The New Macs Blow My Mind

It’s been a while since I wrote about Macs. Here are some of my recent thoughts….

Barely have I tried OS X. Haven’t experienced the wonders of iLife, GarageBand, Safari, also the iPod, and all the new ultra-fast and fascinating hardware. Still sloggin’ along with my blue-and-white G3 with the classic OS, I am, but the recent reports here at MyMac have made me so interested in the new Apple software and hardware. Is it time to upgrade?

Alas, I’ve been missing out on the PodCasts here at MyMac.

Of course, it is time to take my blue-and-white G3 over to my Mom’s and let her use it for email, et al. Of course, it is time to immerse myself into OS X, Unix, all the required David Pogue books, not to mention all the great content here at MyMac and the other Mac advocate Web sites. Of course, it’s time to buy a new Dual 2.5 GHz Power Mac G5 with the 20-inch screen (anything larger may cause me to go blind quicker).

Yet circumstances now bind me. I cannot move forward with these dreams. I must wait for (or pursue?) a new business opportunity that will allow to work at home two days per week and carry my Mac mini in it’s appropriate case back and forth from the office (and commuting is what it is). Dream away of these things, and maybe they will happen for me? Picture a dock station for the Mac mini at both workstations that are totally set up, monitor and most everything. The mini just snaps it in. Has someone already thought of this? (I’m thinking of something far simpler, but I love the idea.)

I reminisce about a time when I was using Macs everyday for a publication of about 250,000 readers. Things went so smoothly with those slow, old Macs. Mine was an LC II. The text was rendered so much better than anything I’d seen. WordPerfect 2.0 or 2.1 was a fine piece of software, with a very elegant interface and easy-to-use command options. That’s what I used. And the staff was networked, so when I was finished with my work all I needed to do was drag and drop it into a folder on my desktop for my editor, where it would appear for her or him. It was a real simple publishing process and it helped make work a pleasure. I learned to operate an early version of Quark, too. At the time, I really, really appreciated Macs for publishing. I couldn’t conceive of anything much more useful.

This was at High Times magazine BTW.

I was (still am, sort of) an editor-writer and for me this machine worked amazingly, especially after having spent a couple years at jobs that used DOS machines and software made for them. Macs immediately struck me as just wonderful for ease of use and also for getting jobs done with minimum complication. How great a thing this was after two years of squinting at the orangey brown text on the little cheap screens connected to those DOS machines. I think the Free DOS Project is hilarious. All those commands to be memorized! Of course, on a Mac it didn’t hurt to know the simple commands but on the mouse-less DOS machine it was required. Everything required keyboard strokes and it was laborious and distracting. The Windows machine at AT&T and Merrill Lynch … well those stories will have to wait.

The Future Looks Like the Past … NOT
Now I’m picturing something like the old Pioneer stereo ad with the guy getting blown away by the Pioneer speakers. Only this time, in the present, it’s a guy in a room in a comfy chair, a hand-gadget the size of an iPod in his hands, speakers and the screen is the size of a wall. (The computer, printer and all other peripherals are in another room or hidden behind a moveable wall). All media needs are more than satisfied. Of course, the man is blown away.

I don’t know. The digital lifestyle … Is it really appropriate for humans? Is it healthy?

I say who cares…. Most of us know when we are not paying attention and what that means.

It’s always a pleasure to see Macs actually working, and people focused and working with them. And they are, I know. May this increase and continue for ages.

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