Apple Inc., the Californian computer company,
has been marked by unparalleled success over
the past three and a half decades. Like no other
company, it has succeeded in shifting the focus
of use from utility to coveted possessions when
it comes to computers and electronic entertainment
devices such as the iPod, the iPhone and
In addition, each of the products in the i-family
have changed their product genres technologically
and ergonomically to such an extent that
not only have all competitors adopted these new
'user guidances', but hundreds of complementary
products have been created around these
products as well, from a wide range of accessories
to docking stations, i. e., veritable radios
with external speakers for the iPods and iPhones
that allow users to experience the stored music
The iPhone has compelled all manufacturers of
mobile phones to add smart phones with touch
sensitive screens, the touch phones, to their programs.
And the iPad will fundamentally transform
the handling of video and news as well. Since the
introduction of the iPhone, more than 200 000
special application programs, the so-called apps,
have been made available for these i-devices.
In their product genres, these devices have
each caused a paradigm shift: they are both
leading and cult products, and they represent a
development that has leveraged the mobile Internet
and delocalized the act of surfing from the
home to almost anywhere.
The book comments upon this process of 'disruptive
technologies', which has taken place only
very rarely in the history of technology and design.
They leaf through the preconditions and position
these innovative devices in product-historical, social,
and psychological contexts. Spiegel magazine
correctly wrote: 'The i-cult. How Apple seduces
the world.' But beyond any seduction, the
'iCosmos' represents a changed handling of information,
media, and entertainment.
The internationally known architecture and design
historian Volker Fischer was deputy director
of the Deutsches Architekturmuseum in Frankfurt
am Main for over ten years. Since 1995 he has
built up a new design department in the Museum
for Applied Arts in Frankfurt; in addition to his museum
work he teaches history of architecture and
design at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Offenbach.
Volker Fischer is already represented in Edition
Axel Menges by books on Stefan Wewerka,
Richard Meier, the Commerzbank in Frankfurt by
Norman Foster and Hall 3 of Messe Frankfurt am
Main by Nicholas Grimshaw.