So I'm not one of those compulsive Apple blogger guys, obviously, but ... my God. Have you seen the new Mac mini? It's just gorgeous looking. I need to check one out in person, but I suspect that I'll just be more impressed when that happens. I mean, look at this thing.

I'm a big fan of simplicity and noise-free computing, and this looks like some kind of high-water mark for design. It even has a decent and logical assortment of ports for the first time (including HDMI and SD, though I'm not clear why anyone would want Firewire 800 on an entry-level machine). It supports up to 8 GB of RAM. Has decent processors. And 802.11n.

There's only one problem with this thing that I can see--it starts at a too-high $699, or about $200 more than I think it's worth. (And while I love Apple's hardware, I couldn't care less about Mac OS X. I would wipe that out immediately.) But they've gotten the hardware design just right here. And unlike the previous Mac mini versions, which required a spatula-type tool to remove the lid to get at the memory, this one has a nice looking removable panel on the bottom that provides instant access to the guts you need to access. Like so:



Classic. I don't need a new PC right now, and I certainly can't afford to spend that much money, especially for something unnecessary. But this speaks to the heart of what makes Apple's products so popular, I think. It doesn't matter what makes sense. You just want one.

Must resist.