Mac on loan, part one
I have a MacBook on loan from Apple
Computer; here it is beside my ThinkPad X40. My first impressions: 1) Wireless networking easier to use than any laptop I have ever seen. 2) “Intuitive” means “whatever you are accustomed to using.” It took me 15 minutes to figure out how to open a new tab in Safari, and I still can’t open a blank one. 3) The keyboard is very high quality but flat keys seem odd to me. 4) Despite quite sophisticated power management the battery life is nowhere near that of my X40. 4) The screen is fantastic. 5) Would it kill Apple to make a real right and left button for me to click on? 6) You have to use a dongle to hook up an external monitor. 7) Though a distinct improvement on earlier MacBooks, it doesn’t strike me as being that durable 8) It enters and recovers from “sleep mode” very smoothly 9) It is really, really fast.
In other news, I got SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop (SLED) 10 installed on my ThinkPad X23. My first impressions: 1) It is easy to use, 2) except for the wireless which I haven’t got working yet, 3) it comes with a TON of very well-designed software. BTW I much prefer OpenOffice to MS Office. 3) The screen looks nicer than with Windows – SUSE apparently has some very good video drivers. 4) It is faster than Windows XP on the same machine. And of course 5) it has a better command line than XP. (I miss my programmable text editor, though. Will have to find a *nix version of Notepad++ and hopefully an Apple version too)
So I have 3 operating systems for the next month. I will definitely write a huge head-to-head comparison ‘round the beginning of March.