Last week religious leader Steve Jobs announced that Apple was moving to the Intel platform, leaving his followers stunned, confused and feeling a little betrayed.
"Think differently" was the company's marketing slogan and mantra of the Apple faithful, a very like-minded bunch of individuals who pretty much "think identically" when it comes to their opinion of Wintel PCs.
Being different meant using a PowerPC microprocessor, running the Mac operating system (MacOS), have only one button on your mouse and not contributing to the evil empires of Microsoft and Intel.
The current version of MacOS is called Tiger and is the latest in a long line of releases named after cats. The next release has amusingly been codenamed Leopard, a cat not known for changing its spots.
However, it's all change for Apple users, who will need to replace their software next time they upgrade their hardware. Apple is promising an emulation system to run old applications, but experience tells me that it won't be a satisfactory solution.
Steve Jobs is a brave man. Not only has he made a monumental decision that Apple should think less differently from PC manufacturers, but is risking a serious cash flow disaster.
Common wisdom states that you should never announce a new platform before you can deliver it. Worried about purchasing obsolete models, punters will stop buying and wait for the new ones to be released.
According to Jobs, the first Intel based Macs are over a year away from production.
Luckily, Apple has a few billion pounds worth of iPod revenue to rely on, and enough money in the bank for a year's worth of rainy days, so it is likely to remain solvent even if short-term sales are affected.
So I guess now was as good a time as any to upset the Apple cart.
Last Monday, Jobs told Apple software developers, at their annual conference in San Francisco, that he envisioned some amazing products for them, and he couldn't imagine how Apple would build them with the PowerPC chipset.
Some developers called security when they saw Intel CEO Paul Otellini enter the building and most wiped their eyes in disbelief when he joined Jobs on stage.
This must be the single biggest coup in Intel's history, leaving major rivals IBM and Motorola, who manufacture the PowerPC chips without a major vendor.
So is now a good time to buy a new Mac?
Perhaps for Apple debutants, it is best to wait for the new 'Mactel' era to dawn. For the mature Apple user, with a large existing investment in software, it might be a good idea to snap up one of fastest boxes it is ever likely to run on.
Of course, Apples are often bought for aesthetic rather than practical reasons and perhaps Steve Jobs' decision will not be that great a test for his faithful followers.
* Chris Tomlinson is managing director of intenet consultancy Webxpress. This and other unedited articles can be found at Webxpress.com. Email: email@example.com