Hi, I know there have been a couple of similar threads to this one, but I have a unique wrinkle that needs help. I have just finished my first year as a Computer Engineering student at a NYS-run university, and am looking for a laptop. I will need to run various engineering applications, including but not limited to MATLAB, MultiSIM, a circuit software program that I do not know the name of yet, and a CAD program (probably DesignCAD but maybe a different one). I will also need a good office suite. I have used Linux and Windows all my life, but after using a couple of Mac desktops at the school and hearing a couple of friends enthuse over their MacBooks, I am wondering if I should think about getting one. I looked at one in a small Apple reseller nearby, and it looked pretty good price-wise as well as feature-wise, but I need to convince my father, an electrical engineer, that MacBooks have some advantage over a standard PC laptop before I can consider acquiring one, as I live at home and he has pretty tight control over my expenses (which I believe is good, as I am still developing my sense of financial control ). My other alternative would be getting a standard laptop, probably from Dell or a similar vendor, with specs similar to the cheap and/or midrange MacBook, and dual-booting Linux (PCLinuxOS 2007) with Windows, for any and all apps that won't run under Linux. I have specifically been looking at the Dell Inspiron E1405 range. So, what advantages would a MacBook have over something like the E1405? Better build quality? Does the MacOSX operating system have any distinct advantages over any other operating system that would make it desirable to buy? Included software? Or any other advantages? Or are there some disadvantages I should know of? I realize that I will have to set up a dual-boot system in all likelihood, but as I can get a licensed copy of Windows through my school this will not be a problem. I've read a bunch of reviews as well as the opinons of some other users on this forum, but I'm looking for some pretty solid information - personal experiences, for example. Thank you very much in advance.