a WinTel user revisits the forum...

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by DaveTheRave, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. DaveTheRave macrumors 6502

    May 22, 2003
    I posted here a few times more than 2 years ago. At the time I was trying to decide how to replace my extremely ancient windows 95 machine (including AOL dial-up!) with something modern and new. I had a hard time deciding what to buy: an iBook/Powerbook, or an IBM Thinkpad. What made the decision tough for me was that I was going to start business school soon, and I was unsure if there was going to be a reason for me to stick with the common Windows format.

    I went for the Thinkpad. I've had it for two years now, and overall I like it. But from the beginning the CDRW/DVD drive has been buggy and sometimes freezes the machine. Sometimes I still get WinXP Pro's blue screen of death. Sometimes the WiFi drops out. Not a perfect experience, but overall its acceptable. Now that I've almost completed business school, I can say that the choice of laptop wasn't that big of a deal. The programs I used frequently were MS Office and Adobe Acrobat Reader, which I know are easily available on a Mac. The one program I had to use for a semester was MiniTab, which is a statistics program. At the time there was no Mac version, so I was glad to have the Thinkpad when doing the homework for that class.

    So I was reading something about Apple notebooks and stumbled across this forum again. I really like the look of the 12-inch Powerbooks. I was getting that jealous feeling again - smooth design, no crashes, etc. Hmmm...I thought...is there a way for me to justify getting rid of a decent Thinkpad for a Mac? But then I thought about sometime. For me, my laptop is becoming more of an appliance. I started using Gmail earlier this year and I love it. I can imagine no longer using my Earthlink account via Oulook 2003 and only using web-based email. I think someday we'll all be storing our huge files online. We may not care about the size of the hard-drive when its safer or cheaper or more convenient to store them on the web. I know some of those services are already out there, but its not their prime time yet.

    I guess my point is that eventually it may not matter as much if we're using Windows or OSX or Linux. For me, my combo of a sometimes buggy laptop with a cable modem and using more web-based services makes it less likely that I'll find the need to get something new. I can see myself keeping this setup for a few more years.

    Of course if/when the Thinkpad craps out for good I'll have to upgrade, and then I'll again look at Apple. I suppose that if you edit videos and stuff like that then you'll need to upgrade and the OS/hardware will matter more. I think in 10 years or so we'll all be paying Google a few dollars per month for access to their web services. We'll all use different machines to get on the net. Some will be elegant looking, some will look like ugly grey boxes. But at the end of the day they'll all be considered appliances, like a DVD player or toaster. Some will have more bell and whistles, but the bulk of the software we use will be web-based.

    Okay, now I'm rambling. And maybe I'm wrong, too. Where do you guys see all of this going?
  2. munkle macrumors 68030


    Aug 7, 2004
    On a jet plane
    Kottke wrote a good article on this not long ago.

    I agree we're going to see more web based apps over the coming years but there are too many limitations for them to make a "regular" OS redundant. When has a web based app ever been better than a local app? You mention GMail but I pretty much only deal with GMail via POP through mail.app, I see no benefit of using my browser instead and plenty of reasons not too.

    I think iPhoto is a good example of what is to come. I use Flickr and like it a lot. It's useful for sharing photos and the occasional backup but it'll never replace iPhoto. iPhoto will always have the edge when dealing with large files, lots of photos, sorting, image manipulation etc. But Flickr has it's place and is well integrated with iPhoto, which is why I use it.

    This is the trend I see. More web based apps, that are well integrated and takes advantage of what the internet has to offer, enhancing rather than replacing local apps.

    Apple are going down the right path at the moment by incorporating the internet more and more into their OS, admittedly you need a .mac account to reap the full benefit but at least they're working on it.

    Plus, as things are I'm going to feel a lot safer accessing the web using a Mac than a WinTel!

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