07-15-2007, 08:16 PM
I used mac-forums when I was trying to decide on whether to stick to Windows machines or get a Mac, so I thought I'd post my experience. Sorry it's long, but might be useful for a switcher.
First off, I am 27 and have used Windows (3.1, 95, 98, 2000, NT, XP, 2003, Vista) for about 15 years. I am a Network Admin/Support for a medium sized company using Microsoft and AIX products. I also used several Linux flavours during college. My only Mac experience to date was in middle school and for a short period in math classes during college.
My first inclination to buy a Mac was that I spend all day looking at Windows machines and for that reason, I tend to avoid using a computer at home. The other is that I wanted a small (PORTABLE) notebook with simple features that worked without hassle.
Here's what I wanted: A notebook PC that was compact and portable. I could put it in a bag and pull it out to check e-mail whenever I wanted and surf the web if I was bored. I could load all of my pictures and put them in an e-mail or put them on the web. I could close it up, put it in the bag, and the next time I opened it up I'd be back where I started and do it all over again.
My last PC was a toshiba laptop with XP. It has been a great computer, but due to size and battery length it has not moved much from my desk in 3 years. My girlfriend has a dell inspiron that seems to work well, but it just doesn't have the build quality I'm looking for. I tested a macbook and one of our old employees had an ibook that he raved about. I was pleased with the interface and functionality.
So, I decided on a macbook because of it's size and upgraded the ram to make sure it would last a while. A macbook pro would have been the choice had it been offered in the smaller case (I wanted small). I found PCs in the same configuration to be equally or more expensive. Therefore, I bought it.
Portable... yes. I love that. No problem taking this thing anywhere. My Verizon phone tethers perfectly via bluetooth on the outside chance that I can't find wifi. The apps work, iSight is fun to play with and functional when I want to take a quick picture of something and get it out. NeoOffice is installed and I haven't used it because I mostly do my personal word processing/spreadsheets with Google Documents. Gimp is the same as it always has been, so I'm happy with that. iChat handles all of my chatting needs (AIM/Google Talk). Iphoto does a great job organizing my photos. Dashboard is fun sometimes, but I don't care a lot about it. The battery lasts more than as long as I could need it.
Well, I've had a few application errors that got on my nerves. Apps occasionally hang and misbehave, but usually a software update or restarting the machine after installing will take care of them. I don't see anything that leads me to believe it's a hardware fault. I have had no persistent problems. The black book does take a lot of fingerprints, but they don't seem to bother me any more (blend together?). The keyboard shortcuts are taking time to get used to versus the windows versions, too... that's about it.
I'm a tech junkie and a very busy person who rarely sits in the same place for very long. This macbook has been a great addition to my arsenal. I'm glad I decided on it versus a Windows PC that I would probably have gotten tired of by now. This is exactly what I wanted.
That's my experience!