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Macintosh v Windows

Posted on 2003-03-22
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People rave about Apple Macintosh, if it's so good why arn't we all using it? I know nothing about Mac's, do they run on a derivative of Unix? I've only used, and programmed on, Windoze.
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Question by:ncw
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10 Comments
 
LVL 31

Expert Comment

by:rid
ID: 8187503
Apple makes good quality hardware. More expensive than comparable PC hardware.

Mac OS before OS X is a totally proprietary thing with lots of drawbacks. Supposedly user-friendly, but not too stable, in my opinion.

OS X is in some way based on Unix.

One of my favourite machines is a PowerBook G3 running YellowDog Linux. Good hardware and good O/S.

Regards
/RID
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Expert Comment

by:danielf
ID: 8187826

I've been using Windows for years, and find win2k and XP (so far) quite reliable. I'm using Macs at work, (running OS 8.6 and 9.something), and am quite disappointed with them. I grant that I'm looking at relatively old OSs, but I find them unstable (all my Macs (three, don't ask. I do need them) crash several times a week. On the other hand, when they crash, they do recover. That is, you don't have to reinstall the OS. Macs have a reputatation for being user friendly, but in my mind, that is overstated. Maybe that used to be the case, (when comparing to DOS), but I personally find Windows easier to use. To my mind, Macs are expensive, inconsistent, and put form before function (I've got two G3s and one G4, none of them has a floppy drive ????), and no "end" key on the keyboard. Given a choice, I'd go with win2k. I hate the teletubbie look of XP.

All personal opinion of course.

Danielf
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LVL 18

Expert Comment

by:centerv
ID: 8188289
>>>>>if it's so good why arn't we all using it?
Good question!!  
Marketing and corporate fumbles IMHO.

Check this site
http://aroundcny.com/technofile/index.cfm
and look at the article ( and some others)
"Weary of Windows problems?"
under the special articles heading.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:ncw
ID: 8189449
Anyone who owns a Mac says how fast they are, but if they are more expensive then perhaps their spec is higher. Do they make more use of dual processors maybe - as in article link above?

I've heard they are big in the graphics editing world, but what about the small office environment, what about networking capabilities. Would you run a networked server on Unix with Macs?

I know Win98 is buggy but I'm hoping that XP has the stability of NT.

Can you build a Mac yourself like a PC, or is it only born at Apple?



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LVL 31

Expert Comment

by:rid
ID: 8189502
The PowerPC processor works differently from the Intel X86 type processors, so MHz speed has a quite different meaning for a Mac processor. Dual G4 processors is almost "standard" for the tower models now -and they are said to be lightning quick.

The Mac GUI is better than most windows versions, IMHO, and they have a lot of users and support in the graphics industry.

Normally, there is no problems with networking Macs, unless you expect to be able to share files with PC's - that requires third-party software for Mac OS before OS X. (or the NT4 UAM volume system). Also, Macs expect all printers to use PostScript, and they have never had a parallel interface, so printing is not the same thing as in the PC world.

For a stable windows, I'd recommend win 2000.

Only Apple builds Macs. There was a brief period of clone licensing, but that soon came to an end.

Regards
/RID
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LVL 12

Expert Comment

by:pjknibbs
ID: 8193555
I think it all comes down to what you want to use the machine for. Since OS X is Unix-based you can run a lot of Unix software on it--there are ports of Apache and stuff like that if you want to do server stuff, for example. However, it would be cheaper to buy an equivalent PC and install a copy of Linux on it, frankly, so that's not a good recommendation for buying a Mac. A lot of graphics people swear by Macs, too, but you can get every single piece of graphics software which is available on a Mac on a PC as well, so it comes down to which GUI you prefer.

As for that GUI, I think that's a matter of taste as well--rid prefers it to Windows, but I absolutely despise the OS 9 GUI. The OS X one is a little better, but I still prefer Windows.

One other thing: sure, even low-end Macs have two processors, and the G4 is a true RISC design which is generally more efficient than an X86 processor; however, the absolute fastest G4s you can get are 1.4GHz variants, and given that P4s are up to over 3GHz already I think the sheer brute clock speed advantage overcomes any G4 finesse.
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Accepted Solution

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danielf earned 200 total points
ID: 8194112
Part of my peeves with the Mac GUI stem from the fact that it is impossible to properly minimise a window. On MS-windows, you can minimise to the task bar. On a Mac, you can either minimise the entire application (you don't see it alltogether), or you can 'minimise' to a stripe which runs the length of the application. This goes for applications, files and, to some extent folders. I often need to have several windows open, which means I am left with 5 or 6 stripes on my desktop. All are the same colour, so hardly distinguishable. A right mess.

I also dislike the fact that you can only quit an application through the file menu. You can close a window, but that doesn't close the application. If I only have one browser window open, why doesn't closing that close the application? (and due to the Mac's memory management, you don't want these applications to remain open).

I also find that many Mac applications open too many windows. OS9 is slightly better, but on OS 8, if you do a search, it will open one window for typing your search term, and then a separate window for every search result. All have to be closed separately (unless you close the application). Having said that, some applications do close when you close the window. This is inconsistent.

In windows, I like being able to navigate folders using forward and back. The Mac only allows you to do that in a very roundabout way.

I guess I'm a bit anal about having a clean desktop, but I find Windows far leaner.

Word for the Mac is a bit of a nightmare as well. When using Times, it is often impossible to see whether two words are separated by a space or not. Graphs that have been created on a PC will look completely different when opened on a Mac. Lines will go from normal to bold, and legends may or may not suddenly have borders on it. I guess that is a Microsoft problem, but it does annoy me.
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:ncw
ID: 8554033
The hardest part is who do I give the points to. I propose to give them to danielf, if not for any other reason than you've probably given me the most reasons for me to be happy to stick with Windows - especially since I've just built a new PC!

Thanks everyone.
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LVL 31

Expert Comment

by:rid
ID: 8555131
I have one Mac - and I run Linux on that one, which seems to be the best way to use the hardware.... Comments from danielf are on the mark!

Cheers
/RID
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LVL 1

Author Comment

by:ncw
ID: 8562791
Thanks everyone for all the comments
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