Monday, September 24, 2007

Why change?

The trip to Mac started as an experiment, a hope that the rumored simplicity of the Macintosh world could entice my beloved but technology-averse spouse into at least a nodding acquaintance with her own email.   Having almost no information, and knowing no Mac-wielding friends, I purchsed a small, used Mac ibook on ebay to play with.  

Oh, the fun we had, me and my iBook!  It was predictable, it didn't crash, it didn't bounce up a variety of spurious pop-up warnings, it was easy to use, it always did the same thing when opened up, it would zoom the screen for easier reading at a moment's notice, and it didn't channel the kind of fun-loving virus that wiped all the document files off my office machine in '99.  Sure, there were differences in some keystrokes, and those window buttons are on the upper left instead of the upper right, but it had a solid, reliable feel that was almost magnetic.  It was an old G3 machine, but consistency is often more important than speed, and the point of this test was to understand its behavior, not its quickness.  

That experiment concluded with a decision to switch to Mac as the home desktop machine.  A suitable machine was located on ebay, a dual-processor G4 that was a perfect match right up to its mid-delivery disappearance.  After a long, itchy post-payment dialog with the seller , the shipping company finally proved his protestations correct by discovering the dusty crate, forgotten under some mushroom in one of their warehouse Wonderlands, and shipping it the last lethargic miles.  

The transition from PC to Mac will be detailed elsewhere, but after about two years of home use, I tired of supporting two OS's (Mac at home, Windows at work) and enduring continuing problems with the work laptop.  The next big step was to get (new!) a Mac laptop (the PowerBook G4, as it seems all Mac nerds know the exact model name and processor of their machine) and began using that at work.  Some transition issues again concluded with a stable and versatile platform.  

My IT friends and I have a kind of don't ask/don't tell relationship, but as I require almost no support from them, things have been pretty painless.   I don't know if it's because the same mind drives hardware and software over at Apple or because of some underlying philosophy, methodology or orientation, but these things are nice: helping when needed, and staying out of the way when I just want to hit the gas and claw that front wheel up into the sky with a loud, productive roar. 


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