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Now that Apple is Windows-compatible, to switch or not to switch to Mac? - Page 3

post #31 of 151
I would like to mention that I think Apple has been very innovative and ahead of their time in their designs: One of the first home (personal) computer systems First user-friendly GUI First mass use of the mouse One of the first companies to make digital cameras accessible to consumers One of the first companies to implement flat-screen technology One of the first companies to make PDA’s with handwriting recognition First usable implementation of a portable MP3 player in conjunction with specific software Ok, so off the top of my head, that’s 7 innovations. And how many succeeded in letting Apple gain a significant share of its market within 5 years of being released? Only 2. Why? Because Apple has a great R&D department and a horrible commercial implementation / viable department. I like how Apple try’s to innovate the market, but I don’t like their Sony-like Betamax vs. VHS tactics. However, unlike Apple, Sony has a fantastic overall track record when it comes to releasing items and gaining monetary income / revenue from its expenditures. Jon.
post #32 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by imageWIS
I like how Apple try's to innovate the market, but I don't like their Sony-like Betamax vs. VHS tactics. However, unlike Apple, Sony has a fantastic overall track record when it comes to releasing items and gaining money income / revenue from its expenditures.

Jon.

I agree with your sentiments. I have a lot of respect for Apple. I think that generally the design of their products are superb and often ahead of their time. However, I think that their aim to protect their products with incompatibility is generally very short sighted and pretty negative for many consumers. In the long run, I think what we are seeing right now is sort of an eventual capitulation by Apple to a reality that in order to be competitive and to build superior products, you need to allow for a certain level of compatibility.
post #33 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTGuy
I agree with your sentiments. I have a lot of respect for Apple. I think that generally the design of their products are superb and often ahead of their time. However, I think that their aim to protect their products with incompatibility is generally very short sighted and pretty negative for many consumers. In the long run, I think what we are seeing right now is sort of an eventual capitulation by Apple to a reality that in order to be competitive and to build superior products, you need to allow for a certain level of compatibility.

Razor's edge. Same thing that MS hates. No stranglehold means less $$$. Like MS, they are slowly coming to that realization.

Now about what I mentioned earlier.. bouncing dock was just an example of fluff I gave - there are a lot of much worse offenders.

No company today has been able to make any sort of interface innovation that matters. Everything is just a tweaked rehash and Apple is especially guilty of that. There is indeed academic research in the CHI field but nothing that any company has the cojones to implement. Apple is locked in to the Mac "look and feel" while M$ is just struggling to keep the underparts of Windows from exploding. For some interesting but as of yet unimplemented ideas, read the late Jeff Raskin's (yes, THAT Jeff Raskin) The Humane Interface. I can give you a few dozen more CHI/UI reading suggestions but my point is that usability is a joke in general. No company has done anything worthwhile. There has not been a significant change or paradigm shift since Xerox Lab's mouse/gui idea...

Computers are still stupid and unnecessarily complex. The "friendly" PC (ie Mac) is still this way. Windows has made improvements but it is still as complex on the surface as ever. Some Linux/BSD distros have had EXCELLENT ideas but they do not have sufficient leverage/capital/userbase to make a dent.

