Thoughts on a Mac - wednesday 2004-03-17 1914 last modified 2004-03-17 1914
Categories: Nerdy
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Some inital impressions I have of using this new PowerBook. First off, it's the latest generation, 1.25GHz, 768MB memory, 80GB disk, the ports moved off to the sides, and the glowy keyboard.

This machine, it's beautiful.

It's just as beautiful when you turn it on. Someone finally put a gorgeous UI on UNIX. I'm a visual person, though, so I'll forcibly stop myself from talking about the way everything looks. I'll note briefly that the speakers sound better than any other laptop I've used. Obviously they lack bass, but it's a laptop. The entire machine is slightly lighter than my last laptop; for some reason I have a history of owning machines in excess of 7lbs.

On a form factor note, I still don't like this one-button deal. Apple should give up that war. Apparently the original designer of the Mac now recants from his single-button-minded mistake. Anyways. The trackpad and mouse button are the most painful I've used. My thumb is going to be deformed by the pressure required to click the button. On the other extreme, my typing usually causes the cursor to go flying all over the screen. Considering that I've turned on trackpad-based clicking, this is often a problem.

The keyboard I mostly love. I thought it was weird at first that the keyboard was set so close the monitor, but now I like having a place to rest my hands (so long as they don't accidentally brush against the trackpad). The fn key is in the wrong place for non-Solaris keyboards, it's where I want go to hit control. The enter key on the right bottom may be helpful for data entry folks, but who's using this piece of art for data entry? Replace it with another control key. My right pinky is going to atrophy.

Other small gripes: Safari has no undo button for text area editing. That's a killer feature. It also doesn't let you control form element coloring, which is also killer. I've gotten used to type-ahead find, so I might have to stick with Firefox for serious web work. Which is a shame, because Safari is also very, very pretty. Thunderbird has some weird trailing cursor issues when scrolling. I don't quite like the app-switching / internal window-switching paradigm.

Other nifty features: Exposé, AppleScript. Ah, AppleScript. About 20 lines made iCal and iTunes blend together to make a musical alarm clock. So long as you don't let your computer go to sleep on you. Mental note for tomorrow. The dock is cool. iCal is excellent, I'll try to publish select portions of my calendar to I have yet to play with iMovie and iDVD...

This is a very enjoyable piece of machinery to use :)



oooh. you got one? NICE! i still like my windows laptop because it's light and SILVER.

christine lieu on March 23, 2004 12:51 AM

If silver is t...

If silver is the main attraction, you might as well just get a PowerBook :)

Ryan Lee on March 23, 2004 11:02 PM

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