I use a MacBook as my primary computer at work, it has the following specs:
- 2.4 GHz Core duo
- 4 GB RAM
- 180 GB 7200 RPM harddisk
- DVD writer
- 13″ display
- Mini-DVA out
- Mac OS X 10.5.6
It’s white. It has OK battery life 3–4 hours if I’m just doing normal text-based stuff.
The fact that the computer is white has attracted a lot of attention of a negative kind (particularly from “men of a certain age”). When they point out that I have a “fancy computer”, which is hardly macho. I kindly point out that I wasn’t willing to pay the $100 premium Apple had placed on the same computer in black. I also point out that it isn’t very macho — if that is your bag — to be so concerned with colour schemes.
Why do I have a Mac? I couldn’t find a laptop supplied by NTNU’s IT people that I could guarentee would run Linux well, and I wanted to try some development work with WebObjects. That was all.
I had been using Linux (Ubuntu, which I also have on this Mac) as my main OS for a couple of years beforehand. However, moving back to OS X wasn’t really a problem. I like Linux a lot, I like the whole idea a lot.
What do I use the Mac for? For example:
- surfing the web
- reading email
- writing wordprocessing documents
- using spreadsheets
- using databases
- using Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign
- using PuTTy
- using bash
- recording and editing sound and video
- listening to music
- talking to my parents
That was what I came up with off the top of my head. What I have is a machine that lets me connect to the Internet, projectors and printers without issue. I can guarentee with 95% certainty that I will be able to get my work done without hinderence from the hardware or software.
It runs Linux or Windows too. I use Linux for a few applications that I simply can’t get to compile under Apple’s UNIX (NSS was one), and I did daly with Windows XP in order to run XMLSpy, but I gave up when I realized that NTNU doesn’t have a site lisence for XMLSpy.
My only issues with the MacBook are the poor build quality of the machine itself (this is apparently a problem with a number of machines built around the time I got mine), and the general rubbishness of Apple’s UNIX. I like pretty much everything else (not HFS+ of course, but you knew that already).
I’m not an Apple fanboy (any more*), but I am a bit of an iPhone fanboy, but I guess that’s fair enough considering my day job 😉 I am not a fan of Microsoft’s products, but this has to do with the fact that they often don’t work. I used Windows for many years as a graphic designer and IT admin, then later as a technical writer and programmer. Windows is OK, it isn’t as good as UNIX when it comes down to doning what I do, but is probably fine for 99% of people. Linux is still my preference because it just seems to do everything I need to do really well, and without having to talk to anyone about software acquisition. However, I see that the Linux laptop is still not quite ready.
The white PC I use is a tool; it’s quite a good one for me.
*I used to be an Apple fanboy when I worked in the print industry, but then again you would have been too, back then.