Closets, Cupboards, Street Corners: Where Dead Macs Go To Die

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Dead Macs. You see them sometimes. Upended in a trash bin or shopping cart. Pilfered for parts, poked and prodded by scavengers who have left just the most useless innards behind.

Other times, they’re more intact. This G4 iMac vanished within minutes of being placed outside. The outdoor ones tend to do that, don’t they? Even if you plaster them with signs saying “Broken, honestly, don’t steal this unless you enjoy hoarding plastic junk.” You know, like this:

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People still take them. Wonder what the record fastest time is? Has anyone left a dead Mac outside, then sat down with a stopwatch?

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You have to read the notes on this photo, especially the one covering the sad-looking SE30: “We couldn’t even find a screwdriver that could undo the screws.” Heh.

What do you do with your dead Macs?

All pictures used under Creative Commons license, thanks to the photographers: jonbro, waffler, General Wesc

34 responses to “Closets, Cupboards, Street Corners: Where Dead Macs Go To Die”

  1. Jared says:

    Ill probably be one of them taking them off the street. even if they are broken they do uplift the look of a room. Older ones can be made into fishtanks :P

  2. James says:

    What do I do with dead Macs! Why revive, renew, and reuse! Like many our our listeners, my home is a haven for discarded Macs. I’m I’ve got around 170 of them!

  3. Dundz says:

    Well, they don’t always get snapped up instantly.
    Here in Oz, I found an old 233 MHz iMac, that had been on the sidewalk/footpath for a couple of days. Couldn’t help myself and brought it home. Plugged it in and it booted up.

  4. Applegeek says:

    SE30? Tsk, tsk, Mac Plus in the picture.

  5. iDave says:

    Jesus, what kind of question is that? I give them homes! And thank Jobs that iMac G4 went home with someone before the frost got it.

  6. gilest says:

    John: thanks for spotting my error. Must get these glasses cleaned. Ahem.

  7. Jazzy says:

    I just shed one single, solitary tear.

  8. Neil Anderson says:

    Looks like a sidewalk sale.

  9. Barry says:

    Aren’t macs vulnerable to trojans and Malwares. I noted that malware, spyware and trojan writers are starting to direct their attention toward mac. Steve jobs should make the latest mac osx adequately protected from those kinds of malware.
    I was tempted to buy one of those sweet items. Now I might be changing my mind and be frugal.

  10. Fergus says:

    I’d take them. Make great props for shoots.

  11. Andrew says:

    I was walking down the street about a year ago, and I witness a man placing a TiBook on the curb. I didn’t want to seem like a scavenger, so I rounded the block (giving him enough time to finish taking out his trash), and very quickly snapped it up. I would say that took about five minutes total.

    As it turned out, the only thing wrong with it was that the battery was dead, and that it had a wonky install of Tiger, with several components missing. I took it home, cleaned it up, hooked it up to my old yo-yo adapter, installed a new 512MB RAM chip, performed a good “erase and install” of Tiger, and voila. The only thing I needed was to order a new battery.

    I’m typing this post on it right now.

  12. Andrew says:

    I was walking down the street about a year ago, and I witness a man placing a TiBook on the curb. I didn’t want to seem like a scavenger, so I rounded the block (giving him enough time to finish taking out his trash), and very quickly snapped it up. I would say that took about five minutes total.

    As it turned out, the only thing wrong with it was that the battery was dead, and that it had a wonky install of Tiger, with several components missing. I took it home, cleaned it up, hooked it up to my old yo-yo adapter, installed a new 512MB RAM chip, performed a good “erase and install” of Tiger, and voila. The only thing I needed was to order a new battery.

    I’m typing this post on it right now.

  13. Doogie says:

    John,

    SE/30 had ADB, but that SE looks like it has a connector under the floppy. Was that a mouse or keyboard connection?

    -Doogie

  14. Doogie says:

    Oh yeah – old Macs go to my kids or my Mom, whoever is in more dire need.

    When they are done, they come back to go into my museum/garage where they sit like they’re on the island of misfit toys. Every once in a while they come out and get booted up, but strictly for entertainment. My kids are typically beside themselves when they see that 9″ black and white monitor come to life. (If they knew I paid twice what it cost for my new MacBook Pro…)

    -Doogie

  15. Geffen says:

    I picked one up a G4 Tower 450MHz at the recycling centre. Didn’t give the boy chance to put it in the bin. That’s the fastest you can snatch one. Or can you do faster?

  16. Wallace Adrian D'Alessio says:

    Here in Ohio only the really old ones get thrown out. There aren’t enough PPC G5s and Older Intels to be considered too unusable.

  17. Wallace Adrian D'Alessio says:

    LEM swappers will snatch ’em fast to chop for the swap list.

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