I've read lots of people asking for reviews about new Macs that people have gotten, but nobody seems to have written one. If they have, please excuse me, but it doesn't seem to happen very frequently so I thought I'd write one. To avoid writing what would otherwise be an extremely long review, I'll make a list of the bad things that I experienced, as they were so few, during my switch from an HP Pavilion 8280 running Ubuntu Linux to an Apple eMac running Mac OS 10.4. I'm going to be writing more about the software as that is obviously the soul of my new eMac and as always with computers is far more problematic than hardware. HP Pavilion 8280 333 MHz Intel Pentium 2 256 MB of Memory (64 MB originally) 40 GB 7200 RPM Hard Disk Drive (8 GB 5400 RPM originally) ATI Rage Pro with 4 MB of Video Memory 17 inch CRT Ubuntu Linux 4.10 (Microsoft Windows 95 originally) Apple eMac 2005 1.5 GHz PowerPC G4 512 MB of Memory 160 GB 7200 RPM Hard Disk Drive ATI Radeon 9600 with 64 MB of Video Memory 17 inch CRT Mac OS 10.4.2 (Mac OS 10.4.0 originally) The Apple Keyboard Originally, I really disliked the Apple keyboard. It felt like a toy, spongey, soft and cheap. On numerous occasions I thought that I might break the dang thing. However, now that I have grown accustomed to it, I like it. It has not broken and is surprisingly indestructible, just don't spill anything on it. The eMac Screen Before I purchased, I was under the impression that the eMac's screen would reach at least 85 Hz at 1280 x 960 resolution. However, it is much less at only 75 Hz. When Apple first released the eMac, I printed out the specifications and they claimed refresh rates of 85 Hz or above at all resolutions. Not surprisingly, the specifications have now been corrected and are much lower than they were originally. Nevertheless, I find my eMac's screen to be wonderful at 1024 x 768 resolution. Anything more hurts my eyes and I wish Apple would make the eMac's screen significantly better than my old CRT that I bought 8 years ago, which is about equal to the eMac as far as refresh rates and resolutions go but isn't flat like the eMac's. I'm not doing any video editing or desktop publishing, so I don't find 1024 x 768 to be all that limiting. Automator Public beta. Workflows saved as standalone applications or finder plugins don't work at all. Hogs memory. Leaks hogged memory. The slowest application that I have ever used in my life. To be fair, those last two were fixed with 10.4.2. Other than that, Automator is a fantastic idea that I would like to see replace Applescript one day. Needless to say, it needs a lot of work before that's going to happen. Dashboard Public beta. Hogs memory. Borks up on me. Meaning that every so often I open up Dashboard and all the open third party widgets have closed and the built in ones cease to function. Restarting or closing and reopening all widgets restores Dashboard to working condition. To be fair, that last one seems to have been fixed with 10.4.2. Other than that I love Dashboard and use TV Tracker, Marquee, Package Tracker, Calculator, Phone Book, Weather and Wikipedia frequently. Safari The best web browser that I have ever used. I just wish it wouldn't crash whenever I visit certain websites. Mail Public beta. Crashes. Loses messages. Rules don't work. To be fair it doesn't seem to crash anymore after 10.4.1. For such an important program I've been very disappointed with Mail. Not only does it look like hell, but it crashed on me and lost all my messages after using it on day one. I've crafted a rule that redirects junk mail to my ISP to improve its spam filtering only to have it not be applied to messages that I've marked as junk that Mail didn't catch. I actually used Entourage during my entire Microsoft Office Test Drive period and liked it, but now that it's run out I'm too cheap to buy it. User Interface Unification and Consistency is what Apple really needs to work on. For consistency problems look at Mail, then Safari and then Pages. Apple needs to either go all the way with brushed metal or go all the way with Aqua. It also needs to take a trip down memory lane and use Mac OS 9 for awhile because there are many things that it has that Mac OS X could benefit from. For unification, how about unifying some of the preferences that almost all applications provide and making them a system preference that all applications adhere to. Speaking of System Prefrences, how about making that awesome Password Assistant a system wide thing, so I can use it to create a new password for a website in Safari. Printer configuration, maintenance and monitoring could use a whole lot of unification and simplification. It is a huge mess right now strung out over several applications, System Preferences, Printer Setup Utility, ColorSync Utility, some application that is the name of your printer, some application that is the name of your printer with utility at the end and on and on. Apple also needs to do something about consistent behavior. When one application, like System Preferences quits when I close it's window and another one doesn't it's very confusing. Yes, some applications shouldn't and some should, but as it is now I see no justification that QuickTime shouldn't and System Preferences should. Safari certainly shouldn't, but why shouldn't QuickTime or Mail or iTunes. Applications that only use and have one window like iTunes and QuickTime should quit when that window is closed. Applications that use and have many windows like Safari and Word shouldn't. Sorry for that whole rant about user interface, but as it stands all of the user interfaces I've used have left much to be desired and some were just plain awful like Windows'. Mac OS X has the potential to have the greatest user interface if Apple would just fix these problems that mar one of the best user interfaces I've ever had the pleasure of using.