Archive for the ‘mac’ Category

Ok Apple.. enough…

November 21, 2007

I don’t know about you, but the last two Apple ads I’ve seen on TV (the Mac vs PC thing) are really starting to annoy me. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t really like Microsoft. But I’ve always been an ‘underdog’ kind of guy – with Linux being my perennial hero of course ;). Even though in reality Microsoft is Goliath to Apple’s David, these commercials leave me feeling the opposite lately.

And it’s not just the underdog sympathy thing either. It’s the smugness of the Mac guy. It almost leaves me wondering whether all Mac users are somewhat smug. Of course the Mac users I know are no different than most Windows and Linux users I know. But if I were a typical mainstream PC user, I’d start to feel a little defensive about my current Windows PC when confronted with this barrage of ads lately. They were funny to start with but I’m wondering whether anyone else thinks they’re losing their effectiveness and run the risk of backfiring.

Besides, they’ve got a UI to be proud of and a system that works. Why not highlight the benefits of actually using a Mac rather than a Windows PC? And do it without feeling bad for the other guy. They do it with their iPod advertising.

Or even better yet, show a Mac user that’s not some grungy college grad or turtleneck wearing artsy designer type. I think they’ve already tapped that market anyway. Shouldn’t they now be going after the minivan driving moms and dads that populate the mainstream? If you’re trying to capture more of the mainstream market, get a likeable, intelligent celebrity as a spokesperson.  Not Mariah Carey or K-Fed…  but someone like Matt Damon, or Julianne Moore.

There’s a million possibilities.. all of which are likely better and friendlier than a smartass grunge grad delighting in the misfortune of an overweight fat guy in a suit. Poor guy.

Blogged with Flock

One for the Mac guys out there…

October 25, 2007

While I don’t necessarily like Apple’s relatively closed system. I do hold their designers (both industrial and graphic) in high regard. So why then does their new Leopard packaging remind me of a GeoCities webpage motif?

The problem with raising the bar is that you have to meet it every time after that.

Btw, I’ve watched the Leopard tour video just to see how the other half lives. I’ve got more thoughts on that to come, but one thing sticks out. Is it just me, or does the Aqua blue (or graphite) scroll bar just seem to stick out of their new interface like a very sore (and very shiny) thumb. I think the glass buttons for drop down lists etc. still look decent in the various dialog boxes, but when those scroll bars pop up on a general application window they just look completely out of place with the rest of the interface.

Have the aqua controls finally worn out their stay?

Blogged with Flock

Notecase – A Clean and Simple Outliner

October 1, 2007

Whenever I’ve looked for a nice clean and simple outliner for Windows or Linux, I’ve never come up with something that has satisfied me. They either end up being too complex or too.. I dunno.. wacky for my tastes.  I know that a lot of Mac-heads swear by OmniOutliner, but I don’t have a Mac.

Alas, my search seems to be over. I came across NoteCase a while ago and have used it for the last couple of weeks. It’s a clean and simple 2-pane outliner written in C and Gtk. It’s free and open-source software released under BSD license. It does exactly what I want it to do, build a clean and simple outline with no-fuss and no-muss. It also does things like export outlines to html and text file formats. NoteCase will even export to an .exe file which I believe just creates a standalone instance of NoteCase itself, preloaded with the outline you’ve exported. Nice.

It has all the node editing features you’d likely expect, along with standard text formatting, search and replace, and date/time insertion features. The current version is 1.6.9.

All in all it’s a simple, fast and clean outlining program – exactly what I’ve been looking for. Check your distro’s repositories for it, or go here for the different downloads that are available.

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Now there’s something you don’t read about every day…

September 10, 2007

Tom Raftery is using his Vista laptop more than his MacBook Pro. He supposes that the ClearType font rendering is making screen reading easier on his eyes.

The tech blogging space seems so pro-Mac / anti-Vista these days. Talk about walking around with a bullseye on your back. 😉

Funny Pseudo-Anti-Mac Article/Rant

February 5, 2007

What do you get when you mash together sweeping generalizations, top-notch writing, sharp wit and the mac vs pc debate?

This article. [and hundreds of Digg comments as well ;-)]

He spends much of it taking the piss out Mac owners, so if you’re sensitive in that respect, be forewarned. 😉

Underwhelmed But Happy About It

January 31, 2007

Earl Moore is underwhelmed by the relatively quiet launch of Vista. Actually I haven’t been paying much attention to Vista simply because I’m almost well and truly Linux-ized (is there actually a term for that? – there should be..)

However I did know about it since I caught 5 minutes of CNN this morning where Miles O’Brien talked a bit about it, showing an interview clip with Bill Gates and discussing it very briefly with their financial guy. I shook my head a little and chuckled when Miles ended the segment by stating that a lot of people were saying that Vista brought the Windows desktop experience up to OS-X standards and perhaps more importantly ended off with the comment that people could upgrade to Vista or “just get a Mac”. I betcha Microsoft PR was just gleeful hearing that comment this morning. 😉

I also had a couple of co-workers discussing Vista with me today. Of course I took the opportunity to nod repeatedly – yes it looks quite flashy… yes it supposedly requires lots more hardware power… yes it supposedly really cracks down on pirated applications and media.. ever heard of Linux?… I actually run it at home…yes it is actually free…

The impression I get is that while Vista will be no outright failure (it’ll be installed on virtually every PC you buy) there are more and more Linux and Mac types who will have more and more conversations with their non-techie co-workers and friends just suggesting (not pushing it down their throats) that there *are* alternatives out there. My feeling is that while MS is not ceding it’s king of the hill status any time soon, the earth is slowly eroding under their feet. It may take a long while, but I think it is happening right now.

Combine all those water cooler conversations with the fact that the OS itself might be of diminishing importance as more and more services reside on the net irrespective of OS. The resurgence of gaming consoles at the expense of PC-based gaming also makes switching from Windows to something else significantly easier.

The fact that the launch didn’t seem to generate much fanfare only bodes well for the future in my mind. It would be nice to see some real market competition in OS’s again.