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  • #2291642

    Does Apple still sell computers?


    by xamdam ·

    Yesterday’s commentary (1/13/05) from John Sheesley, Senior Editor – TechProGuild kinda’ rubbed me the wrong way… maybe that’s what John intended.

    John starts off with “It’s just that in almost 20 years of working with computers for dozens of different companies, I can probably count on two hands the number of Macs I’ve had to work with. I’m not living in a sheltered world either,…”

    Uh… John, I hate to inform you big guy… you ARE living in a sheltered world!
    I started out in 1979/80 wire wrapping my own Z80’s and 8080’s, fought my way through CP/M, slogged into and through DOS 1.1 and have really come to appreciate those early days. Not that I want to relive writing binary KEX Kernals and dealing with 16kb of RAM ever again! I’m glad those days are long gone. In those days you really appreciated what code was and how much it took to write lean code. When we first got Windows 3.0 (The first GUI that actually worked) I was amazed at what was possible, but quickly realized what the term stability had meant under command line.

    But when you have so little real world experience with an OS that you create such misinformed statements as above, I just gotta respond.

    I hate to make light of your commentary like this, but I didn’t write it, you did. You say, “The problem comes in when you have to support a Mac in a Windows environment.” Yeah, I know what you mean! You STILL gotta’ support those Windows machines!

    I’m responsible for a fairly substantial hybrid network… and EVERY part of it!

    My Mac’s give me about 400% LESS trouble than the Microsoft boxes and I have 2 to 1 – Mac’s to Microsoft. If I weren’t an in-house admin, I guess I’d really love Windows. They are a constant source of income for consultants and vendors. The constant security threats, viruses and upgrades are the bane of my admin existance.

    I have hundreds of thousands of images to move, thousands of postscript files, millions of data records to handle and I can’t afford the problems that the Microsoft OS’s can leave me with at the end of the day.

    It wasn’t that long ago that I was as rabid a Microsoft user as I am now a Mac Hack. I saw the light and have never regretted my change in aliances to Mac, both personally and professionally.

    I’m only sorry that you haven’t really had the chance to test drive a new OSX box. I think you’ld be pleasantly supprised at how tank like the OS really is. (M1 Abrahms that is.)

    Not that OSX is the be all end all. No computer is or ever will be. There is no “idiot proof” system. The idiots are too resourseful!

    I just wish that those of you who are not knowledgable about Mac would take the time to enlighten yourselves to be more than slaves of the 8088 instruction set.

All Comments

  • Author
    • #3346956

      Religious Holy Wars

      by jamesrl ·

      In reply to Does Apple still sell computers?

      I once worked for a company that had 20,000 Macs installed, and if you are from Durham, you probably know who they are. And they weren’t the only ones. At one point NASA, Boeing, and a number of other large companies chose to use the Mac for much of their workforce, including scientific functionality.

      Was a time when the Mac was a better TCP/IP client, had better math functions, and was better at rendering. If IBM had kept up development on the RISC platform they way they had when they started, it would still be the preferable machine for scientific work.

      I always found Macs more stable. Thats the advantage of “owning” the hardware spec.

      We did always catch flack from the networking crews who kept telling us that Appletalk was a chatty protocol and more difficult to route.

      But over the past years, since I work in a Windows only environment, thats where I have stayed as well. I haven’t run OSX, and my old Mac at home isn’t powerful enough(6100/66). But some of my friends who are using it love it.


      • #3345285


        by pokerjohn ·

        In reply to Religious Holy Wars

        My company gave some of us salespeople the iBook G4. Others
        who have been here longer have IBM’s or Compaq’s.

        We’re now getting big enough to want a centralized CMS. Other
        than browser based, tell me what I can use. Act and Goldmine
        doesn’t make Mac products.

        That’s the problem…the laptop is great as a standalone. But if
        you have to work with others and share applications, it sucks.


        • #3344985

          There are solutions

          by xamdam ·

          In reply to Mac


          I’ve got lots of folks here in similar situations.
          All of our “stuff” interacts pretty seamlessly.

