the name successfully.

    The i in those names are supposed to stand for Internet. All these devices were supposed to be devices of the internet, or digital age, but there are a lot more interpretive meanings too. For example, the i could mean that the device is personal just for each owner, or the i could stand for innovation, imagination, intuitiveness, and the i also makes it rebellious against the norm that all proper names need to start with a capital letter.

    And all those matches Apple's identity almost perfectly: they make devices that are personal, innovative/trend-starting, intuitive, rebellious of the norm, and of the internet. And this correlation make so much sense, that it's too perfect to be a coincidence. In my opinion, the i named products from Apple are an extremely well done and well thought out display of brand identity, which a ton of other companies lack. Imo this is one of the biggest key factors to contribute to Apple's success.
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      Aug 27 2012: The iPaq was released in April 2000 and was the market leading PDA for several years. They are actually still in production but are aimed at professional users rather than the general public.
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        Aug 28 2012: So this was the first i-prefix name? Hmm, very interesting...

        I wonder what they were really thinking when they gave the product that name...
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    Aug 27 2012: only patents count - edison often only "improved" an already existing design/creation. he just knew how to own stuff. nothing's changed. all that money still couldn't save steve jobs from cancer, could it..
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    Aug 27 2012: One of the core competencies required for ongoing success these days is play the iP game, as in intellectual property - Patents and Trademarks.