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Testers and Switchers


I have never contended that a Mac was for EVERYONE, anymore than I would insist that a Mercedes is the best car for everybody.

What I feel do strongly about is that a Mac is a better computer for MOST people who use Wintel machines — and the main reason that they are using Wintel boxes is that they have never truly tried out a Mac. All I would expect of any computer buyer is that they give a Mac a fair trial.

Fortunately, that seems to be happening more these days, primarily for these four reasons:
1 - Many of the people who have bought the runaway hit, the iPod, are also considering
     a Mac. The press had dubbed this the Halo effect. This USA Today article is typical.
2 - Apple has been in the news a lot, and has received a substantial amount of positive
     publicity. In addition to the iPod, many articles are about the success of its stock,
     and there continues to be favorable projections from numerous financial analysts.
3 - The low price Mac mini has likewise been widely and well-reviewed, and many
     price-sensitive PC users are giving it a look. It is particularly attractive to PC switchers
     as they can throw away their bland beige box, plug in the Mac mini, and keep their
     existing monitor and keyboard.
4 - The primary switch cause (in my experience) is that PC users have simply had it with
     the incessant viruses and spyware that they are subjected to in the Windows
     platform. The facts are that in the last four years or so there have been some
     80,000 viruses identified for Windows, and ZERO for Mac OS X. Here is a
     sample discussion of the situation. This profound difference is a powerful motivator.

Of course none of these reasons would be effective if people were genuinely happy with their Wintel experience. Not surprisingly, many are not.

In other sections of this site I have referenced many of the inherent shortcomings of the PC choice. But, just in case you feel I have an unreasonable bias here, please read the specifics of our short summary about Microsoft — most of which is from Wintel people.

Peter Burgel says it well: “Probably the most irritating aspect of the ongoing Mac and Windows debate is the fact that people who have never worked in a Mac environment are the most outspoken about how ‘bad’ the Macs are. Go figure! ... People are creatures of habit, and what we’re comfortable with is always considered better than the dreaded unknown. Some people equate comfort level with quality (ya think?). If I don’t understand it — I don’t like it! That’s why most of our parents drove either a Chevy or a Ford in the 50’s and 60’s. A Chevy owner wouldn’t be caught dead admiring (or worse yet, driving) a Ford. We’ve just taken this debate to the next level.”

Here is a sample of some recent stories appearing about people who have made the forward migration switch:

In April of 2005, Paul Graham says that “All the best hackers I know are gradually switching to Macs. My friend Robert said his whole research group at MIT recently bought themselves Powerbooks. These guys are not the graphic designers and grandmas who were buying Macs at Apple’s low point in the mid 1990s. They’re about as hardcore OS hackers as you can get. The reason, of course, is OS X.”

Charles Cooper (an executive editor for CNET News) recently wrote Switching to a Mac — ain’t ever going back, in which he says: “Twenty years after logging on for the first time, I’m logging off — forever. No, I’m not retiring but I am finally through with that soul-stomping repository of bad karma known as my PC. And after chucking the machine down the dumpster, I won’t ever look back because, folks, I’ve switched to the Mac... So it’s goodbye protected mode. Shalom Ctrl-Alt-Delete. Auf weidersehen application registry. Meet me at autoxec.bat’s silver anniversary party.”

At the LegalTechnology website, this January 2005 report from a Linux and PC user says “...As an experiment, I started playing with a Mac this year, and the experience has been an eye-opener. Over the course of the year, I’ve found that the Mac has a number of advantages over Windows-based systems, not least of which is the fact that most viruses and spyware are specifically designed to exploit weaknesses in Windows... After six months of using an Apple PowerBook as my primary computer, I am sufficiently impressed that if forced to select between a Windows-based system and a Mac, I would chose the Mac.”

This is a well-written story (Feb 2004) about virus and spyware experiences on Macs and PCs... In Remembering Why I Switched, this former PC person tells a painfully similar tale.