          Now Contact is a possible solution. Although
          you do have a couple of import and export
          hoops to jump.

          Virtual PC and ACT/Goldmine is another.

          Funny story about Virtual PC… I don’t think it’s
          an Urban Legend either…

          There is a piece of the core Windows math
          code that Microsoft had to rewrite in response
          to a failed area of the x86 instruction set that
          intel didn’t catch in the original chipset.

          When Connectix wrote the emulation for the
          x86 set, the first Virtual PC code would fail.
          Ultimately, they had to “break” their code to
          make Windows work!

          At any rate… Virtual PC is actually more stable
          than the majority of the “genuine intel” boxes
          and laptops we have. The real beauty is that
          you can cut and paste directly between both.

          Another solution is FileMaker 7. If you don’t
          want to learn the database, there are also
          vendors who have developed runtime
          solutions. Many of which have excellent import
          and export routines.

          If I weren’t already committed to FileMaker 7,
          I’d seriously be looking at Oracle 10g.

          I know you aren’t probably going to convince
          the entire company to switch, but these (10g &
          FM7) are really excellent platforms to explore!)


    • #3346955

      I’m sheltered too…

      by jessie ·

      In reply to Does Apple still sell computers?

      but at least I have the good sense to REALIZE it. The only reason I don’t see MAC’s where I work, I’m sure, is because my resume doesn’t say anywhere on it that I know anything about a MAC, therefore, the people in MAC houses don’t call me for interviews. That certainly doesn’t mean they’re not out there.

      My husband has been a rabid MAC fan forever. He’s had the chance to work with them mainly because he’s a musician and graphic designer… both VERY MAC heavy industries. For good reason, MAC makes the best (only?) truly robust systems for these types of environments. MS just can’t compete in that arena!

      • #3345312

        Music and others

        by jamesrl ·

        In reply to I’m sheltered too…

        I wouldn’t necessarily say that.

        Once upon a time it was clearly the best platform but these days, its a toss up.

        My brother in law has been doing video editing on computers for years – when he started, the high end solutions like Avid were Mac only. But now he uses PCs for the same task – no difference to him.

        I used to use a Mac for music notation, midi playback etc. But now the same kind of software is readily available and the same quality on the PC side.


        • #3345135

          Ready on the set

          by aceskaraoke ·

          In reply to Music and others

          It may be a toss up on the music scene, but when it comes to video and movie-making Apple seems to have the edge.

          Ever notice when you see a behind-the-scenes or making-of segment you always seem to find an iMac running mock-ups and video clips.

          When I watched making-of footage of both “Finding Nemo” and “Shrek” all I saw were iMacs when I saw a computer (except whenever you see one of those industrial strength workstations or pseudo-supercomputer servers really crunchin’ numbers).

          It may just be that these guys are like me and have a soft spot in their hearts for Apple from their childhood days, but I don’t think so.

        • #3344496

          Yes and No

          by jamesrl ·

          In reply to Ready on the set

          On the editing side, my brother in law’s employer no longer uses Macs, and they do video editing and DVD authoring – one of the larger companies in the country.

          Disney also used to be a big Mac company, but less so today. You are still likely to find Macs in the creative areas at movie studios, and advertising agencies. But those places are no longer exclusively Mac. Finding Nemo was done by Pixar, whose owner is Steve Jobs, one of the original Mac Team – so I am not surpised they are using Macs.

          Once upon a time in the late 80s, I was working with small production companies in Toronto selling movie budgeting and scripting software, and it was almost all Mac based. The CBC had Macs (head of CBC Comedy development was a big Macophile). Broadway Video were producing Kids in the Hall(Lorne Michael’s company who also produce SNL).

          But over the past decade and a half, Macs have become less dominant. PCs are cheaper, and for basic functionality can do it all.


    • #3345022


      by garion11 ·

      In reply to Does Apple still sell computers?

