Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Captain Psyko, Sep 2, 2003.

  1. Captain Psyko macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2003
    Location:
    NY,NY
    #1
    Okay, so I'm a switcher. I just bought my first brand new 12 " powerbook, and it'll be here next week.

    So now the question is, 'now what?'

    I'm getting a mac, what am I going to need to put on it? I'm looking to spend as little money as possible here, and I don't want to have to fuss with Unix just yet (I won't have time this semester to learn what amounst to TWO new OS's.) Especially helpful would be suggestions of free options that can be used as stopgaps while I raise money for all this software I'm going to need.

    I need a word processor, preferably with full Office compatibility - I'm hoping to not have to shell out for MS Office if I can avoid it, but I need Powerpoint or equivalent, and I need 100 % word compatibility. I can do without outlook/access/excel. But Word and Powerpoint or COMPATIBLE equivalents are a must.

    I'm going to need a good Multi-IM client. AIM and MSN are musts. I'll use both seperately if need be, but I'd rather not. I despise windowclutter.

    I need a web browser that can handle tabbed browsing. I know Mozilla is ported, but have heard not so good things?

    Some good P2P action would be helpful.

    But more importantly than specific niches I need filled are all the little programs you folks use that give you amusement or make your lives easier.

    Part of the reason I switched was it seemed like all the really cool, simple, free/shareware programs of the sort that i admittedly love to play with, are on the mac. I've heard great things about Konfabulator, and the (very non-free) Boswell. Anybody care to enlighten me about those two, (I.e. what exactly I'd use them for, whether they are worth my time/effort/money?)

    Also, what do you reccomend? What do you use? Whats cool? Everyones got their own slate of programs. I want to know what yours is, and why I should use some of it.

    And please, no links to Versiontracker. I know about Versiontracker (I've done at least that much of my homework). I don't want to know where to get stuff. I want to know what stuff to get.
     
  2. santa macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2003
    #2
    switching

    hey, if you want 100% Office compatibility then you're going to have to get Office. There are other word processors, including Appleworks, that will import Word files with varying degrees of success but ultimately if you want total compatibility then you'll have no choice. You'll have to look more closely at your needs to determine which of the other word processors or presentation programs (like Keynote) may or may not be sufficient.
    You may want to keep an eye out for OpenOffice.org. Something may pan out there eventually, but for now, cough it up for Office unless you can live with importing into another program.
    Keep in mind Microsoft recently broke up the Office suite so now it's sold in a couple of different configurations.
    In the graphics area you have some alternative to Photoshop. I'd recommend Photoshop Elements as a starting point on a budget. Graphic converter is a good addition to the graphic end of the spectrum.
    There is a multi protocol client called Fire that you might look at. Haven't used it myself.
    I can't say anything about konfabulator or any haxies.
     
  3. Belly-laughs macrumors 6502a

    Belly-laughs

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Location:
    you wish
    #3
    Switch it on

    Hi!

    Welcome among us!

    I agree with the person above, shell out on the student verison of Office. Another good option as mentioned is to get AppleWorks and Keynote. Amaze your fellow students (and lecturers) with great looking presentations! The content is for you to deliver. It´s not free, though. OpenOffice.org should be OSX native soon and would be an option. Never tried it, so I will not give it a rating.

    Tabbed browsing? You get Safari for free with OSX. It´s nice. You also get the (free) AIM compatible iChat from Apple, with text, voice and video capability. There´s a MSN client for OSX as well.

    As for graphics packages I use them all; Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Quark (ouch!), Freehand, etc. I agree with the person above, Photoshop Elements is a good package for most graphic needs. It´s yours for $99 but you get it free with some digital cameras so if you´re looking to extend your digital life make sure you get the goodies bundled.

    You also get iPhoto with OSX that lets you import organize and adjust your photos. Limited as a graphics tool but it has the basic elements (crop, touch-up, enhance...).

    The Unix part of OSX you don´t have to worry about if you don´t want to. Also, getting into the ways of OSX has for all mac users I know been glitch-free. And in fact it´s probably easier for an ex-PC user than an Mac OS9 user.

    As for fun... I´m sure you get some really good tips from the others. You´ll love it!

    Enjoy your Mac!
     
  4. awulf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Location:
    South Australia
    #4
    Re: Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

    Other than MS Office its self nothing is 100% compatible with it. OpenOffice.org is pretty compatible and free BUT it is really hard to install, because it uses the UNIX side of Mac OS X.


    As santa already has pointed out Fire Is a very good IM client and I use it all the time. Another IM client is Proteus.


    Well there is Apple's Web Browser called Safari. There is other good Browsers called Camino and FireBird.


    Acquasition is a good one.


    The iApps already come with your computer (iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie, iCal, iSync, iChat)
     
  5. billyboy macrumors 65816

    billyboy

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2003
    Location:
    In my head
    #5
  6. awulf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Location:
    South Australia
    #6
  7. CmdrLaForge macrumors 68040

    CmdrLaForge

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Location:
    around the world
    #7
    Re: Re: Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

    Well I have to disagree in two point. First of all its really easy to install OO. First get X11 from Apple and then OO 1.0.3 from www.openoffice.org. Its really easy to install.
    BUT: its really not that compatible. I really didn't wanted to use MSOffice and tried OO and AppleWorks but - I finally bought MSOffice. Only for really simple documents OO or other stuff is OK but when you have more complex documents or presentation the compatibility is not that good. And if you want to exchange documents withs Win users - MSOffice is the choice. And with edu discount its not that expensive.

    Cheers
     
  8. Daveman Deluxe macrumors 68000

    Daveman Deluxe

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2003
    Location:
    Corvallis, Oregon
    #8
    Get System Organizer X and Konfabulator.

    SOX is great for a regular maintenance app. It automates a lot of the Unix scripts that get used for maintenance and presents a slick GUI for them. I run it once a week.

    Konfabulator needs no introduction.
     
  9. Horrortaxi macrumors 68020

    Horrortaxi

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2003
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #9
    Re: Re: Re: Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

    It's very simple to install. But when you launch it you get a Unix command line. Very intimidating for 90% of users. An OS X native version would be most welcome.

    To the original poster: The Mac itself will make things easier and more enjoyable for you. I suggest trying everything--that's what free trials are for. That's really the only way you'll know what you need.
     
  10. Juventuz macrumors 6502a

    Juventuz

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2002
    Location:
    Binghamton
    #10
    Re: Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

    Well most of your questions have already been answered, but I do have something to add.


    Just to add what others have said there's iChat that comes with your computer that works on the AIM network. There's also Adium that runs on the AIM network.

    Like they've said, Apple's Safari has tabbed browsing. Also to reiterate, there's Camino and Firebird from Mozilla that have tabbed browsing and work really well.

    I would recommend Poisoned. It connects to OpenFT, Gnutella and FastTrack which is the Kazaa network.

    You can also check out BitTorrent which is a great program for software.

    It's already been mentioned, but the iApps that come with your computer. Plus there are nice little apps you can get that enhance your computer. Here are a few links to some apps.

    www.glu.com
    www.panic.com
    www.thelittleappfactory.com
    www.konfabulator.com
    www.railheaddesign.com

    There are TONS more too.
     
  11. rueyeet macrumors 65816

    rueyeet

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2003
    Location:
    MD
    #11
    Re: Help make my Switch Story a successful one.

    Y'know, I haven't hardly opened the Terminal, and I switched almost a year ago. I keep meaning to get out my old college notes and try to re-learn Unix, but never got around to it. And to think one of the reasons I went Mac WAS to learn both OS's.... :rolleyes:

    The others are right: you're best off ponying up the $150 for the student version of Office. If you didn't need full compatibility, you could just save stuff in Rich Text Format and use the TextEdit program that comes with the Mac (which actually does more than a text editor), and buy Keynote for $99 as a PowerPoint alternative. But if full Office compatibility could be had for free, who'd buy Office? ;)

    For an AIM client, I like Adium: tabbed IMs! and free! This is especially valuable when IMing several people at once, because you don't need multiple windows. (I hate window clutter too.)

