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QotD: When to Mac

Question: If you weren't always a Mac user, how did you come to be a Mac user?

My Answer: I've always been a Mac user, though for a few months my freshman year of college I used my roommate's PC. Then I bought my own Mac.

You are encouraged to answer the Question of the Day for yourself in the comments or on your blog.

15 Responses to "QotD: When to Mac"

  1. I'm the classic "switcher".

    I loved the Apple II. Bought everything from InCider to the ProDOS manual - and wrose yet, read the source code comments.

    But I loved what Microsoft (MicroSoft?) was doing in the early 90s. Back then? "It just worked." Office 4, VB3... then 4... then 5...

    I was tempted to buy a Mac when I heard about the BSD base of OS X. Yet, I liked the promise of .NET and the XML behind it all.

    My turning point was - seriously - downloading iTunes to my Windows PC 18 months ago. A few months later I bought an iPod. A month after that, a PowerBook.

    I now have a PowerBook as my "production" box, an iBook that's beeen running Tiger since mid-November, and a dual 2.5G PowerMac wasting away (for now) on Tiger server.

    My Windows top of the line laptop? Gathering dust in my closet since March 2004.

  2. I'm quite a recent switcher.

    I have used PCs since I was 11 (11 years ago!), and that was my first 'real' computer since using my Spectrum 48k, then my Spectrum +2, and then an Amiga A600.

    I used it for everything, but found that one of my school-friends work always looked better than mine, even though I was using the same fonts and everything. I laughed at him only having one mouse button, but secretly, wanted to buy a Mac, but there was nowhere that sold them, or the software, anywhere near me.

    So, I kept with the PCs, continually upgrading, until around March last year. I managed to scrape together enough money for a 12" iBook, and absolutely loved it, despite me having to have 2 replacement machines because the first ones were faulty.

    I loved it so much, that I'm writing this on my iMac G5 20" with 1GB RAM, and I evangelise Apple and the Mac to everyone I can!

  3. I hated Windows with a passion but, after being forced to use a Mac for a quick job, I thought it was even worse - WTF, how do I get the floppy out?

    What I wanted was a Unix machine, but Linux was a pig to install at home and I couldn't get it running on a laptop.

    For a while I fell in love with BeOS, but there were no apps for it, and they never bothered to make it multi-user.

    Then, one day I accidentally drove my car over my Compaq laptop. I had to buy a replacement, but what? The new PowerBook was gorgeous, and Mac OS X was Unix-based, so I bagged one.

    Been in love ever since.

  4. I switched for OS 10.1, back in Christmas of 2001. Haven't looked back since.

  5. I started with an Apple //e. Then in 1985 I discovered UNIX and decided I wouldn't buy another computer until I could have UNIX on my desktop (so I used my //e as a smart terminal to the campus machines, connected at a "blazing" 9600 baud). And saved up money for the time I could get the machine I wanted.

    In 1991, I bought a NeXTStation Color -- it had what I wanted: UNIX, GUI, and curiously enough, it was from a company run by Steve Jobs.

    When Apple bought out NeXT and the NeXT executives managed to take all the top spots around 1997, I bought my first Mac. The first of many...

    So I guess I keep buying computers from Steve Jobs, and have been doing so for over 20 years. Despite that, my first Mac wasn't until the late 90's. Go figure!

  6. I'm a pretty classic "switcher" as well. I wrote my first BASIC program on a Timex ZX81 when I was 8, and have been using PCs ever since.. 286's, 386, 486, various pentiums and had a laptop, all homebuilt (except the laptop).

    Two years ago I shot out on my own to do freelance development.

    Last year I bought a Mac because a client of mine required my designs to work perfect on a Mac. Got a Dual 450 Powermac off ebay for $600. After about 2 days, My windows PC was moved to the back corner, and the Mac is now my main machine. It is just so damn easy to use, so much software is so well designed and targeted to guys like me, and it's based on Mach and BSD to boot.

    I will never buy a PC as my main workstation again. Hopefulyl I'll be able to buy a faster Mac next year.

  7. I've been using Windows AND Mac since I was born. There's been two periods of around four years each when there wasn't a Mac in the household, but I've never put down either platform as such. I currently own a PowerBook G4 (15" Superdrive of last December) and a 2.6GHz Pentium 4 desktop, both with 1GB of RAM.

  8. My father worked for IBM for 27 years, so in the mid 80s there was no question about which computer we would own. First it was the IBM PC 5150, then the XT... then the Macintosh came out. I drooled over it, but my father would hear nothing of my begging. I was offered a PCjr instead. In subsequent years I owned countless other IBM PC and PS/2 models.