Up until May of 2004, David Blumenstein was the Chief Technology Officer of a global advertising agency. As he relates: .“A good portion of my life has been spent managing enterprises running Microsoft Windows and Unix networks, and while the latter never ceases to amaze, the former has proven to be an endless parade of mind-numbing and costly annoyances. The amount of time spent fighting worms and viruses, combating spyware and malware, and applying countless security and system updates finally took its toll on me... I am now a Mac-head. Somehow it crept up on me. Now I cannot envision myself latching on to an Intel/AMD machine running Microsoft Windows.”

According to a 2004 survey of iPod users by financial analysis firm Piper Jaffray, Macs are basking in the reflected glory of the iPod, with some who own the music player saying they have already or are intending to ditch their PCs for Macs. Gene Munster, Piper Jaffray senior research analyst, said the iPod halo effect will make a difference to Apple for a while to come. “We’re in the very early innings of a multiyear trend,” he said.

Dru, at his Druware site, says ”I am a developer. I am a ‘Switcher’ to a Mac. I am, for the first time in a long time, happy with the computer that I do my day to day work on. Oddly enough, this comes as a complete shock to me. You see, I am a Windows developer. I write code that targets the Windows platform every day. I have been doing so for several years now. Over the years, I’ve used, and developed on the Microsoft platform, because it was what I could afford and what I knew. It was not because I was happy doing so. I can say that at times I enjoyed working on the platform. These times are usually followed by bouts of severe annoyance and anger at poor design, poor documentation, or more often the Microsoft Marketing Machine pulling the rug out from under the legs of the small developers...”

This revealing article talks about hidden switchers, or voyeurs. “A cabal of Mac fanatics is working at Microsoft, and Lenn Pryor, a director of Windows platform evangelism, is one of them.” Phillip Torrone, director of product development for advertising company Fallon Worldwide, says “I live in Seattle and know a lot of Microsoft people. Lots have Macs. I see tons of Microsoft people at the Seattle Apple stores. I’ve heard Microsoft people admire and talk about Apple a lot, and sport iPods.... I think a lot of Microsoft people want Microsoft to be more like Apple...”

Ernie the Attorney is now over one year into his Mac switch. His position is clear: “computers should be easy to use and they should, as much as possible, configure themselves. Having used Macs and PCs extensively over the past 10 years, I can tell you it’s not even a close contest. Apple computers are easier to use and configure.”

In mid 2004, in what may well be Apple Computer’s largest coup in the Australian enterprise space, the NSW Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA) announced that it will deploy 1200 Apple G4 iMacs across 140 registry offices. A statement Computerworld obtained from the RTA reveals the G4s will be used as point-of-sale terminals for its counter staff to handle RTA customers transactions across “prepared business applications” as well as for “collecting data and payments and issuing licenses, registration certificates and receipts for various transactions”. The move away from Wintel desktops also appears to reiterate the recent strong stand by the NSW government to seek alternatives to wholly proprietary operating system kernels — and the licensing models that go with them — where cost effective and viable alternatives exist. To this end, the RTA is making no bones about its preference for open standards and open source, with what appears to be more open source action slated for the near future.

James Kahan is the IT Director for Cegedim USA (Philadelphia), and is a recent Mac convert. He explains his reasoning in a detailed three page article, which includes “There are quite a few functions in OSX that allow you to do things that are unimaginable in Windows. For example if you want to grab a picture off of a website you just drag and drop it to your desktop... Of course there are always the Linux benefits too. There are almost too many to mention. The Apple download section is filled with great freeware or shareware and if you are a developer the possibilities are endless. RealBasic (pro version) will allow you to convert your existing Visual Basic projects into OSX or Linux executables... I know this article seems like a long advertisement for Apple, but now I understand why Mac users are such zealots. I am so amazed by the fact that everything just works that I feel the need to convert everyone I know. ”

This server user relates his experiences here. He started out trying a Mac by getting an iBook. “My Sony notebook weighed twice as much and lasted a third as long.... It took me a year to go from a die-hard Windows user and Apple dissident to a proud Mac user... Right now (December 2004) the Mac is the tool that works best for me.”