      I am actually thinking of getting one. One of the ones that are going for $499. This iPod singlehandedly is making the Mac cool and popular (for a lack of better terms). I wouldn’t be surprised if in a couple of years or so (partnered with IBM) MACs replace PCs by as much as 25% to 50% in the corporate environment.

      • #3344893

        I just don’t get i-Pods

        by oz_media ·

        In reply to Interesting

        I looked at so many MP3players and the i-Pod was the least appealing to me.

        The volume and sound adjustment was limited, no SRS(which is excellent for headphones),i-Tunes make me ill, battery life was quite sad and it is a cell meaning that you will have to fork out for anew one next year, it skipped!!!, it has mechanical parts and sells for $400.00!!

        So people argue that it holds so much more music than Flash players, where will you be going that you need 6 days of continuous music? What happens when you battery cell dies less than a full day into your trek?

        What if you drop it? I know a guy who dropped one less than a foot onto his desk and it’s dead.

        After much comparisson, I picked the Samsung 256 MB Yepp 780V, it has a nice touch sensitive keypad (not like the little lipstick style players), FM with FM recording, Voice/memo recording, has an input to record from any headphone output (another CD player or MP3 player, DIRECT recording off the internet streaming audio video that even most computers don’t allow, etc.) stores files, BATTERIES LAST NEARLY 20 HOURS!! Buy 4 high output NiHms for $40 and you’re set for two years easily, SRS and Equalization is WAY better than other players WAAAAAAY better, it’s louder, more spacious, excellent low end output etc.

        The ONLY drawback was earbuds, which just plain suck no matter WHO makes them, I invested in some Senn’s and it ROCKS!

        It holds a good days outing worth of music, several full CD’s plus some scattered songs.

        At Christmas I was visiting family and as expected all the neices and nephews had various new MP3 players, so everyone was swapping them around and checking them out.

        On Boxing day, my eldest neice returned her $400.00 i-Pod, bought a Samsung and got a DVD player and movies.

        My nephew returned his $700.00 Nomad and got a Samsung and an X-Box with games.

        WHAT is the hype over i-Pods?
        Because you can invest more money and mae it a boom box?
        Because it hooks up to your car like the MP3 player in the dash?

        Because all the cool kids have one and it’s just plain trendy?

        One reply may be that you don’t have to change/upload music as often. Well if an added $200.00, more money on battery replacement and less actual playtime and less durability outweigh spending less than 10 minutes adding a days tunes than I supposr it would be a fair investment….I SUPPOSE it would be…right?

        I still don’t get it! But as you said “cool and popular.”

        • #3344769

          With iPod you get iTunes.

          by garion11 ·

          In reply to I just don’t get i-Pods

          Pay $1.00 you can get a song (atleast I think thats how it works) and it will only work on an iPod until the day a converter or something comes out. I totally see your point…there are so many more MP3 players out there which are better than iPod (I looked at Dell and Samsung still deciding though), but I guess Apple was the first and it branded it very well…so people stick with it (My neighbor’s best friend’s sister’s husband has one…so I gotta get one too mentality is what drives the iPod these days, lol).

        • #3344759

          You’re right but not about only i-Tunes

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to With iPod you get iTunes.

          Future Shop is a Canadian outlet that is owned now by Best Buy Electronics in US.

          They offer a system called Bonfire that allows the same MP3 downloads, 99 – 1.29 a song, about 4-6 for full CD’s.

          I suppose I have never worried about it, I haev licence to copy MOST music (not to sell it though) plus being Canadian P2P is not yet deemed illegal, thanks to our Constitutional rights, and after that I have an EXTENSIVE CD collection, 100’s of which are still unopened as I just can’t get to them. It’s great fo rlistening to new demos I get sent too, I have more time to devote to them than I used to when at home.

          The best way to figure it out is to go and try them out, most stores get wierd abou tit, just take your own headphones and it shouldn’t be an issue though.

          But honestly, and I seriously wouldn’t steer you wrong here to prove my point, BUY THE SAMSUNG!!