See, now I am ranting. I remember when I was working on my senior project in University, the more books I went through the more angry I got with the blatant stupid design decisions of current OSes.
post #34 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by imageWIS
Why? Because Apple has a great R&D department and a horrible commercial implementation / viable department.
Then again, it is only recently that Apple's been about design. Old Apples may have been better built (and correspondingly more expensive) than their competition, but they followed the same beige paradigm as everyone else. Well, they've done the all-in-one forever, but while that may be an advantage when your screen is a beautiful 15-20" widescreen LCD it isn't when your screen is smaller than your competition's and grey-scale instead of color. What makes Apple different and better today - ever since Jobs tapped Ive for the first iMac, really - is their design. Build quality is probably only a little better than the competition, and most of the parts are the same stuff everyone else uses. (Small-n evidence aside, Consumer Reports' surveys indicate greater reliability from Apple than other firms in the industry.) However, the rest of the world hasn't moved beyond the big ugly box paradigm, while Apple does things right, giving extreme users the big ugly box with the expandability they need and allowing consumers to save space for more important things than a damn computer. The MacBook Pro and even the Mac mini may be a little bit pricey if you just focus on the hardware costs and assign no premium to the superior design, but the iMacs are screaming deals. Especially the stock model 17" one at $1175 factoring in the Amazon rebate, which drops to $1150 if you use your Amazon credit card because for every $~800 you spend there they send you a $25 gift certificate. (I received $50 in certs for my MacBook Pro, in addition to the hopefully soon forthcoming rebate. So another way to look at it was that the Complete New Yorker was a $13 option on my MBP.) That sum buys you the most modern computer hardware you can get today: the newest cutting-edge processor, a top graphics card with a beautiful monitor and provision to extend your desktop over a second screen, the top hard disk standard, all of the wireless built in, wireless remote, webcam. Not to mention the perfect form factor, superior OS, and superior included software (iLife, Quicken, etc.). As it happens, I was having this argument with a colleague today. Here's the closest comparison of a reasonable machine (fancy enough to have legs, but not overdoing things) I could get from a name brand competitor that has an actual service policy. (DIY may or may not be cheaper, but is indisputably a service hassle.) They don't offer a 17" monitor of acceptable resolution, so I'm comparing 20" models. Also, to keep things fair I'm not using student/faculty pricing, but the price that anyone who went to their respective websites would get. From Apple, 20" iMac BTO with -1GB RAM -250GB disk -128MB VRAM -Mighty Mouse -3 year AppleCare -Software bundle including OSX, iLife, Quicken, Migration Assistant, and other stuff, on disk as well as installed. $1968 non student. Link. From Dell: XPS 200 (their slimline desktop, which still takes up quite a bit more space than an iMac) with cheapest processor (old design, not Core, but higher GHz) -installation CD (Apple includes it, so only fair) -remote (FrontRow!) -128MB VRAM (on older graphics card than the iMac's, assuming that higher numbers = newer at least; also, no mention of dual monitor support, though for these purposes let's assume it does) -1GB RAM -250GB disk -8X SuperDrive (or whatever they call it) -20" widescreen Note that the monitor and computer are two different, clashing colors! -Audigy (stock card doesn't seem to have digital out) -enhanced keyboard (Apple's has more functionality than a standard PC keyboard) -Speakers in monitor -Logitech Mighty Mouse equivalent -no productivity suite -3year service -phone support for 1st 30 days (free with Apple for 90 I think) -Premium Entertainment Pack (poor iLife sub, but closest available) -1450 WLAN AirPort adapter Wireless wasting a USB space instead of being built in! -cheaper of the two offered webcams (iSight built on iMac, not a clunky accessory) -cheapest Migration Assistant equivalent -Norton (not same as iMac, but not needed on a Mac, either) -Quicken 06 (included free in iMac software bundle) $2164 Link. Note that to get them truly equivalent you have to also add the following, with prices from macmall.com: Cheapest FireWire PCI card: $30. Cheapest Bluetooth adaptor: $15. So let's call it $2200 for the clunky 2-piece non-matching Dull setup vs. $1950 for the sleek, elegant iMac. If I didn't absolutely need a laptop, I would've bought an Intel iMac over the MBP in a heartbeat. The economics are pretty compelling. And when the widescreen iBook replacement (MacBook) comes out, I might just sell the MBP for a probably minimal loss (Apple stuff holds value well, unlike lesser marques) and split duties between an iMac and a MacBook.
post #35 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by skalogre
...M$ is just struggling to keep the underparts of Windows from exploding...
I originally read this as M$ is just struggling to keep the underpants of Windows from exploding, which I totally agree with. I still don't understand why anyone thinks the mouse was a good idea. I hate the damn things. I don't recall anyone ever having carpal tunnel syndrome before the mouse was invented. I use all the keyboard shortcuts I can learn. For the geeks, and to inject a little levity, let me remind everyone that all operating systems suck.
post #36 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by skalogre
Razor's edge. Same thing that MS hates. No stranglehold means less $$$. Like MS, they are slowly coming to that realization.

