“The iPod is the modern-day equivalent of the Samurai sword” | iLounge News


“The iPod is the modern-day equivalent of the Samurai sword”

“It is a bit emasculating to admit this, but portable electronics have replaced sidearms in our culture. I draw upon the Japanese katana for my analogy for several reasons. First, the katana was much more than a mere weapon or cutting tool. It was a portable symbol of status, power, and class. The warrior class, the Samurai, were actually quite numerous. At their height they were nearly 10% of the population of Japan. Before 1876, wearing the katana conveyed to the casual observer that the wearer of the long and short swords possessed a rank and status of an elite group.

The simple fact that people are willing to pay hundreds of dollars more for an iPod, when equal technology is available in a less impressive-looking package, points directly to this analogy. People will pay more for a status symbol, and in doing so, they have made the iPod one of the most important cultural icons today.”

« Updated: Audio Outfitters looking for beta testers for new iPod product

Pacific Rim Technologies announces iShield II aluminum case »

Related Stories



You guys might want to go back and read the entire article at www.penny-arcade.com , it might make more sense if you read it in full.

It is an unwieldy analogy, but I tried my hamfisted best with it. 

I am speaking in very broad, general terms when I say that there is equivalent tech out there for less money.  I’m speaking about players that are:

1) roughly the same size (I’m not going to get into fractions of an inch here)
2) have a large capacity drive
3) play compressed music files.

We are all clearly residents of the technology arena, so our tech pedigree tends to precede us, and perhaps cloud our judgement of the general populace.  Imagine for example, your *mother*, going into CompUSA for the first time to purchase a music player for her nephew.  How would her perception of “usability” come into play?  Or would the reputation of the iPod form a basis for her judgement?  I think that the latter is more true, for the benefit of apple.  It really *is* a cultural icon, and I think that is one of the only things that the lay person understands when it comes down to it, spinning touch wheels nonwithstanding.

That said, I really, really like the iPod.  I think that it is a great innovation in style, usability, and technology.  To me, that’s what Apple is all about, so hats off!

Best wishes,


Posted by Storm Shadow on January 24, 2004 at 4:21 PM (CST)

Page 3 of 3 pages  < 1 2 3

If you have a comment, news tip, advertising inquiry, or coverage request, a question about iPods/iPhones/iPad or accessories, or if you sell or market iPod/iPhone/iPad products or services, read iLounge's Comments + Questions policies before posting, and fully identify yourself if you do. We will delete comments containing advertising, astroturfing, trolling, personal attacks, offensive language, or other objectionable content, then ban and/or publicly identify violators.

Commenting is not available in this channel entry.
Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter


Recent News

Recent Reviews

Recent Articles

Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter


iLounge is an independent resource for all things iPod, iPhone, iPad, and beyond.
iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apple TV, Mac, and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc.
iLounge is © 2001 - 2014 iLounge, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy