"Trevor, I love how you wade in to almost any topic with your own biased opinion (hey, we all have them) and whenever anyone calls you on it, you immediately say that they are biased and/or too stupid for you to waste your time on. You're on the Ted Dziuba tech journalism track I take it."
There are lots of areas where I absolutely have a bunch of biased opinions and enjoy flinging them about just to watch people squirm. Apple is - rather emphatically - not one of them.
Oh, go back a decade and have this conversation with me in 2004 and I absolutely loathed Apple. Not because the product was all that bad, but because I really strenuously disliked that people that bought and used Apple products.
Today? A lot less so. Maybe I'm mellowing in my old age, but I far prefer OSX to Windows 8. I think the iPad is the better tablet (though I maintain I need Android for my phone, but that's because of the tech tools I load up on it.) I see the value in a lot of what Apple produce, and I even see the value in the ecosystem and it's mainstream acceptance.
To put in bluntly: Apple is mainstream, and their walled garden of a constrained ecosystem has some very real and tangible benefits when it comes to finding "an app for that", an add-on, or what-have-you.
But that doesn't mean I think Apple is "cool". I have traditionally thought of "cool" as something exclusionary rather than exclusionary, and there's rather a lot of science to back that up. Thus, while I don't have a particular issue with everyone rushing out to buy iTat, I do think that examination of Apple's "coolness", name cachet, recognisability, and existence as a vehicle for social participation are potentially separate (though interrelated) phenomena that deserve to be examined more carefully.
I might accept your concept that I'm just stampeding around with a chip on my shoulder about Apple if I thought for a moment that I had one. I can name for you a list of companies/products where I have easily identifiable chips on my shoulder. (Let's have a conversation about Sony...) Apple isn't one of them, and it hasn't been for years.
So that makes this entire thread truly fascinating to me. I am honestly and truly approaching the study of Apple and it's acolytes from a dispassionate and only vaguely interested standpoint. It is all a matter of intellectual curiosity for me; Apple has become one of the companies about which I don't have any strong feelings at all.
But lo! There are some passions running through this thread! Question the almighty Apple and her magnificent phenomena and what comes crawling out from under the rocks is absolutely hilarious!
I have no more interest in Apple than an entomologist does in the anthill he pokes. But what the ants get up to when you poke it...that I find fascinating.