Now about what I mentioned earlier.. bouncing dock was just an example of fluff I gave - there are a lot of much worse offenders.

No company today has been able to make any sort of interface innovation that matters. Everything is just a tweaked rehash and Apple is especially guilty of that. There is indeed academic research in the CHI field but nothing that any company has the cojones to implement. Apple is locked in to the Mac "look and feel" while M$ is just struggling to keep the underparts of Windows from exploding. For some interesting but as of yet unimplemented ideas, read the late Jeff Raskin's (yes, THAT Jeff Raskin) The Humane Interface. I can give you a few dozen more CHI/UI reading suggestions but my point is that usability is a joke in general. No company has done anything worthwhile. There has not been a significant change or paradigm shift since Xerox Lab's mouse/gui idea...

Computers are still stupid and unnecessarily complex. The "friendly" PC (ie Mac) is still this way. Windows has made improvements but it is still as complex on the surface as ever. Some Linux/BSD distros have had EXCELLENT ideas but they do not have sufficient leverage/capital/userbase to make a dent.

See, now I am ranting. I remember when I was working on my senior project in University, the more books I went through the more angry I got with the blatant stupid design decisions of current OSes.

I don't think it will be to many years until there is a big change in the way we use all of this technology. I think the cable, music, phone, and computing industries are really trying to figure out where all of this is going to go. It is all coming together and whoever figures out how to make it all work and be consumer friendly will be the winner in the upcoming 50 years.
post #37 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by CTGuy
I agree with your sentiments. I have a lot of respect for Apple. I think that generally the design of their products are superb and often ahead of their time. However, I think that their aim to protect their products with incompatibility is generally very short sighted and pretty negative for many consumers. In the long run, I think what we are seeing right now is sort of an eventual capitulation by Apple to a reality that in order to be competitive and to build superior products, you need to allow for a certain level of compatibility.

I don't know the answer to this question but...

Are they making products incompatible or are they just making the products for their own computing system?

The ipod wasn't made for MS when it first came out. I think that along with the popularity of the ipod came the necessity to make ipod compatible with other OSs.

On one hand, Apple loses large profits by limiting the compatibility with other MS computers but retains the value of their own products due to their uniqueness and appeal to Mac users.

Although, as I said earlier, if they didn't make the ipod compatible, they would be crazy (and probably vilified).
post #38 of 151
Quote:
$1100! Ouch! To think that for a mere $75 more you could have instead bought a modern computer with a built-in high resolution 17" widescreen monitor that takes up far less space, uses far less power, and operates far more elegantly. That's a little bit like buying Gap jeans for $35 with a shop next door selling deadstock Helmut Langs for $38....

This is a retarded argument. Go back, rethink it, and try again.

$1100 over a nine year span for a computer that is still fast by today's standards *or*

Assuming you buy a new Mac every 4 years or so:
$? computer in 1997, $? computer in 2001, $? computer in 2005

My computer is probably as fast as the mac you theoretically purchased early in 2005.

By the way, that iMac is ugly. Not as ugly as the old candy colored ones... but ugly. And the screen is too small.
post #39 of 151
as i posted earlier Slim, my seven year old Mac laptop comfortably outperforms my 2 year old Windows one. With no viruses, no constant popups telling me some weird Norton error that wont go away, it doesnt get as hot, and for some reason I keep having to reinstall Windows on the PC every six months or so. It gets hit up by a virus every couple of months...and thats without even getting me started on the OS.
post #40 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by m@T
as i posted earlier Slim, my seven year old Mac laptop comfortably outperforms my 2 year old Windows one. With no viruses, no constant popups telling me some weird Norton error that wont go away, it doesnt get as hot, and for some reason I keep having to reinstall Windows on the PC every six months or so. It gets hit up by a virus every couple of months...and thats without even getting me started on the OS.

