Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Are You a Mac or a PC?

Confession time: I’m writing this post from my new MacBook.

Now, I am totally a PC person. My family has owned one in my entire life; I can vaguely remember messing around with “the Macintosh,” as we called it, when I was about four. It had a primitive blue-gray user interface and a huge, clunky, white-plastic-turning-yellow monitor. Since then, we’ve been all PC. Now, I have a DROID Razr. Anti-Apple all the way…or at least, I was.

In general, I’m against their policies and principles. You can develop for Android from any operating system, get your apps onto a device (and into the market) for free, and mess around all you want, for free. Apple doesn’t let you (legally) even test your apps on a device without paying a $99 developer’s fee. On top of that, you can’t develop for iOS devices without Xcode, Apple’s coding program, which of course will only run on a Mac operating system. By the way, did you know it’s illegal to install OS X on a non-Apple computer?

This has presented a bit of a moral dilemma for me. I really, really, really don’t want to give Apple 1,000 of my hard-earned dollars, because that feels too much like supporting the company. Which I don’t. On the other hand, the computer science geek in me is excited about owning such a flipping beautiful machine. Really, you can’t fault Apple on its hardware, and I do like the operating system. It’s like family, right? You can’t choose it. It’s not the computer’s fault it was made by Apple.

Having used a Mac Mini all summer (as well as a sad excuse for a PC with less computing power than my calculator), I do appreciate the design of OS X. I love how easy they’ve made designing user interfaces for apps. In some ways, developing for iOS is a lot easier than for Android—minus the week it took, after FINALLY getting the developer’s license, to figure out how to get an app onto my test iPad.

I finally caved in and bought the MacBook yesterday after work, because my PC has now crashed two days in a row and it was making me nervous—not to mention trying my patience when it took five minutes to load a webpage. And then reload the same webpage because Flash stopped working. It was time for something new.

So am I now a Mac? I’m still not sure. Can I be a hybrid? A Pac, maybe? Just because I have a Mac doesn’t mean I support Apple, does it? It just means their need to control every detail and their inability to be flexible will have forced one more person to overpay for their hardware. So, I may own a Mac; but I am still a PC.
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