Sunday, October 26, 2008

Case for MacBook Pro Versus PC Notebook

I've been getting a lot of questions from hardcore PC users about my MacBook Pro and thought others might have similar questions about how I like it after almost a year.

If a user wants an easier computing life with minimal effort, a better chance of compatibility with certain popular programs whose manufacturers refuse to offer as OSX-compatible programs and don't mind Microsoft's obsession with licensing and intrusion via updates -- they're turning a bunch of desktop screens black in China -- continue to go with PCs. That's the easier choice and it's less expensive in the short term, and it's good for people who just want to get along. It's probably better to use for games.

If a user wants the most portable notebook that can adapt to your creativity, a magnetic power cord attachment that makes setting up and breaking down a snap, faster start-ups and shut-downs, a hard disk security wipe utility built-in to the operating system, minimal weight and bulk, and the ability to easily run any operating system you chose as a virtual machine, select a MacBook Pro. Of course, you'll need a legal copy of Windows to run that as a virtual machine, but think of it as a slave to Apple's master. Running MS Windows as a virtual machine is quite different than running an MS program for Macintosh machines. A person can easily run Linux, Windows XP and Tiger OSX simultaneously, while also being online, and the MacBook Pro pushes right along.

Yes, there's a practical reason for wanting that. Apple is less hassle to use as an online computer for blogging and such, and the programs are easier to access with the dock toolbar that is activated by running the mouse cursor to the bottom of the screen. Some programs only run on Windows so that virtual machine is often on fro a favorite program. Linux is for messing around and it has a decent office suite of it's own. Linux may also be good for those venturing on to a higher level of computing, as it is gradually pushing into territory long-held by Microsoft. A guy I know says his corporation is switching its servers to Linux, a huge move for them. Ubuntu Linux 8.04 LTS is simple to set up, but still has the kick of a system that will allow the user to develop programs and familiarize themselves with computer code.

Another thing that I like about Apple, is that they are serious about innovation. While Microsoft has "made its bones" with tricky licensing agreements computer manufacturers and lawsuit threats, the Windows operating system and Microsoft Office, Apple has countless programs that help people do things with their computers, and something called an i-Phone among its accomplishments.

Apple grows its business with happy customers, not with people who have no other choices but to buy the Apple product. The pop-up docking station keeps desired programs within easy reach at all times. My one gripe is only 2 USB ports, but that is easily remedied with a Belkin 4-port thumb hub that I throw in my backpack. Another thing is that programs from someone such as a bank or online broker might not work with OSX and Alltel says a Blackberry can't tether with a MacBook Pro, though I read that's it's being done. They'll come around. I'm not going back to my PC dependence. I like losing my chains. Apple also requires more OSX updates than I thought, but I can survive. I haven't seen where they use these updates to later attack customers as Microsoft has. I believe Apple updates are about making everything work better for the customer, that the customer comes first.

I also stand corrected on previously scolding Apple on not including a 56k modem in their machines. They saw the trend of USB modems before anyone else did. I have no use for a 56k modem and dial-up became useless as content providers demand the ability to download faster than the 40k I was getting.

It all comes down to choices, and which company is better at providing those choices for their customers.

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