    Fast forward to college, where I first met Unix in 1988. I knew instantly that was where my computing future lied. A year or two later, I purchased a NeXT Computer Prototype (better known as a NeXT Cube, but mine was an internal machine, no serial #). I still own that NeXT Prototype.

    I used the NeXT as my primary machine for many years, until its 68030-25 was just unbearably slow for regular use. Then I switched to Linux, but the quality of the user interface was just lacking, so I dual-booted Windows for Quicken, and occasionally a word processor and spreasheet. When I got married, the wife wouldn't tolerate Linux, so she took the Windows machine and I used a Linux box.

    I didn't pay much attention when Apple bought NeXT, until several years later when a buddy kept talking about "oh ess eks" (he didn't call it OS Ten for a long time). I was like "what's with the X? Is that a play on X11 or something?" He kept saying "look into it - it's Unix, you'll like it." "Uh huh... it's a Mac, right?" He was a die-hard Machead, so I thought it was all just a big joke.

    I didn't make the NeXT-OS X connection until I saw 10.0 in the spring of 2001. (I think.) My employer sent me to some training, and the trainer had 10.0 on his system. I got a demo of it and instantly recognized the NeXT heritage, so I had to have one. Also, my Windows 2000 laptop died ON THE PLANE on the way to the training, so they overnighted the only other spare laptop they had: a PowerBook G3 (Lombard). My computing life was changed forever, and I bought a G4 Cube (to match my NeXT Cube).

    What brought me to OS X was the "Unix underneath, pro apps on top" bit of it. I can have my BSD Unix and my MS Office 2004 & Quicken too. I'll be a Mac user until OS X is no longer Unix based... which is probably at least 20 years from now, or maybe forever.

    Thanks - I love telling my story, and I have enjoyed reading all the others here too. 🙂

  9. I left Macintosh somewhere in the midst of System 7. Did unix, windows, and later Linux. Came back for OS X. Nerd-vana. A nice unix environment, but I could still run common commercial apps (and the edutainment software that kids like). So while my daughter plays "Reader Rabbit", I can still ssh in and do "real work". 😉

  10. I have always been a UNIX guy. I used the NeXT platform extensively in college. My opinion is that the Mac sucked before OS X. When Apple released X, I switched immediately.

  11. So while my daughter plays "Reader Rabbit", I can still ssh in and do "real work".

    Try: sudo say Time for dinner! 😉

  12. The first computer I ever used was an Apple IIe at school. (second grade)

    The first computer I owned was an Apple IIgs.. mostly because that's what my three best friends had, and I was used to using the Apple II. (But the GS was such as nice upgrade over the 8-bt models!) Most of what I know about classic Mac programming comes from articles comparing the Mac toolbox with the GS toolbox. (they're very similar, although the GS toolbox designers learned from a few mistakes made in the original Mac toolbox) I still own my GS, but I only power it up once every two years or so.

    My first exposure to the Mac was in junior high (the Mac Classic) and I used them more in high school (everything from an LC II to a PowerMac 8100)

    My second computer was a Mac clone (a PowerComputing PowerTower180e .. basically a PowerMac 7200 motherboard with a 180 MHx PowerPC 604 in a tower case.) in my freshman year of college.

    My third computer was an iMac G4 (800 MHz) and that's what I still use at home. (I think I will probably upgrade next year.. I use a dual 2.0 GHz PowerMac G5 at work so my home machine is starting to feel rather slow..)

  13. At least one story from someone who did not switch from PC to mac, so I'll butt in.

    Had sinclair. Had Apple IIe. Saw where 16 bit "IBM compatibles" would make inroads. Did not get IIgs, but looked at Amiga. What pushed me to Mac was the LaserWriter. Got Mac Plus.

    A few years down the line, I have had to dip into Wintel for one reason or another. DragonNaturallySpeaking for my dads business. Free Windows comptible only software. Some niche hobbyist software that just isn't there for Macs.

    But I kept my Plus, and macs as my primary tool. My PB145 didn't have the oomph I needed for Midi sequencing, it didn't get much use. Then the first G4 and first ibook, and then OS X. Now, time for a hardware upgrade....

  14. ever since the SE/30

  15. My wife stole my Thinkpad T40 when her (my old) Thinkpad 600x developed a loose connection in the battery compartment and became exceedingly flaky for portable use. I bought an Al-book on a whim because I had been waiting since Apple acquired NeXT for a stable, updated version of NeXTStep on Mac hardware.