I was in need of a new laptop a while back and was on the verge of buying a steeply discounted Thinkpad on a back to school promotion when it suddenly occurred to me to consider getting a Powerbook instead. I have had my mind on switching to a Mac for some time, mainly to get my hands on Final Cut Pro but the cost of Apple hardware has always seemed excessive. I contacted my universitys Mac user group to ask if they knew of any educational discount and they put me in touch with a sales rep at a dealer who serves the university. I asked the guy about the prices of the 17 Powerbook and the new 1.25 ghz 15 and he was like "oh! you're lucky you called me...we're coming out with a back to school promotion next week and offering big savings keep an eye on the user group webpage". So I thanked him...but the next week there was no sign of any promotion. Well the following week, still no promotion. Another week, still no promotion. Now we're into October...a little late for "back to school." Meanwhile, I missed out on IBMs Thinkpad deal and Apples own ipod deal, but at this point I was feeling psyched about switching, I got in touch with the guy and he assured me that the promotion would be launched any day. I mindlessly clicked reload on the Mac user group webpage for the better part of a month, waiting for more details. So the other day, they finally launched the long overdue promotion but when I saw it, I was astonished to find that only modest discounts on iBooks and the combo drive 12 and 15 Powerbooks were featured. Needless to say, I was quite irked about being led to wait all this time to find that only the lowest-end laptops were offered (and I had specifically enquired only about the highest-end ones). I voiced my displeasure on the universitys user forum, and the salesman responded Im sorry, but the promotion had to be negotiated with Apple and I had no idea until the last minute which models would be included. Well he certainly never mentioned that he had no idea when he encouraged me to wait and wait and wait. So I replied with some righteous remarks about sales ethics and how the long-awaited promotion was really quite weak and the next thing I knew, all these miscellaneous Mac users were jumping to this guys defense saying that the forum was for supporting the Mac community and not for some so and so to criticize this guy who has lent so much support to the Mac community...how we should instead express our appreciation for his efforts in organizing the promotion, and for his past efforts in putting together presentations on campus. From the way they were talking, youd think it was about Mother Teresa or Jane Goodall and not a sales person whos *job* is to organize promotions and presentations. So I had to leave the forum with my tail between my legs and when I look at the pbotos they have of their various user group meetings and the upbeat-looking people posing for photos with an iMac, I cant believe I ever thought I could be one of them. I bought into the Apple platform, but I dont care for this ridiculous Apple can do no wrong and please no dissent culture. Just look at this business with OS X upgrades when will Panther ship? Maybe soon, maybe next year Will current buyers get discounted upgrades? Maybe, maybe not Can we expect a 2-button mouse? No maybe Screw it! I dont care for the whole shroud of mystery thing. I think Ill buy an Acer Travelmate.