NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Intel (INTC - Get Report) took celebrity tech endorsements to another level last week with the appointment of Black Eyed Peas front man will.i.am as the firm's new "director of creative innovation," highlighting the chip giant's desire to challenge Apple's (AAPL - Get Report) legion of cool.
As the dominant force in the semiconductor market, Intel's chips are widely deployed on PCs and laptops, but the tech giant has yet to make its presence felt in the booming mobile device space. Step up will.i.am, who sported an Intel ID badge at a recent company conference in California.
Like other manufacturers, tech companies are keen to get their products out in front of as many eyeballs as possible, and Intel/will.i.am is just the latest in long list of strange celebrity/Silicon Valley combos. Remember Jerry Seinfeld's ad with Microsoft's (MSFT - Get Report) Bill Gates? What about Mr. T's efforts at selling storage for HDS or John Cleese using his unique brand of British humor to sell Compaq gear long before it was swallowed up by Hewlett-Packard (HPQ - Get Report)?
Even Apple's iPad has had its brushes with fame, as Silicon Valley seeks out ever more unusual ways to hawk its products. Read on for more details of tech's strangest celebrity endorsements: