"I wish I had a nickel for every time somebody asked me that," Steve Jobs said as the question "Why doesn't Apple offer a stripped down Mac that is more affordable" flashed up behind him during Macworld 2005 keynote.
Today, that stripped-down computer celebrates its seventh anniversary. The Mac mini has had its demise predicted nearly as often as the iPod classic. But the durable little machine keeps chugging on and has inspired everything from a fan of RAID machines to media centers, car stereos and even apple pie.
While the Mac mini began its life as a low-end PowerPC G4 machine, current build-to-order models can meet or exceed stock-configuration iMacs. They've become smaller, more powerful, yet are still an excellent switcher machine for those who already own a monitor and keyboard. They also can function as a server or serve a variety of needs for homes and businesses.
Here's to you, Mac mini. I expect to still find you around for years to come. You can check out the original introduction from 2006 below.