View Full Version : PCs: It's Big World Out There
06-08-2002, 07:03 AM
I bought a PC for the first time since I began using computers more than 12 years ago. Up until now every last computer I've owned has been a Mac. I'm a graphic designer, so Macs have made me very happy and helped me earn a decent living.
However, it's true what they say about software: there's a lot out there that won't run on a Mac. Virtual PC is slow even in OS 9 on my DP G4 450 and I got an amazing deal on a 1.7 GH P4 system (my wife works at Consumers and they sell the stuff they test back to employees dirt cheap).
So here I am, using Windows XP, and it's really not that bad. But that's about the best I can say. You want kindergarten interface? Well, this is a kindergarten interface. Big, buttons, primary colors. I plugged my USB mouse into the front of the computer and it took nearly three minutes for XP to recognize it. I look at the floppy drive and wonder at this interesting relic from another age. I also realize that Windows XP on this system is only slightly faster overall than OS X on my DP G4 450. So much for the critics.
What's blowing my mind is how incredibly huge the Windows World, if you will, is. It's cold out there! I like the Mac community. It's relatively small and with a few notable exceptions, very friendly. I'm lost in that big PC world. And while I think the PC is an interesting toy I think the Mac has an amazing community behind it that folks like me--who have only known the Mac (until now)--may have largely taken for granted.
There's more, but I don't want this post to go on forever!
Craig R. Arko
06-08-2002, 07:21 AM
Don't forget to start applying the critical updates. Soon including Service Pack 1, I think. And for the love of all humanity, keep the virus definitions up to date.
And at some point, look forward to installing a piece of hardware that you can only use while logged in as an admin user. :rolleyes: And beware the digitally signed drivers. And the cute help assistant that wants you to create a PassPort account every time you blink. And God help you if you need to change permissions on something. Talk about Byzantine...
I'll shut up now. Visit www.arstechnica.com for some grownup conversation in the Wintel world. And Pogue has an XP Missing Manual out now, too.
06-08-2002, 11:08 AM
Got all the updates. Not that many of them actually fix the problems for which they were designed, mind you (every time my PC goes into hibernation, it wakes up with a "serious" error and reboots).
Here's more weirdness: my monitor's rectangular display geometry is concave at the top and bottom and guess what? Yes, there are no controls to correct this behavior. But it gets weirder. Every time I move to my Mac directly after viewing this problem my Mac display--which is perfectly rectangular--starts looking like it's wrapped around a ball. So obviously Windows is literally warping my visual acuity...
Then there's the problem of "adding a printer." Want non-intuitive? This makes the Chooser seem revolutionary and actually illustrates what a step back the OS X Print Center is to some degree. Still, Print Center saw all my PostScript printers while XP's Add Printer wizard doesn't even seem to understand what an Ethernet network is.
There is one situation where what some people are saying about Macs versus PCs is true: browser speed is clearly superior on the PC. Apple has to address this issue.
On the other hand, Quartz is miles above whatever XP's display engine is. There's no comparison in my opinion. Text rendering in particular is simply beautiful in OS X, especially since 10.1.5.
06-09-2002, 04:12 AM
graphic designer, eh? Let us know your productivity level on XP. I've worked on both platforms but haven't worked with XP yet. I was always more productive and faster on the mac. I did more production and layout than design though. My answer to the question --why mac? has always been, "I can sit and work at my mac for hours and feel happy as if the os isn't fighting with me or in my way. I sit at a windoze box and I'm instantly at work and suffering." Maybe XP is better now, 95-00 has always been ugly to me. You'll have to let us know your Xperience.
p.s. Please don't put us in your address book;)
06-09-2002, 06:54 AM
As Craig can attest to, I love solitary computing... I'm happiest running an OS that not every one else in the world is running (viva la Rhapsody! :D ), but when coming in out of the cold of bleeding edge computing there is no place like the Mac community. The Windows (and some degree, other PC based operating systems) communities are very self hating. I would never trade my happy-go-lucky computing on a Mac for the dysfunctional (both social and technical) Windows world.
Craig R. Arko
06-09-2002, 07:06 AM
Hiya, Racer! Great seeing you here. The Macintosh Way is still alive and kicking.
Andy, do let us know how this works out for you. It should prove an interesting chronicle. And you can keep me in your address book. :)
06-09-2002, 01:15 PM
bakaDeshi, I didn't buy the PC as a productivity machine for graphic design; that is the sole pervue of my half dozen Macs. I bought it purely because I couldn't run some fairly processor-intensive, PC-only software in VPC comfortably and I got a terrific deal. Then my father told me to buy MS Flight Simulator and now I can't keep my kids off the thing. It's a toy. Ironic, no?
That said, the user experience isn't all that bad. But the Mac is still clearly a superior platform, in my opinion. Quartz kicks major booty over GDI, Apple's i-apps are simply amazing--XP can't touch them--and the simple act of adding a printer is still a torturous experience on the PC. I also find these "wizard" things supremely annoying.
On the other hand there are niceties on the PC that I wish OS X had: there's a way to login to another user and still keep your login active--very cool! XP handles PPP much more smoothly than does OS X; the overall Internet experience is actually more satisfying to me on a PC than it is on a Mac. For example, fire up Mozilla on OS X and you'll be waiting 20 seconds. Fire it up on XP and it launches nearly instantaneously. Web pages load faster.
There is also one very, very big issue on the PC that frightens me to death. Let me put it this way: when using our Macs we can generally feel pretty secure when yet another virus report appears. But now I'm a potential target. This bothers me a great deal and it is, in my mind, another advantage of owning a Mac.
vBulletin® v3.8.7, Copyright ©2000-2013, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.