People who have problems like that are doing something wrong. Didn't I tell you that those penis enlargement pills were a scam? Never had a virus, OS has never blue screened during normal operation, Norton and Macafee are garbage. They help propagate the viruses so that they can stay in business. As a matter of fact they used to sell windows code to the Chinese govt when they had a virus writing and electronic sabotage program. A firewall and some discretion is all I use.

By "outperform" what do you mean? Are you benchmarking it with shared platform software or what?
post #41 of 151
Let me begin this post with a large caveat: I am a Windows user. The last time I used a Mac on any regular interval is back in the days of OS 7.x - to give you an indication of how long ago that was, the Mac itself came with a built-in 14.4kbps modem.

That being said, I have a general observations to make. After interacting with OSX on a G5 we have at work, I have fallen in love with the interface of that OS. Smooth, logical, and sexy, yet with a 100% *nix core when you want to get nerdy. Compare that with XP, in which while a command prompt is still technically accesible, it has been removed from the core of the OS and in the process has lost a lot of functionality.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
1: I can build a similarly specced PC for around $300. A black one. White sucks.

Let's clear this point up first. Pricing has not been a selling point on Apple machines for a very, very long time, and even back in the day it was only because of massive discounts given to educational institutions. This is why you saw many schools and their staff('s families) equipped with Macs.

If people are not buying Macs to save money, then, pricing is essentially irrelevant. This leads me to a second point: the public often prefers design to practicality. I'll point here to the domination of the iPod in portable markets - its functionality comes nowhere near many of its competitors and at a more expensive price, but its sex appeal is undeniable. You can buy a player from Creative that will practically give you a happy ending if you would like, but the tradeoff is you might be a little ashamed to show it off in public.

Quote:
2: Ok Mr. Fantasy land, go buy a Mac CPU or motherboard at the computer store. See ya in a few years when you figure out that you can't. There are no third party CPU's or motherboards, RAM is fine, but you can't upgrade it, only put in MORE, and how many more is limited by your PROPRIETARY motherboard. If I wanted to upgrade to 4GB of PC2-7200 memory from my 1GB of PC-3200 I could do it. I could switch from my AMD processor to an Intel Processor and still run all the same programs and keep my RAM, HD's and optical drives static. Can't do it in a Mac.

Prior to Apple's switch to an x86-based platform, this claim had more legitimacy.

When Apple rolls out the x86 successor to the G5, and if we're talking upgrades we really should stick solely to desktops here, the motherboard and case are pretty much the only proprietary pieces. Even then, because Intel is now the main company behind Apple's primary hardware, the chipset you'll find on the new Macs is probably very similar to what you'll find in a Dell machine.

Beyond that, I'm not convinced there will not be some sort of hack to Apple's low-level firmware to allow switching out processors, if Apple doesn't choose to allow that themselves. These new Macs do not use BIOS in the typical sense, so it's a little more difficult to engineer a workaround, but usually this sort of thing is only a matter of time once the right person gets ahold of the code.

On the subject of RAM upgrades, there is a very shaky premise behind your example. For one, PC-7200 RAM will not have one tiny bit of impact on system performance unless the bus, or paths connecting memory to the processor, runs at that 7.2GBps rate. That simply is not the case. Even the vaunted Athlon64 still goes with PC-3200 memory. Now granted the architecture of the Athlon64 complicates the situation a bit, but the bottom line is the only time you'll find faster memory being utilized is in an overclocked system.