At Amazon they are reporting that a VERY high percentage of Apple computer buyers are former Wintel users — maybe as high as 48%. (PS - Amazon has very good prices for Macs.)

Also at Amazon, this is a typical purchaser’s review (this one posted December 2003): “After 15 years of PCs, I got a Powerbook last year and fell deeply in love with it. Then I decided to get the dual G5. At work, we had just bought PCs for all the software developers (8 months before) and the bloody HELL we went through when we had to take them from 1GB to 2GB of RAM was insane. Since getting my G5, I’ve easily gone up to 3 GBs of RAM. Having the room to go to 8GB is wonderful. I have NOTHING bad to say about this machine, it’s the best setup I’ve ever used, and I have a database loaded on it, doing Java development, and using Final Cut Express and iTunes, etc. Connectivity is superb. And Panther is a joy — no question the best OS I’ve ever used.”

Dr. Barrall is the CTO, Executive Vice President and co-founder of BlueArc Corporation and the principal architect of its core technology: the SiliconServer Architecture. He has found the light. He explains here how a diehard PC person was amazed at the power and ease of use of a Mac.

Ken Newquist, a webzine editor, posted Why I Switched To Mac in July of 2003. In part, this long explanation says: “What did the Mac offer that got me to spend my hard-earned cash on their computers instead a Windows box? It’s a lot of little things that added up to one towering incentive, and that incentive can be summed up in two words: user experience... I use PCs and Macs every day... Despite all the hype to the contrary, I find Windows XP Pro to still be crash-prone... for me, Macs are about as perfect as a computer can be.”

Stuart MacKenzie is a software engineer and a self-proclaimed geek. He details his 2003 oddessy in a three page article on OSNews. In recounting his switch he says that “... There were pleasant surprises around every corner.” He was won over by the “beauty, functionality, and sheer simplicity of the Mac’s operating system and software... I don’t think of my PowerBook as much as a computer as it is a tool that helps make my daily life integrated and simpler.”

George Emerson wrote this 2003 Globe and Mail story Mac-ceptional, where he says “The battle for home-computer supremacy is finally over: Mac wins — by a mile. Apple’s newest desktops and laptops are probably the best personal computers ever made. I say this as someone who, until recently, was a pro-Windows person.” He then elaborates why Macs cost less and save you time and enable you to do more. He concludes saying “All in all, there’s no compelling reason not to switch... You won’t go wrong with a Mac.”

In January 2004, Steve Johnson (who has a Degree in Computer Information Technology, and twelve years of exclusively PC experience) wrote: "Something I have learned by switching to the Mac platform is that it truly is different from the Windows world. I have learned to work differently on my computer and also gained new interest in things like multimedia. It still amazes how elegant my iBook is compared to other PC laptops — there is no comparison. I have switched and I will never look back."

This PC Magazine piece says, “Apple iMac: Bold New Look, Software Bundle Woos Converts.” They go on to say “If the crowd in our labs is any indication, Apple has a success on its hands with the new iMac. Even jaded veterans of the platform wars stopped by to admire the machine’s innovative design, attractive hardware complement, and excellent software bundle....It’s an exceptionally well-designed product at a reasonable price.

In this accounting Charles Wagoner offers the tale of how he took his company from a fairly large Wintel network to the Mac. Better yet, when he began the process he had been a convert to the Mac platform for only 6 months. In part he says: “Isn’t it amazing, with all the frustration, which comes seemingly as a feature of Windows, just how much people are willing to put up with? Having worked for a Wintel-based PC company, I saw my fair share of this. The biggest problem was my boss’ arrogant ‘time is money’ philosophy, which in return sacrificed quality. All of his clients, due to not knowing any better, not only settled for the many technical problems, lost e-mails, lost files, and eventually, lost money, but would dismiss it as something that went hand-in-hand with using computers. That is very unfortunate... I love the Mac platform and the awesome community of users behind it! I’m glad I made the switch. It has made my work life as a network consultant a lot more enjoyable.”

In Dude I’m Getting Rid Of My Dell, pre-law student Andrew Carson says, “After years as an uneasy PC user, switching to a Mac has been nothing short of a study in usability. Before a friend introduced me to the refined simplicity of OS X, I had always assumed that the way computers worked and the way my mind worked had to be at odds. Windows worked a certain way and it was therefore my job to bend my mind around its redundant complexity. But OS X was immediately different...

Mark Morford writes in this October 2003 expose in SFGate about his first Apple experience. After admiring the superb engineering quality of the Mac (noting that he handled it with “astonishment and even a trace of reverence”) he then experiments with OSX for awhile. After easily putting it through its paces he observes “Where’s the pain? Where’s the hassle and the 3,000 setup steps and the sense that I’m drowning in a sea of programmer jargon and ubergeek hell?” Where indeed!

Tech writer Tom Yager writes in this 2003 InfoWorld piece Windows Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, and says the switch is permanent. Here is an earlier related story.

Not to be outdone, Chad Dickerson, CTO of InfoWorld pens this story in September of 2003: Moving To A Mac. He starts off by admitting that he has written unfavorably about the Mac in the past. No more, now that he has really tried it. “My experience with OS X felt like crossing a chasm.” He ended up replacing a Linux server and a PC client with one G4 Mac, because “I did more with less.”

Internet security specialist Douglas Schweitzer writes about his conversion in this September 2003 ComputerWorld story A PC Guy Goes Mac. He observes that “After using it for a month, I can truly say that it is as fast, as stable and as secure that Apple promised that it would be... All in all, I’m very pleased with my new computer and glad I took a ‘byte’ of the Apple.”

In their February 2003 issue, Kiplinger’s has a detailed article (fee to see it) titled: “Make Mine A Mac.” The thrust of the story is “Lower prices and better software have made switching from a PC practical.” The piece gives several examples, like “When it comes to video, pictures and music, Apple’s TV ads hold true: Getting a PC with Windows to deal with such media files is cumbersome and involves downloading and tinkering with software and drivers — like dancing with an elephant, and the elephant is leading. But you’ll feel like Fred taking Ginger for a whirl with Apple’s multimedia software programs: iMovie, iDVD, iPhoto and iTunes. And that ease of use applies to using a Mac in general: the Mac OS operating system is far simpler than Windows.”

In Back To Mac Alan Graham had extensive Wintel experience as a VP of Business Development and Sales of an Internet company He now says, “I would like to take this moment to personally thank Dell, Toshiba, and Microsoft for helping me to change my mind and move back to the Macintosh platform.” And now that he has switched “not only has the productivity and quality of my business improved, but during that time I successfully switched my wife (a designer and long-term PC user) and my in-laws over to Mac OS X.” He concludes with “My switch back to Macintosh was not just a good business decision, it was a life-changing experience. Being a Mac to Windows to Mac user, I can honestly say that the Mac changes you from being a victim of technology to a master of it...”

The headline of this Seattle Times story (registration required) reads Try A Mac: You May Find One Taste Is All That It Takes. In a lengthy discussion about switching, it states “For some time, upgrading PC users with an open mind have considered switching to the Mac... The purpose of switching is to improve upon, not necessarily duplicate, the PC environment.” The same paper also had another worthwhile article: A 5-Step Recipe for a Well-done Apple Switch. (In case you don’t get the significant implications here, Seattle is Microsoft’s home base.)

A ZDNet piece says, “Back in January of 2002, I took on a big challenge. After years as a committed Windows user, I resolved to work exclusively on a Macintosh, to see how the two platforms compared.” This PC person says that the iMac that he switched to was “a whole lot more fun than my Windows machine, and a great creative tool... On the Mac, the computer just doesn’t get in the way of my work as much a PC does... the Mac is a vastly superior platform for digital movies and photography.” Read the several referenced links to other related stories he wrote, for much more detail, including an article where he answers common questions a potential Windows convert may have.

The Check Out This Tough Competitor For Windows PCs author says, “I installed the Mac alongside my trusty Windows 2000 PC with the idea of doing my digital video editing on the Mac while using my Windows PC for everything else. Silly me! I made my first DVD the day I opened the box the Mac came in. I made the second one the next day, after editing two hours of vacation videos in three hours with the Mac’s built-in video-editing software, and then sat for hours in front of my dual-barrel machine while playing Pop Goes the Web Page on the Net. I got my mail working in less than a minute — I doubt that I’ll ever forgive Microsoft now that I know what the word ‘easy’ really means. Could I possibly relegate my double-gig delight to a secondary role? No way.”

This Gannett story says, “While Windows XP comes with a similar selection of utilities, they do not have the simple, uncluttered interfaces of the Mac OS X equivalents, nor the sophistication... OS X comes with a built-in Windows file server, allowing for easy file sharing in both directions. Once enabled, use the ‘Connect To’ feature from the Mac OS X Finder’s Go menu to locate available computers on your network, regardless of whether they are Macs or Windows PCs...”

In the November 2002 issue of Money Magazine, writer Brian Clark reviews three state-of-the-art PCs. He gives the most praise to the iMac, saying “The new iMac is a beautiful thing. Paired with Jaguar, it really does give Windows users a compelling reason to make the switch.

Longtime tech writer, Sandy McMurray, talks about his Mac conversion in this June 2003 article "Lower Your Blood Pressure", at Canada’s GlobeAndMail site. “Mac OS X is stable and reliable, and does what it’s told. I don’t have to deal with unexpected system crashes and blue screen errors. I don’t have to reboot twice a day.” Etc.

For years on his NBC news channel reports and on the radio, Mike Wendland has been known as "PC Mike." He explains here how he found religion in 2003.

A Miami Herald writer decided to try the crossover herself. She labeled the iMac “the consumer world’s most cleverly designed computer”, and the default OS X operating system “Equally attractive and sleek, simpler to learn and run than Windows XP.

The editor of Gizmos Weekly (the “magazine for people who like to make stuff”) wrote in this November 2002 report (registration fee required): “I made the switch. Apple’s new line of laptops, plus one-step migration software made a convert out of me.”

In the Journal Sentinel Stanley Miller says, “Most of my experience with computers revolves around Windows PCs, but the release of the OS X 10.2 operating system — which is also known as ‘Jaguar’ — provided a tempting opportunity to really get to know the Apple experience. How sweet it is...

Read this accounting of how a Linux Guru came to see the light. After checking out Mac OS X in detail he says, “I realized that the dream of Unix on the desktop had been realized. It is indeed possible to have the best of both worlds.

Andrew Sullivan is a former editor of The New Republic. In the last four years, Sullivan has also worked as a contributing writer and columnist for the New York Times Magazine, a regular contributor to the New York Times Book Review, and a weekly columnist for the Sunday Times of London. He has appeared on the Fox News Channel, CNN, MSNBC, and many other ‘pundit’ shows. As the webmaster of the Daily Dish, he talks about his conversion and says, “Since I’ve used my Powerbook, I’ve had zero crashes. My only problem was using AOL in London. But that is AOL’s fault for not adapting to Apple overseas. Otherwise, my Mac is a dream.

The Mercury News reports on a somewhat typical Wintel user. “Chris Pascual is sick of his Windows PC, an eMachine running Windows XP, because it keeps crashing. Pascual, a 20-year-old college junior, is saving up for a new computer, and he’s interested in a Mac, saying ‘Macs are intriguing. They catch my eye. I’m tired of calling technical support.’”

In the August 2002 Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Don Lindich relates that he made the switch last year, and is very happy about it. “With a Mac, programs and peripherals install without fuss, and there are no more missing .dll files, hardware or software conflicts, system slowdowns or surprise crashes. The last time I was forced to reboot my Macintosh was eight months ago, and it was my fault that it crashed. When I use a Windows machine, I have to reboot two or three times a day... In short, if you are looking for a new computer and are open to a superior ownership and computing experience, look at an Apple before you buy.

In PCWorld (yes, PCWorld) Stephen Manes promotes the idea of a Wintel to Mac switch. “Windows users just get used to annoyances that Mac users don’t have to put up with. Exhibit A: the Registry. That nightmarish Microsoft innovation means it’s far easier to move applications between Macintoshes than it is to go through the grueling reinstallation process that keeps PC users clutching their current machines rather than upgrading.”

John Myers of the Richmond County Daily Journal relates: “A newspaper publisher once told me, ‘There’s no justice in the world. The Mac OS is vastly superior to Windows, but the whole world is using Windows and doesn’t know how good the Mac is.’ I agree, but we must live with what is, not what we wish it should be. So, which is better, Mac or PC? No question for me, it’s Macs.”

Thomas Vanderwal has put up an impressive page on his experiences with Windows and Mac OS X, which says in part: “Why have I bought my last Windows-based computer? My problems revolve around the years of headaches of horrible business and technical practices that Microsoft breeds. Their concern is not the customer and their well being, but their pockets. In the 10 years that I have had my own Microsoft OS-based computers (four of them) I have had four complete meltdowns resulting from MS patches or incompatible MS software... My laptop running OS X has been a dream. I don’t know that I would call this an operating system as it has been headache free, it has not conflicted with other software, it allows quick software loads (which are also pain free), and things just work. This is unlike any operating system I have ever used...

This consultant for ABC News says that his entire staff has switched.

This CNN technology writer has written a July 2003 article titled “Succumbing to a Mac attack.” In it he says: “I am thrilled with my Apple Titanium portable, especially the light weight, the slimness, the ultra-wide screen, the ease with which I can custom-burn CDs with iTunes. After 10 years as a Windows person, the new Mac operating system does take some adjustment, but not much.”

The Some Users See Through Windows article talks about a few conversions, including that of a PC diehard, who (after some Mac experimenting) said: “OS X 10.2 (Jaguar) is the best personal computer operating system available. Period. In fact, if my job didn’t require writing about Wintel hardware and software — and if I had the funds to replace all my gear and programs — I’d probably have been a Mac user starting with 10.1.”

Here is an interesting SlashDot story that talks about “My Migration from a Dell Win2k laptop to a TiBook G4” by a web applications developer. After his upgrade “I fell in love with the Mac OS right away. I started working right away. I became immediately more productive than I ever was on the Dell... And, yes ALL my ‘Windows’ files opened-up flawlessly under various OS X applications. Dot zip, dot xls, dot doc, dot ppt, dot pdf, dot you-name-it... Work. Fun. This thing does it all.”

This NewsFactor story (“Windows Dissatisfaction Bolsters Mac”) discusses several of the reasons why businesses are leaving Microsoft products for the Mac.

There are now quite a few blogs where converts are proclaiming there new found insight. Joi Ito’s is somewhat typical when he says: See Ya Later Windoze. "It was much easier than I thought. Now, having switched, I feel euphoric."

In a few sample cases posted at the LEM website, Alan O’Neill writes that an “Internet Article Leads to Mac Addiction.” In a similar vein, Adrian Carter simply says that “Macs Are the More Sensible Option.” And Martin Spenceley writes about his computer development history in “ Sinclair, Unix, NeXT, and Macintosh.”

Esme Vos is an intellectual property lawyer and managing director of Lemon Cloud BV, a legal consulting firm to technology-based companies. She obtained her law degree from Harvard Law School, and an MS in Chemistry from the UCLA. Esme wrote “After 17 years of loyalty to the PC (starting with the IBM PS/2 and ending with a Dell Dimension), I broke down and bought the new Apple iMac.” She gives a humorous overview of her positive experiences with the iMac and her friends’ and relatives’ reactions.

Don Andrews (ref his homepage) wrote me saying “My background has consisted of 35 years in broadcasting, including senior management and host or co-host of four computer related shows in Toronto, Canada. I’ve interviewed Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, CE Software, Palm, and all the rest. I’ve owned approximately 10 computers over the years, on various platforms. Years ago I began to learn computers in BASIC and DOS (about 3 machines), but quickly learned of the shortcomings of those systems. Over the years I’ve upgraded to the Mac platform and have never looked back...”

