iNoob – Epilogue

Mac App Store

Mac App Store (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Well, this was a short series. My sixth month experiment as a PC-turned-Mac user is now complete….and I have a few things to report:

  • I really liked the speed of booting up or restarting.
  • The MacBook Air I used was extremely light, which was helpful given my lower back problems.  Years ago I had an ENORMOUS Lenovo ThinkPad which weighed a lot.  I liked the screen real estate, but had to take a deep breath to lift my computer bag in the morning….
  • Firefox on the Mac is a speed demon, unlike on my Windows machines.  Chrome clocks in about even on either one for me.

  • Operating system level software updates rate evenly, but I found the need to go to the Mac App Store to check for any updates to programs a little annoying.  Granted, on my Windows PC software developers have each instituted slightly different ways of keeping there apps updated, and there is great logic in having it located in one place (the App Store), but on my PC the programs are ‘responsible’ and go get their own updates….they don’t need me to check the App Store for them.
  • Compared to the Full Meal Deal version of Microsoft Office, Office for Mac is, shall we say, lacking.
    • I never could get PowerPoint to work well.  I ended up doing most of my slide decks on my PC at home and then making sure they looked the same on the Mac before presenting.
    • Outlook was pathetic.  Mail management was nearly non-existent and simple things like creating a task or a meeting request from a mail were either missing or very well hidden.
    • Word and Excel worked OK.
    • No Visio or Project for Mac, both of which I needed very badly.
  • The Mac is missing a few things that I take for granted:
    • Locking the screen – oh, come on!…”There’s an app for that?”  I had to purchase an app to get the simple ability to lock the screen when I stepped away from my desk.
    • Alt+Tab between different docs or instances of a browser is missing.  You can tab to or from Microsoft Word, but not between the six documents you have open.
    • I know that the way I manage files is old school/PC-centric.  But in the world of software and operating system choice, I should be able to do it the way I want.  I had to buy an app for that, too.
    • I never did find a blogging tool that works as well for me as Windows Live Writer.  The fact the Zemanta plug-in works in Live Writer clinches it for me.
    • Integrated security log-in.  I had to have a separate password for my Mac and another for company network access.  That’s just silly.  Integrated log-in has been around a VERY LONG TIME.
    • A couple (or even one…) more USB ports would be nice.  Considering the Mac Air has no CD/DVD drive and I required one of the USB ports for the Logitech unifying antenna for my keyboard and trackball, that left me hanging for external storage/back-up or other peripherals I might like to keep using without have to swap them
    • How about a decent docking station?

Those are all of the things I can really call out.  I’m glad to have had the chance to see what all the fuss is about.  The hardware is OK.  The OS….not my choice for productivity.  It is, however, very pretty.

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