Furthermore, you can use PC-7200 RAM (if such a standard existed) in a Mac. It will behave the same way as if you put it into a PC, which is to say it will run at the highest clock speed supported by the bus, in this case most likely PC-3200 speeds. When it comes to amounts of RAM, anything over 2gb is overkill for anyone other than graphics/video editors. Also, because Intel has not yet migrated to a 64-bit architecture, its current processors are capable of addressing a maximum of 4 GB of RAM at most. DIMMS now come in 1 GB sizes, and most Intel boards have 4 slots, which would equal 4 GB of possible RAM.

Aside from the motherboard and CPU, all other components in the Mac are governed by the same standards as PCs. PCI-Express cards are cross platform, so video cards are completely upgradeable. As are sound cards via the also-standard PCI slots.
post #42 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_economy
On the subject of RAM upgrades, there is a very shaky premise behind your example. For one, PC-7200 RAM will not have one tiny bit of impact on system performance unless the bus, or paths connecting memory to the processor, runs at that 7.2GBps rate. That simply is not the case. Even the vaunted Athlon64 still goes with PC-3200 memory. Now granted the architecture of the Athlon64 complicates the situation a bit, but the bottom line is the only time you'll find faster memory being utilized is in an overclocked system.

Furthermore, you can use PC-7200 RAM (if such a standard existed) in a Mac. It will behave the same way as if you put it into a PC, which is to say it will run at the highest clock speed supported by the bus, in this case most likely PC-3200 speeds. When it comes to amounts of RAM, anything over 2gb is overkill for anyone other than graphics/video editors. Also, because Intel has not yet migrated to a 64-bit architecture, its current processors are capable of addressing a maximum of 4 GB of RAM at most. DIMMS now come in 1 GB sizes, and most Intel boards have 4 slots, which would equal 4 GB of possible RAM.

Aside from the motherboard and CPU, all other components in the Mac are governed by the same standards as PCs. PCI-Express cards are cross platform, so video cards are completely upgradeable. As are sound cards via the also-standard PCI slots.

The point that I was making was that when the motherboards for PC7200 start becoming available, I can drop one in my PC at any time, it will take twenty minutes out of my day, and that will be the end of it. Until Apple starts supporting third party Mobo's and Processors (It will never happen, BTW) Its just not possible to do with a Mac. You would have to go buy a new computer (when Apple eventually decided to release one with the specs you wanted, if they ever did)

I, by the way, do both graphics and video editing on my 9 year old PC. Yes it is overclocked. There are 2GB DDR chips and mobo's with four RAM slots specifically for people like me. I don't HAVE 8GB of ram (yet) but if the need arose, I can get 2GB sticks for $150
post #43 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
People who have problems like that are doing something wrong.

Had the tech guy in here enough times to make sure Im not doing anything wrong - all thats on it are some office apps, a browser, photoshop, Norton antivirus, associated drivers and thats about it. What can I do wrong? Even if I am doing something wrong, doesnt the fact that I am evidentally doing nothing wrong on the Mac say something about its usability for an everyday user like me?

Windows machines are just time bombs functional until the next crash.

Quote:
By "outperform" what do you mean? Are you benchmarking it with shared platform software or what?
I dont benchmark at all, I just use it.

It photoshops faster, it doesnt skip on iTunes, it starts up way faster, its 'snappier' to use generally.

i dont profess to be a tech, im just some guy who uses a computer at work that annoys him and a computer at home that doesnt.
post #44 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
The point that I was making was that when the motherboards for PC7200 start becoming available, I can drop one in my PC at any time, it will take twenty minutes out of my day, and that will be the end of it. Until Apple starts supporting third party Mobo's and Processors (It will never happen, BTW) Its just not possible to do with a Mac. You would have to go buy a new computer (when Apple eventually decided to release one with the specs you wanted, if they ever did)

I think this will be a moot point once the hacking of OSX is complete. There have already been several people who were able to run OSX on their plain PC hardware, the only major hurdle that remains is driver development.

