the Clarus iBook

Once I saw the new iBooks I KNEW I had to have one. I ordered one but quickly discovered it would take 3-5 weeks to arrive! When I saw the pictures of the first iBooks to hit retail stores, I fired off an email, hoping I could get one of the few iBooks they had. Luckily, I was able to get the last one! After receiving it in all of its glory, the first thing I thought was, "hmm, I bet I could put a big picture in behind that clear plastic case!". I carefully unscrewed the 4 screws and took off the back case, revealing the metal below:

Here I am holding the naked iBook

That swiss-cheese looking stuff seems to be padding - so feel free to kick your iBook knowing Apple has padded the LCD ;-) Ok just kidding, but its nice to know its there. I noticed a white strip of material covering the glowing apple, probably some sort of sheet to diffuse the light. After cutting it away with an x-acto knife (man i love those things), I revealed the apple underneath. I just needed to turn on the iBook to see it glow, and MAN was it bright - way brighter than it used to be.

The apple is much brighter without that diffuser in place!

Since i was going to WWDC in a few days, I decided to put everyone's favorite developer mascot, Clarus, in front of the light. I measured the apple and printed out Clarus ('z' in the Cairo font if anyone is wondering).

Vinay holds Clarus in place - a perfect fit!

So, we decided to insert Clarus. It was rather simple, we created 2 tabs on either side of Clarus and inserted her. We then taped her down.

Inserting Clarus, isn't this fun?

We closed up the case to discover Clarus was virtually invisible when the iBook was asleep. How cool!

Can you see Clarus? Nope, didn't think so.

But, of course, when Clarus is backlit, she is niiice and bright. This picture is slightly blurry, but you can see Clarus much better in the full picture. There are better pictures below.

You can see her on the other side of a crowded room!

It was fun at WWDC watching everyone do a double take when they saw my iBook. THe first few days, nobody had seen an iBook so I was swamped with people wanting to play with it. Everyone loved it, and even though nearly everyone there had a Titanium, many of them were jealous! After playing with it they suddenly realized Clarus was in the apple. Sadly, many people said "Oh a Moof!", "Look, its Moof!", "Oh the dog thing!", and/or "He looks great in there!". For future reference, its Clarus, the dogcow, who is female. Moof is the sound she makes. For more information, check out Apple's articles on Clarus. Aaaaanyways, I was sitting in the front row at WWDC and I saw Steve Jobs take a peek at my new iBook when he was taking a swig of water on the sidelines and had a perplexed look on his face and later when he looked back he smiled. I didn't believe it at first, but 2 other people sitting in the front row near me later confirmed it - yep, Steve Jobs himself smiled at my iBook :-) I'm proud of my custom iBook, and now that WWDC is over, I think I'm going to put a blue transparency in to create a nice bright blue glowing apple instead of the standard white one. Maybe a pumpkin for October, or other colors/graphics for other occasions, who knows ;-) I hope you liked my new iBook, below are some more pictures of the final product!

Flash on!

Flash off!

the iBook in front of a 22" ACD

Pretty neat huh?

Hope you liked my iBook hack - Mike Margolis
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