I have received many emails from enthusiastic switchers (WAY too many to post here). But here is one from Karl, March 2003: “... I bought an Apple about a year ago in an organization which is Wintel-centric. Out of 1400 employees at our site I was the only one with a Mac. Twelve months later my partner has since bought one (after finding OS X so easy to use and fault free, with not a virus in sight) and there are now about 40 staff members who use Macs! (and more who are harassing IT for new hardware of you-can-guess-which particular flavour). I don’t see myself as a fanatic though, the machines tend to sell themselves...”

In late 2003, MacNet had an article where they analyzed the main reasons PC people (who had contacted them) had switched to a Mac. Quite a few people then wrote informative comments about this article. Awhile earlier, MacCentral also ran a story about people who switched, and why they use Macs. A lot of good quotes are found there. Here is an interesting collection of letters (read part one as well) from former Wintel people who are enthused about living Microsoft Free. Some insightful observations here! Another superior resource on this topic is the collection by MacSpeedZone.

Here is Apple’s overview presentation to potential switchers. Here is an informative interview by OSNews, of one of the Switchers that appeared in a former Apple ad. The West Branch Times has an additional easy-to-read background story about another person who appeared in one of the ads..

OK, so you’re intelligent enough to want to give the Mac a try. Your first question is probably: which one? Two articles may help: Which Desktop Mac Is For You? and Which Portable Mac Is For You?... Apple answers what may be your second question: how well will my Mac play with PCs?

Let’s assume you keep moving forward. Written by a web producer Terrie Miller, this informative O’Reilly series of articles is about “I’ve Switched from Windows, Now What?” To also feed the same demand, this November 2002 story answers several typical questions Wintel users usually have. This report goes into considerable detail as to how Windows users can make a smooth transition to the Mac world. And this useful 2004 one is about "Switching To A Mac On A Budget."

Not to be outdone, CNet has had stories about “The Great OS Switch”, plus the Mac Starter Kit which says that it is child’s play to make a switch. “To make things even easier, we picked out the gear that you’ll need to you handle your Mac like a lifelong pro right off the bat. With the right equipment and Apple’s built-in options, you’ll be on your way in no time. And remember: once you go Mac, you never go back...

They could have added that there is now specific software for Wintel users, Move2Mac (and a story about it), that will move their files and preferences over to a Mac. The company says that transferring 500MB of files is a process that takes around 15 minutes. Lastly, if a Windows person has some special attraction to Commander, then they can get Disk Order and be a happy camper.

Microsoft just wouldn’t be Microsoft if it couldn’t copy Apple in almost everything. No exception in this area. In early October of 2002, an ad, titled “Confessions of a Mac to PC convert,” was posted to Microsoft’s Web site. The article purported to be an unsolicited, objective, first-person account of a writer who decided to switch from an Apple Macintosh computer to a PC running Windows XP.

When this unusual claim was investigated, it turns out that she was an employee at a public relations company hired by Microsoft, and had been PAID to say what she said — and Microsoft used a phony stock photo, instead of her real picture in the ad. Due to the immediate bad publicity, Microsoft promptly pulled the “ad” and called it a “mistake.” See these reports by CNet and Mercury News.

What I also find intriguing is how quickly — and with how much power, Microsoft did damage control. For instance, although the page was originally on Google, within one day not only had Google removed it, but also they deleted the cache copy that they keep for almost everything.

But here it is, that very hard to find, infamous page, with additional editorial comment added by GeekTimes.

Conclusion: It’s up to you whether you learn the hard way or the easy way. If you prefer to have your computer experience be less problematic, then SWITCH TO A MAC.

Download a printable pdf version of this document (rev: 5/02/05).

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please email John.

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You step in the stream,
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This page is not here.

rev: August 6, 2007

— Section #12 —