Why I’m not a Mac guy

Despite my algebra level education, I like numbers. I crunch them. I average them. I calculate them. I use them to determining fuel data for my 2006 Nissan Frontier NISMO. I use them for body composition, weight lifting programs, budgets, and mortgages. You’ll find a myriad of home made Microsoft Excel spreadsheets littering My Documents folder (well, now just “Documents” since my upgrade to Windows Vista Home Premium).

And if the Mac ads hold true, then I am a numbers geek and would rather be doing arithmetic than creative movie making or photo slide shows.

But I’ve done the movie making and the photo slide shows on a PC. How different can it be with a Mac? Mac has, arguably, the best design and construction of any computer I’ve seen (and I’m speaking specifically of laptops, mind you, since that’s where the majority of my experience lies). I dig the solid metal construction, the smooth lines, the tight craftsmanship, and, best of all, the back lit keyboard. Why the hell hasn’t PC thought of that?? But I just can’t bring myself to buy a Mac… yet.

With the advent of Microsoft Windows XP (regardless of your opinions), PCs now sport the most stable operating system in history (well, next to the abacus). Mac supporters won’t admit this. And due to the market share that PCs hold, and I’m not just pointing fingers at Microsoft here, you can get PCs and PC parts on the cheap like any Tijuana donkey show. You can’t lose!

With Apple’s shift to Intel based processors almost two years ago, you’d think they couldn’t go wrong. But they have. Despite Virtual Machine from Parallels, which allows Mac users to install and run PC applications on a Mac, Mac still hasn’t developed native support for PC apps. They’re already halfway there, so to me it’s a logical choice.

Microsoft based PCs took a hard hit when Mac went Intel (due mainly to Mac wire walkers falling to their own side with child like glee in running their favorite PC app), but PCs have gained considerable ground with the introductions of the Core Duo, Core 2 Duo (uh, wouldn’t that just be Core Quad?), and the ever hyped Windows Vista. I myself finally upgraded to Vista after an in depth conversation with Pierce late last week. Sure, I’ve recorded more than a few bugs and inconsistencies in addition to a spattering of programs with “know compatibility issues with Windows Vista,” but all in all my switch has been a pleasurable one. Hell, even Andrea hasn’t had much to complain about, and she’s the one to please when it comes to ease of use and familiarity in GUI.

But I digress.

I dig Mac. I’ll even give them the mad, phat, superfly, dope, dumbass, retarded, bomb shit props they deserve. But until I can run any PC app on a Mac without third party software, I’m afraid they won’t be getting my nickel.

… Linux who?

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9 Responses to “Why I’m not a Mac guy”

  1. Rick says:

    Finally, a subject I can comment on with complete authority… you fool, you fell right into my trap! You make a lot of good points… Microsoft is fighting an uphill battle in terms of divergent hardware, think of it… how many manufacturers of little doodads, video cards, modems, sound cards, etc etc are there? Sure, they include installation software with those devices, but on some level Microsoft has to write supporting code to even recognize that hardware. On the Mac side, they control everything (read; did control everything) and so making an HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) was as simple as looking at the scant few pieces of hardware THEY produce, and making sure whatever OS they are creating, supports it.

    But here is where I can shine some light your conundrum. It is called Bootcamp, and it will set you free. Bootcamp is a free piece of software that will partition your hard drive in half, and allow you to format half of the hard drive as NTFS. Then, you simply install Windows XP on your Macbook and BAM… your running both the Mac OS, and Windows XP on one machine. Plus you get the sleek fancy lines.

    You are not emulating anything, and therefore you have complete support for every PC and every Mac program ever created that is supported by OSX Tiger and Windows XP.

    So why didn’t this happen before? RISC vs CISC… it all comes down to that. when Apple made the leap from Reduced Instruction Set Command processors and went to intel based Complex Instruction Set Command processors, they had to change a multitude of other things as well… the motherboard chipset, the video card, the sound card… the list goes on. A Mac is nothing but a PC with a fancy wrapper now, and any Mac guy would be loathe to admit it.

    The only really unique “Mac” aspects even remaining are things like the ROM drive… the keyboard and mouse of course… but this magical “Bootcamp” I had mentioned previously contains drivers for all of these things.

    So now… we just need someone to go the other way. Create a “Bootcamp” for the PC users that will allow not just emulation (as Parallels and Virtual PC allow on the Mac) but a true self contained install that runs independent with full support for all of the software available only to Mac… like that Apple puzzle game.

    -Rick

  2. Sean says:

    A couple of comments re: the previous post (what up, Rick?).

    First, I’ll reiterate your observation that you can’t get rid of Windows entirely and still do everything you do now. I would have switched exclusively to Linux *years* ago, but there are certain things that are simply not supported outside of Windows. This is an important point.