          Better batery life and WAAAAY better sound than the outhers, I mean WAAAAAY better sound! The i-Pod actually has a higher output into the same resistance but the SS in the Samsung makes it the best, especially as they are all around the same price regardless of manufacturer.

          Mine cost $199.00 Canadian, $20 for a 2year over the counter exchange on ANYTHING that goes wrong.

          Check it out, you will not find a single negative review anywhere, except regading headphones. Som ecomplain because it isn’t USB 2.0 but I find that if I can fill it in less than 7 minutes, who cares?

          I am not sure if they are available in US though.

          TWEAK NEWS.NET

          TECH MODS:

          TECH REPUBLIC: 🙂

          (note: battery life even with 740 NiHM rechargeables has exceeded the 12-15 hrs I expected)

        • #3326523

          I admit I like my ipod

          by tomsal ·

          In reply to I just don’t get i-Pods

          …of course I got it BRAND NEW for $200.00 too. (gift card + rebates ate up half the price).

          20 GB is what attracted me to it first, and while you mentioned you dislike the interface, I have had the opposition experience..I think the ipod interface far exceeds most all other MP3 players. Its simple, it does the job and it works.

          I like to load up more than just music with all that space, I have fill up the space by using it with Outlook 2003 transfering contacts, calendar entries (birthday reminders/appointments, etc) also you can store files on the Ipod (of course this is software that apple doesn’t support that does this) so its extra storage to carry too.

          The Ipod in the year I’ve had it locked up twice on me, once was when it was dropped on the floor in my bedroom and another time for no reason I know of — but a simple reset and no problem ever since. Didn’t even lose any data.

          Furthermore, I backup my Ipod — there’s free 3rd party software that allows you to copy your ipod to your hard drive.

          Finally it sounds good to me, the music is real nice.

          So I get plenty of use out of my ipod with 20gb that I only paid $200 for.


        • #3327753

          Well said, but for different use.

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to I admit I like my ipod

          I am a BIT of an audio buff, as you may have guessed by now. :p

          In fact many consider me an audiophile as my entire life and home is built around the music industry.

          I am VERY VERY picky about sound, the i-Pod and all other for that matter don’t even scratch the surface of the Samsung players.

          I get to store files too, not as many due to limited space, but it is good for carrying some docs in.

          The issues I had with i-Pod are battery life being so low, cost of replacement battery cell (I use NiHm rechargables long lasting and high power not avaialable in a proprietary cell). And the Pod’s mechanical hard drive skips, is prone to just dying and just doesn’t stand the test of time for a mobile user. I am pretty active and do a lot of physical work in my shop so I need durability.

          But sound and battery life are what sold me on the Yepp780, it is completely different form their other players but still has the same FLASH memory, which I prefer.

          I fnd 4 hours of music does me fine, if I get bored, there’s always the radio which also works great.

      • #3327897


        by joelz ·

        In reply to Interesting

        I guess I’m sheltered too. I’ve stood by watching the whole MAC vs. PC debate but have never read the answer to this question. If MACs are so superior to PCs, never breaking down, lower TCO,
        secure, etc. why were they phased out and replaced along the corporate computer evolution? Can someone answer this with facts, as opposed to the emotions this subject seems to carry with it?

        • #3327757

          Depends on the company

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to Question

          Most graphic design and publishing houses are 100% MAC based still. MAC is excellent for runnign graphics apps and render intensive programs, like large video edits, digital cartoons, publishing, AutoCad etc.

          As a general purpose somputer they just don’t stand up though as they really bog down in multitasking applications.

          Plus, MS is a sales machine, people buy what they are told to buy, always have and always will, North America is a consumer society that is fed by the media and believes what it is fed most of the time.

          How do you think MS servers became more popular than Novell servers? It most definitely isn’t value for money, ability or performance! 100% marketing!

          Apple actually does ave it’s place, it just isn’t in most company desktops. Unless of course, as noted before, it is a design, graphics or pulbishing house.