    For tabbed browsing, I've tried Mozilla, Camino, and Safari, and found Safari to be the fastest and most stable of the bunch. And it's free too.

    As to all the cool little bits, I don't like system clutter any more than window clutter, and have been a wee bit short on time, so I haven't really installed too much. I found that on Windows, my computers came bundled with a bunch of stuff I'd never want or use, simply because some company paid to put it there; on the Mac, a lot of the bundled stuff is from Apple, and is actually useful.

    I find that iTunes is a must; it's such a relief to use after MusicMatch Jukebox! I like the Music Store too--but then, I like my music legal. *shrug* Synergy is a neat-o little iTunes controller that goes in your menu bar, and I've been meaning to try that out.

    I also like the Stickies program that comes with the Mac. I can use them just like I do Post-its, with the added advantage that Stickies are collapsible to just the top bar, saving space and clutter.

    Actually, I think that when you buy a new Mac, it comes with a free trial offer for Macworld magazine. I'd advise you to get that, because they've got sections on cool share/freeware, as well as reviews of Mac-compatible products. That will give you a good line to some pretty neat stuff.

    That's all the tips I have...but it looks like you're getting most of what you need for free, and just spending on Office. Not too shabby!
     
  12. cubist macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2002
    Location:
    Muncie, Indiana
    #12
    Don't forget some games! Lately I'm addicted to Freeverse's Burning Monkey Solitaire, but I also like Civillization III and Star Wars Galactic Battlegrounds. Hoping that Rise of Nations will get ported to Mac.
     
  13. zagato27 macrumors 65816

    zagato27

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2003
    Location:
    The Hill
    #13
    I'm switching NOW. First step was to purchase Office X student/educator edition from Amazon.com.........$99. You can't go wrong. Now I'm looking for a suitable monitor for the G5 1.6 I'm going to order. I'm kind of holding back on the G5 hoping that Apple announces Panther and getting that with the G5. Also doing a little bit of R&D.....that's "research and delay". My wife wants a new computer, the P266 just isn't cutting it, but she'll be a tad grumpy bout the price of the new one. Hoping that she'll absolutely fall in love with Apple OS and all will be right. Wish me luck.
     
  14. Juventuz macrumors 6502a

    Juventuz

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2002
    Location:
    Binghamton
    #14
    Good luck... it's a switch worth making. I switched last summer and don't regret it one bit.
     
  15. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #15
    hey capt psyco welcome to the club, i would make sure you load up on memory 512 or better, OSX loves lots of good clean memory. then get office, try iphoto see if it meets your needs if not photoshop elements, and some great games such Return to Castle Wolfenstein,UT2003 & Nascar 2003. also safari has been a good browser for me.
     
  16. billyboy macrumors 65816

    billyboy

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2003
    Location:
    In my head
    #16
    If someone is resistant to change for what seems like a good reason TO THEM, (ie I have spent a fortune on PC compatible software over the years and it would presumably cost a fortune to replace it, ON TOP OF paying a premium for a Mac) the worst thing you can do is tell them they dont have a point.

    So I thought Id just be a smart ass and agree with PC software loaded critics before illustrating that actually, their point is not particularly accurate, bearing in mind how much is bundled with the high price Mac, and how much OSX compatible software is freeware, shareware...

    Do you think I should have just said that in the title?
     
  17. Dont Hurt Me macrumors 603

    Dont Hurt Me

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2002
    Location:
    Yahooville S.C.
    #17
    OSX,iphoto,imovie,itunes,safari,appleworks what else you need ?
     
  18. awulf macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2002
    Location:
    South Australia
    #18
    Reverse physicology [wrong spelling] is good
     

Share This Page