After years of PC ownership (they’re all actually PC’s but we think of that typically phrase associated with non Apple machines) I’m looking at an Apple. Not because of anything more than it’s time I look at the dark side…or light side depending on whom you ask.
This, by no means, means that I won’t have PC’s and use them regularly. It just means that I’m curious to see how the other half lives. I mean those Apple people sure do seem happy according to the commercials. So begins my quest and the first thing I notice is that Apples are really expensive. I mean I knew they were expensive but not THAT expensive. They’re double the price of similar non Apple units. I found this to be a definite obstacle.
I put aside my tendency to be…thrifty as best I could and looked and decided to look for a used machine to meet in then middle. They were still priced high. It was hard to understand. Suddenly that became more of the topic of my interest than actually getting the machine. I had to ask myself why Apple was coveted and held it’s value so well.
Is it quality, lack of problems or something else? What makes the Apple so popular amongst the people that love it. Well it certainly has some good things but not enough so there has to be something intangible. I mean they break. I’ve seen it even though Apple owners will say I am mistaken. After poking around I came to a conclusion (Apple owners prepare for rage). Apple products give the world the perception that you are creative and unique. Who doesn’t want to be creative or unique….well apparently PC owners.
That being said they’re both good machines in their own ways but Apple is in part getting you to buy into a fashion line. When you go into a store and just try to fathom the amount of income generated by added “bling” to go on your Apple products. This “bling” fits the creative and unique theory also if you think about it. Because having the $350 audio player isn’t enough for some of us. They’ve got the have the rhinestone Elvis commemorative water, fire, and bomb proof protective cover so that they can stand out just that much more.
I’m not saying that Apple isn’t good. I’m saying that they excel at marketing and perhaps that adds to the perceived value of the equipment. Ultimately I went into the used market and finally located a reasonably priced machine (this is approximately twice the price of a similar PC) that was being sold by a college student home for the weekend.
I met with him and checked the machine out and got it. So I am sitting there in a retro diner finally a proud Apple owner. I keep it on the table and open and see people looking. The food is good and the sky is clear. I own an Apple and am young again. It’s time to sit down and explore this new machine.
Sitting down I was prepared for some obstacles because of the differences between the operating systems but I was expecting a little more magic. What I did find was a solid machine that did not what I asked once I figured out how to ask what I wanted. One of the big obstacles is that the Mac has a different mindset behind it which might seem to make things easier but that is only as far as just “using” the machine. If you want to do anything more it gets confusing.
Finding some issues with some basic things (as would be expected) is not abnormal at all. What was odd was that when I asked Mac owners for help I was constantly met with “I’ve never had to do that”. I ended up calling Apple who told me how to do something and it didn’t work and I called back and I was told to reformat the machine. That seemed a little drastic but what was shocking was the limited amount of knowledge that Mac owners had to even going the slightest bit outside the norm just “using” the machine.
The Mac is a good machine but not necessarily a superior machine…just a different one. It does lockup. It even crashes. Some programs don’t run and it is just confusing as to how to install, remove, and keep note of what is actually running depending on the circumstances.
What I found was it was odd because the users didn’t seem to know the “workings” of their machines. They knew about the Mac to the point that we all know about the operation’s of a microwave oven. And I am not sure that when I am using a microwave I am actually “cooking”. The ease of the device, while letting me prepare food, detaches me from the art of cooking. Perhaps the same can be said for the Mac and actual computing.
Don’t let this mislead you into thinking I don’t like my Mac. I do. I just don’t worship it. It’s another tool in the belt. Parts of it are absolutely fantastic…baseline battery life, IChat, and some other items. Other than that it’s a machine that allows me on the internet but at a premium price.