A Month of Mac

Welp, in a terribly short time (February is already over, jeez) I'll have been a Mac user for one month. I feel by now I can pass some sort of judgment on this Macbook Pro Core 2 Duo 2.16 GHz machine. However, it's entirely from the P.O.V. of a guy who uses his Mac for development day in and day out, so more casual users should keep that in mind.

I definitely get the sense that switching from Windows to Mac has substantially less adjustment pains than going in the opposite direction. Once you adopt the Mac way of doing things, it all makes sense. However, adopting the Mac way of doing things kind of sucks at first. It took me forever to figure out how to "right click" on things with the Mighty Mouse and I was always hitting the expose option unnecessarily. Without a doubt the most annoying thing about Mac is, well, two things:

  1. Substituting the Command key for the Control key on all keystrokes I use (such as Cmd-C for copy)
  2. Breaking the Home / End keys. I cannot overemphasize how much I miss being able to go to the start or finish of a line with one key. Mac uses Cmd-Arrow, but it's not the same.

Other than that, I'm really enjoying this machine. Installing applications is a cinch, and I like how everything is based on BSD. I use a few cool gimmicks like Desktop Manager to enable multiple desktops between which I can easily switch (great for changing code and switching to a browser to check it) and Quicksilver (immediately access anything on your computer in a few keystrokes). One thing I need to do is boost the memory from 1 GB to 2GB (max memory is 3 GB for the Macbook Pro, but the 2 GB modules are far too expensive now) because I've noticed a bit of slowness at times - nothing remotely comparable to Windows, usually. I tend to have a lot of stuff running at the same time.

But most of the time this laptop is great; quiet, fast, and just what I need. Sometimes I think I'd have been just as well off buying a new laptop with a linux distro on it, but since I'm using this machine for development at work it is nice to have everything just function right. I'd definitely recommend this machine to web devleopers, since you can run any OS simultaneously with Parallels. For the person who surfs, does word processing, and stuff like that... it's a bit pricey but you won't be sorry.

Kind of thought I'd have more to say, oh well. Suffice to say: I've noticed the productivity boost just from not having to fuck with Windows. OS X doesn't talk down to me and it doesn't bother me with useless stuff. Nice and clean, the way I like it.

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Written on Tuesday, February 27, 2007