Wednesday 27 October 2004


At the weekend I got into a discussion, with friends, concerning the phenomenon that is the PlayStation brand. With PSP (Sony's new handheld resembles the Atari Lynx) and PS3 on the horizon, my memory was jogged!

In the early 90's Sony and Nintendo embarked on the creation of a CD-ROM drive (PlayStation) for the Super NES. Magazine editorials excitedly published concept drawings and (I think) early production hardware photos - the drive sat beneath the console. However, when Sega released the elephantine Mega-CD to mixed reviews (the build quality was horrendous and software such as Night Trap courted controversy from conservative quarters), Nintendo halted development and/or partnered with Philips (co-creator of the CD format) on a rival project (CD-I).

Sony took the knowledge it had acquired, extensive R&D and produced PlayStation itself. Fast forward a decade and the PS brand enjoys a virtually impervious market dominance. Sega struggles as a software company and Nintendo has failed to shake its (lucrative) kids n' cartridge image.

Somewhat off topic. It appears that Firefox (version 1.0 Preview Release) has damaged my installation of Mac OS X 10.3.5. Whenever the browser was open it continuously accessed the HDD. This resulted in a kernel panic following a crash. After starting up in single-user mode (and running /sbin/fsck -f) disc errors were found! So, time for a backup and clean install once 10.3.6 is released. Thanks Mozilla!

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