On the legit side of the spectrum, you do have a point about motherboard upgrading. With Intel involved in Apple's business now, however, I think there may be some greater push toward more open hardware policies on the part of Apple. I doubt we'd see something like allowing 3rd party boards, but certainly an Apple branded standalone motherboard is not out of the picture. This would go against Apple's previous business practices, but then again so has the entire migration to an x86 architecture.

Quote:
I, by the way, do both graphics and video editing on my 9 year old PC. Yes it is overclocked. There are 2GB DDR chips and mobo's with four RAM slots specifically for people like me. I don't HAVE 8GB of ram (yet) but if the need arose, I can get 2GB sticks for $150

Your 9 year old PC cannot use 8 GB of RAM. Any 32-bit processor, which for a consumer at this point means anything that is not an AMD Athlon64, is capable of addressing only 4 GB of RAM. Increasing memory usage demands of programs was/is a major driving force behind the push toward 64-bit computing.
post #45 of 151
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
$1100 over a nine year span for a computer that is still fast by today's standards *or*
I don't buy that, considering that the laptop I bought in late 1997 (P233MMX with 512MB RAM, all of 4GB disk, and a puny 1024x768 13.3" screen) was over $5k and the desktop my parents bought earlier that year (PPro-200 with 256MB RAM, a massive 3.2GB disk, and a 17" CRT of 1280x1024 resolution) was in the $3500 range. Admittedly, both machines were the fastest/most disk/most RAM things you could buy in their respective categories at the time, and if you stayed a step behind the curve you could have realized some savings. Still. if you've spent $1100 and have something remotely modern then it must have mostly been spent in the last six months. Or you have access to surplus parts that normal people don't, or don't care about warranties/servicing and buy used parts. (One can also buy used Apples, though for obvious reasons used Macs command higher resale value than lesser machines, largely negating the savings compared to buying a refurb or even a new machine from Apple. Sadly, I've always bought rev.A Macs more or less within the first month of release, so never could realize savings by buying refurbs. My AirPort Express with its bit-perfect audio output is a refurb, though.)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
Assuming you buy a new Mac every 4 years or so: $? computer in 1997, $? computer in 2001, $? computer in 2005
Bump it up to every five years, and I can give you real world numbers: 1Q2001: about $2700 to start (TiBook G4-500mHz, BTO) 2Q 2006: 1799 for the computer itself (MacBook Pro 1.83GHz, price counting the $200 amazon.com rebate that I technically have yet to receive) + another $115 to bump up the RAM At current use patterns, assuming no theft, that's about $200/year for a laptop. Maybe add an extra $30 a year for upgrades, primarily to storage capacity. Desktops would obviously be much cheaper.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokyo Slim
And the screen is too small.
Within an $1100 budget, I think you'd be hard pressed to get a bigger screen than the 17" iMac. Maybe bigger in terms of size, but not in terms of resolution. Most cheap 19" LCD's are still only 1280x1024, so what's the point? I don't mind that my 32" LCD HDTV is only 1366x768 - less than the 15.4" MBP screen in both dimensions! - because I sit far enough away from it that it doesn't matter. But a large screen with giant pixels is really annoying up close. The density of the MBP screen is a little too tight, but the 17" and 20" iMacs have about the same pixel density as the original TiBook, which is about perfect. Obviously, if a 15.4"/17" 1440x900 (MacBook Pro/17" iMac) screen or a 20" 1680x1050 (20" iMac) screen is too small, you can extend your desktop onto a second monitor. (I didn't believe that the new iMacs could do that - the old ones only mirrored desktops - but I saw it at an AppleStore recently.) I know my MacBook Pro can drive its monitor plus up to a 30" Apple Cinema Display (2560x1600) in addition to its built-on monitor, but according to Apple the iMac can "only" drive screens up to the 23" Apple Cinema Display (1900x1200) in addition to its screen. That's about as much screen as one can buy anywhere today.
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