Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Going on a month...

I have been a Mac user for one month now and wanted to take a moment to blog more of my experiences and views as I have gained more experience and knowledge on this platform.

First off, it is hard to believe it has been a month! I've done a lot on my new machine since then, but there is still quite a bit that I want to do. For the last week or so, I have all but shut down my home PC. I consider myself just about fully switched now.

Disclaimer: I am still using my PC at work. I don't really have a choice in the matter because of our network / security / whatever policy.  Since I use the PC at work it helps further polarize the differences between the two.

Latest observations:

1. Using a Mac feels like a "treat'. After I get back from work I smile when I think about using my computer. It's not just blah, more of the same like what I get at work. I tend to approach it in a different way- it's not just about getting something done, it's also about the experience. 

2. It has been fun to show other people (family, friends, etc).  One of the first thing that they notice is "all those icons" on the bottom of the screen.  I really like having everything at the touch of my finger.  The more I use the icons to launch an app, the less I want to use the start menu on the PC.  It just makes more sense that way.  

3. I find myself somewhat disappointed by lag when I am running my Windows VM. However, I think this will be pretty easy remedied when I upgrade the memory. Still haven't gotten around to that yet- my wallet needs a break for a bit.  

4. I'm starting to notice that there are a lot less apps "out there" for the Mac as compared to the PC.  That's ok because I'm running a Windows VM but... there are some things that I would expect to be out there. For instance, there is an iPad application out there that allows you to extend your desktop to the iPad wirelessly (displaylink). Ironically, there is no Mac version of it.  Another one is a gmail download utility. I take some of these tools for granted on the PC.

5. Portability is great, even for a 17".  Battery Life is not as good as I hoped- seems like I get about 5-6 hours tops. I am sure my extra upgrades are contributing to the lower battery life- it's advertised as up to 7. Still not bad, especially compared to my work PC which is half the power and about the same battery life. 

6. I am definitely taking more notice of other "Mac users" that are out there. I often wonder "why are they Mac users?" I notice pictures on Facebook, links from twitter, comments on blogs, twitter, etc. My initial stereotype of "Mac people" seems to be a little off: more eccentric, pop-culture lovers, etc. I'm finding that there are quite a few people similar to my background- developers, musicians, etc. A bit of right brain and left. It also includes people who just don't want to accept the mainstream / mediocrity from the PC experience. 

I'll close off the entry like this: is it worth getting a Mac? After the first month, I can definitely say "Yes!". I have been really happy with my decision and continue to enjoy it.  Despite my best intentions, I still haven't been able to get real deep in some of the functionality that I originally purchased the Mac for... ie, video editing, music editing, photo editing, etc. But from what I am experiencing so far it is doing a fine job and I am learning new things on a daily basis.

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