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What are some of the worst cases of "vaporware" in the personal computer era?
March 10, 2004 8:04 PM   Subscribe

What are some of the worst cases of "vaporware" in the personal computer era?

I know Wired does a yearly contest, but it is kind of video game-centric and has only been around a few years.
posted by gwint to Computers & Internet (11 answers total)
 
It's video game centric because that's the most closely watched area of the software industry.

Anyway, I'm not sure if the term "vaporware" applies to past products that never materialized, but if it did, I'd imagine Microsoft Bob would be near the top of the list.
posted by malphigian at 8:28 PM on March 10, 2004


Of course, no discussion of vapourware would be complete without somebody making the obligatory Duke Nukem comment.
posted by ph00dz at 8:58 PM on March 10, 2004


Apple's Copland (their supposed next-gen OS before they gave up and bought NeXT) would have to be near the top of the list.
posted by gyc at 8:58 PM on March 10, 2004


Bob, while it is the butt of many jokes, was actually released, so I don't think that it qualifies as vaporware. Copland, while bits and pieces of it eventually dribbled out into OS 9, certainly does.
posted by sad_otter at 9:08 PM on March 10, 2004


If you mention Copland, you might as well mention Pink, Taligent (not vaporware per se, more of a vaporcorp). And it's hard to think of that without thinking of Magic Cap (which sort of segues us to the Audrey).

Apple had lots of orphaned technologies that sounded great but were never widely supported, like Geoport, QuickDraw GX, OpenDoc.

FullWrite 2 took years to be released back in the day, sort of like the OS X version of Nisus. Which vaguely reminds me of Lotus Improv.

Oh yeah, good times...
posted by adamrice at 9:49 PM on March 10, 2004


Cue Cat?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 9:51 PM on March 10, 2004


Cue Cat actually came out. That's an entirely different type of fiasco.
posted by ph00dz at 9:54 PM on March 10, 2004


Whatever happened to Jini?
posted by bondcliff at 7:04 AM on March 11, 2004


Theres a whole bunch of Metafilter Ponys which Matt keeps "meaning to get round to..."
If that counts.
posted by seanyboy at 7:07 AM on March 11, 2004


Xanadu! (Ted Nelson's "everything connected to everything" pipe dream)

RealPC (Windows emulation for Mac) is a recent infamous contendor. FWB, on the verge of bankruptcy, claimed that a new, super-fast version was due "soon". After a while, the board (I think) took over the company and discovered that no one had ever worked on the new version.

Duke Nukem Forever, yeah.

Half Life for Mac.

The Phantom game console is well on the way to vaporware infamy.
posted by mkultra at 7:43 AM on March 11, 2004


Whatever happened to Jini?

jini 2 was just released(added stronger security among other things), and my company is in the process of upgrading. we use jini so our client side programs can interact with the servers.

still, sun should do more to get it in the marketplace
posted by lescour at 9:32 AM on March 11, 2004


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