    Second: dual-booting OS’s is like kissing your sister. I’ve done it (dual-booted, not kissed my sister. Get your mind out of the gutter. When you run separate OS’s (in my case, Gentoo and XP) you basically end up with two computers that you have to access sequentially. Data becomes a problem…

    Internet bookmarks and passwords? You need to keep two copies. Browsing history? Can’t be exported. All of that music on your Windows partition? Is on your Windows partition… it appears that a Mac can mount the Windows NTFS partition read-only, but that means that you can’t do anything to your music (other than listen) while running as a Mac. No adding songs, no fixing tags, no creation of playlists…

    That goes for all of your data. Anything you create on the Mac has to be exported via external media (like a thumbdrive). In my experience, you end up using the non-Windows OS for it’s own sake (it’s so cool!!), rather than because it makes you more productive.

    (And if you’re a fan of the super-sweet look, the Panasonic Y5 is a pretty cool box).

    As far as hardware goes, Mac has a simultaneous advantage and disadvantage, which Rick has hinted at… their advantage is that they’re a hardware company and write all of their own drivers (proprietary hardware is also the main reason why a Mac costs so much more than a comparable PC–that cost is also why they don’t have a better market share. BTW, hardware vendors write their own drivers. MSFT has nothing to do with it outside of their “driver signing”). The flip side of that is that they simply don’t support third-party hardware, which means that you can’t upgrade them. Ever.

    Not so much an issue with laptops, granted, but it’s the main reason I will never buy a Mac desktop.

    As far as the “Mac Experience” goes, this guy pretty much sums it up:

    I’ve spent WAY too much time tweaking settings to bend computers to my will (MWAHAHAHAHA) to be comfortable letting MAC OS do everything for me.

    Bah. And get off my lawn.

    -Sean

  3. Rick says:

    I have a love-hate relationship with Macs… Macintosh computers give an air of sophistication, where as PC’s make me think of 14 year olds that like to “wtfpwn nubs” while drinking Mountain Dew and snow boarding down a mountain of naked women while listening to death metal.

    Don’t get me wrong… I am a PC guy, but as I age I am beginning to wonder if I was always a mac guy at heart, and I just couldn’t bring myself to buy one because they are “Computers for Dummies” personified… Can an inanimate object personify something? Who cares… my point is valid.

    I have been playing around with Mac’s here at work for a while, and the small things begin to matter… latches that remain hidden until that last second before the laptop closes. Window scrolling accomplished by placing TWO (yes two) fingers on the touch pad and sliding them up or down. Batteries that have level indicator LED’s build into them as a small thin line of holes on the casing. Backlit Keyboards (as previously mentioned). etcetera etcetera… but is all of that worth the extra two grand? Probably not.

    I recently purchased a new laptop with Vista on it, and in every way it is comparable to the 15″ Macbook Pro.

    2.0 GHz Core 2 duo (no, that isn’t a quad core)
    2 Gigs of RAM
    256 MB Nvidia GeForce 7800
    160 GB HDD
    15.4″ Widescreen
    TV Tuner
    Bluetooth and wireless

    And I paid $1100 dollars at Fry’s Electronics. So every word I have said is just conjecture, and it amounts to nothing when exposed to the light of day… I am a PC guy through and through.

    Mountain Dew anyone?

    (And hey Sean, drop me an email [mortenson_r@hotmail.com])

  4. Sean says:

    Rick-

    I think we’ve wasted a golden opportunity here…

    Despite my algebra level education, I like numbers. I crunch them. I average them. I calculate them. I use them to determining fuel data for my 2006 Nissan Frontier NISMO. I use them for body composition, weight lifting programs

    These guys think that’s absolutely fabulous

    -Sean

    p.s. I’ll shoot you an e-mail when I get home (*grumbles*stupid NMCI*grumbles*)

  5. Sean says:

    p.p.s. Jayme: I’m not sold on the Gray-on-Light-Gray scheme for blockquote’ing…

  6. Jayme says:

    Holy hell… You two sure ganged up on me. FIRST of all, body composition is the official Marine Corps term for tracking height, weight, neck and waist sizes, and body fat. In no way does it suggest meterosexuality, the wearing of leather pants, or hair gel. Enough said.

    Secondly, I wrote this at damn near midnight after a few glasses of wine (YES, wine with dinner, and it was a dry Chablis). I’m not proving my case too well, am I?

    Thirdly, for third, thrice?, I’m not a fan of the blockquote scheme either. I’ll do some tweaking to break it out a bit. [*fixed]

    You two have fun this weekend, you damn dirty apes…

  7. Missy says:

    Could somebody translate all of that jibberish into english for the computer challenged blonde??????????????

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The author.Born in the year of the Dragon, the author grudgingly accepts the fact he has too many interests and not enough time. A cyclist as long as he can remember, an avid yet inconsistent writer since age eleven, and a U.S. Marine since age twenty-one, the author also adds peak bagging, diving, snowboarding, and computers to his list of interests. Incidentally, he is aware of his inability to make a living from any but the Corps. The author accepts this as fact and remains optimistic. Feel free to drop him a line.

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