THE GOING RATE for a stack of ten 3.5in floppy disks seems to be about £10 on eBay. But if you have more money than sense, then why not bid for this one autographed by Apple co-founder Steve Jobs?
There's an obvious answer to this: "because I don't want to spend around £6,000 on technology I can't even use." That's right: RR Auction originally expected the disk to sell for over $7,500, and it has already beaten that with just under a week to go. That price does apparently include postage, but unless it's delivered by a team of trained Sumatran tigers, it's still hard to see how it represents good value.
The disk is labelled Macintosh System Tools 6.0, so you should at least get some software with it, although you do have to go back to 1997 for a Mac with a floppy drive to run it. On the bright side, RR Auction does say the disk is in "fine condition" with "slight brushing" to the black felt tip ink which Jobs used to sign his name.
Bidding has been reasonably swift. The lot opened with a starting bid of $1,000 and has now reached the dizzy heights of $8,000 12 bids later.
The real excitement (for want of a better word) begins on 4 December when the 30-minute rule comes in to play. At that point, the timer hits 30 minutes, and only previous bidders are allowed to up the ante. If anybody does, the timer resets to half an hour, and this continues until enough people ask the obvious question - "what the hell am I doing spending so much on a floppy disk?" - and the winner is decided.
Jobs was notoriously loathed to put his signature on things, which explains some of the interest. And by those standards, $7,500 is something of a snip: earlier this year a Toy Story poster signed by Jobs went for $31,250 and a typo-laden pre-Apple CV eventually sold for $174,000.
It takes all sorts, eh? µ
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