        • #3327735

          LOL. Oz has a point…holy dear God and I agree with it.

          by garion11 ·

          In reply to Depends on the company

          Putting the shock aside…it is 100% marketing. North American companies (yes even Canadians) are imo the BEST at marketing their products and services. Sony Beta vs VHS, Apple vs IBM PC, Microsoft vs. Novell, and I am sure there are 100s more with a similar story. Although (out of the examples I listed) I think Apple was the most to blame for its own demise with their arrogance and stupidity in not opening up their technology like IBM had with the PC and thus ended up as the Apple we know today.

        • #3327669

          Chill Garion it isn’t that bad

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to LOL. Oz has a point…holy dear God and I agree with it.

          I seem to remember us agreeing on several topics, OUTSIDE of politics, which is fair enough. I certainly can’t expect you to change ingrained political views based on some pissed off comments of a total stranger. Just as you can’t expect to instill YOUR views on someone who sees a completely different angle than you.

          Don’t be too scared, you haven’t caught anything (that I know of). 🙂 Which reminds me, PENICILLIN!! I keep forgetting to pick up a new barrel of it.
          We got shum pretty shweet looken localsh out here y’know! I have a reasonably dark complexion, maybe I should try and get a band resident card, cheep shmoksh and all!

          Apologeesh to everyone offended by my characterizashun of localsh, eh. They sure beat Vancouverites though!

        • #3323213

          Critical Mass

          by jamesrl ·

          In reply to Question

          I was with a Fortune 100 company which was mostly Mac, then 50/50 for some time. I had been in desktop services, though I had left for another department before they made the decision to get rid of the Macs.

          Alot of it does not come down to the economics of how much the box cost, or how much it cost to support. The Garner group studies showed that the TCO was lower.

          But, the big factor seemed to be that PC sales were growing faster, and some major software companies were reluctant to committ to continuing to support the Mac Market. Microsoft, to their credit, was steadfast in supporting the Mac versions of their products. But some other software companies waivered, and people like me, paid to look 5 years down the road, looked at the real possibility that Apple would lose critical mass and have many third party developers jump ship and become windows only shops. This, and marketing pressure from PC vendors willing to discount their PCs heavily, drew alot of major companies away from the Mac.

          Yes it is to an extent a self fullfilling prophesy.

          I disagree with Oz about Macs in the corporate environment – they do everything that an average corporate user needs – MS Office, IE etc.


        • #3323205

          Of course they do

          by oz_media ·

          In reply to Critical Mass

          The question was if they are still an answer for business. As I said they are still VERY popular but seem to be mainly in the design and graphics industry, which is their real strngth by far, windows boxes do not make good graphics machines.

          A much lower powered MAC will outperform a higher speed PC when it comes to graphics rendering.

          MOst of todays compuuter animation and movie CGI is done on MAC not PC. Some of the best graphice programs are only JUST being ported to work with Windows.

          Wihle MAC does work with office, PC seems to do it a little easier and with fewer problems. I haven’t seen too many MAC based offices in the last few years, though they do exist. In the same respect, I haven’t seen too many PC based graphics houses though, they usually go MAC.

    • #3177754

      You are sheltered on GUIs

      by shockride ·

      In reply to Does Apple still sell computers?

      You state that Windows 3.0 is the first GUI that worked? What about Mac?
      I started my career earlier than yours (My first machine was a PDP/8), but for the GUIs, I think of the first GUI that worked as the Mac GUI. For the PC, the first GUI that actually worked for me was GEM.
      I programmed in GEM and thought it was pretty much equal to Windows 3.0 or better. GEM was first available at the time that Windows 1.0 came out. (Remember the Tile only interface?).

      The only reason that we are not using GEM today is marketing. Windows may suck, but Gates is the consumate marketing person. GEM does not exist today because Digital Research was a good technical company but was awful at marketing.

      I appreciate comments about the performance of the Macs, but it seems bad that you say how long you have been in the business but don’t understand pre Windows 3.0 GUIS.

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