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An Apple MacBook Pro... Why not?

MacBook ProI am not an Apple Fanboy – but I am a fan of innovation, choice and knowledge. When thinking about my next laptop, more and more I am strongly considering something that was not a possibility a couple of years ago. I am seriously considering an Intel based Apple MacBook Pro. As someone using Windows, .NET, ASP .NET and having decades of intellectual and financial investment in the PC platform, a move like this is not to be taken lightly. I will not and cannot throw that all away, but not only do I not have to but I am excited to expand my knowedge by the potential move to an Apple laptop.

In some ways it will be going full circle because I first started using and developing software with the Apple II. Once high school courses started, PCs were the primary machine, but I remember thinking what trash they were compared to the Apple II GS OS. The DOS and Novell driven PCs looked and felt terrible compared to my Apple II GS. I debated with classmates about why the Apple was superior (yes, I know, I know) but alas a prettier UI, better user experience and technical superiority does not necessarily matter. The law of numbers and practicality do.

Accordingly, Apple became less and less viable as a platform and a lot of us moved to the PC where the majority of jobs and high growth areas were. Whether you wanted to start a new software company or work in an office, many times that dictated that you use a PC. Today is different and it is time to reevaluate and (dare I say) “think different”. Why?

While traditional store-bought boxed software still exists, the market is not what it once was; the newly released Windows Vista is even for sale via download. No, today the web (2.0?) is finally becoming the platform people hyped (too soon) during the dot-com bubble. Fittingly, with webmail and online applications, many times it makes little difference whether you are using Windows, a Mac or Linux.

But how can someone that develops and/ or has a huge investment in the Windows platform possibly "switch" to a Mac? Sure, it is possible to develop using javascript, java or C++ etc. on a Mac, but what about .NET, ASP .NET, Vista and XP centric applications? (Yes, I know about Mono) Further, doing development makes it nearly a 100% requirement for the environment to be native and not running through virtualization software such as Parallels or VMware. So, how can I consider this? Simple, because I do not have to "switch" to a Mac! What? That is correct – I cannot and will not go cold turkey and dump all software and knowledge I have… Remember? I am not an Apple Fanboy. The great thing is, I don’t have to. With Boot Camp I get the best of both worlds without losing a thing.

AppleiigssmWith Boot Camp I continue to keep the investment I have in Windows but also get a laptop that looks great, performs well, makes web application testing easier and expands my overall knowledge. There is no arguing the MacBook looks great when compared to most PC laptops. The Intel based architecture makes perform as well as any Dell, HP or OEM of choice. Web application testing becomes that much easier and complete via Mac based browsers. While you might argue the point of testing a platform with less than 6.5% market share, I will argue right back that public facing sites should perform consistently across standards based systems (with exceptions where need to improve compatibility with browsers such as IE 6). With mobile devices and even game systems like the Nintendo Wii having browsing capability, this point becomes more important by the day. Finally, my knowledge and idea parameters are expanded by using a new system. How? I am exposed to new usage scenarios, new layout and design, graphic concepts and an overall new experience that adds to the conceptual pool when brainstorming.

I would be giving up the native on-screen Tablet PC functionality of my Toshiba Portege M400 (for the time being),  but as I previously wrote, I can transform the Vista partition into a functional Tablet PC which makes this point moot. I can even use the aforementioned Parallels or VMware as I always have, for testing purposes or running Linux. Even if I had no interest in using Mac OS X, what have I lost? Unlike in the past, I do not have to shun Windows to embrace an Apple.

So… why not consider an Apple? Why not choose the best of both worlds and expand opportunities? Why not take the opportunity to look at a system that enables seamless support for non-computer related uses? Why not look at a system that adds capability, without any loss from what previously exists? What is lost by choosing an Apple MacBook over a Dell? Aren’t you asking yourself the same question?

(I will say that I do plan on waiting for any forthcoming product refreshes... such as LED backlights and possible hybrid hard drive)

Benjamin Bach
techThoughts ::
Thoughts, ideas, code, speculation and news
about all things technology.

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the only reason i could see not having a mac today is that you dont get to the inner parts of a mac much so if your a power user.
But it is a professional Linux box. Most people that don't know Linux say its a Unix box.

But i own 2 macs and love them just converted i got a imac and a black macbook.

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