Switched to Mac

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March 7th, 2009

My first introduction to Apple was in my early years. A brother of a friend of mine had an Apple PC at home for work. In those days we played a lot of “Dark Castle” on that Apple PC (no idea what the type was/is). I do remember that it was kinda weird that the PC had this weird 3.5″ floppy disk, since my Commodore 64 has those cool Double Sided Double Density 5.25″ floppies… Well after “hacking” them that is.

Years went by (about 20 years), and I fell in love with the Apple iPod 3G. An amazing MP3 player with a 20GB harddisk for lot’s of music. I used the iPod a lot. Mostly in the car to work (with a little help of a Griffin Technologies iTrip). I bought it in the beginning of 2004.
The design, the interface of the iPod was just brilliant…. With this brilliance, Apple made me curious.

Somewhere during the summer of 2004, we began to experience tighter rules at work about the use of the company laptops (the bastards). Those laptops were also used a lot for private things (downloading etc.), and management was restricting this. This was good from a business point-of-view, but sucked big time for personal use. So I had to get a personal laptop for surfing the web, downloading stuff, watching movies, etc.
I always was (and still am) a Microsoft Professional (MCSE on NT4.0 and Windows 2003), and had always worked with the Microsoft operating systems. This also means that I had my fair share of crashes, re-installs etc. Somehow I didn’t feel like reinstalling my personal laptop every year, because of DLL-nightmares, and Internet Explorer “features”.
I have been experimenting with Linux on several occasions, but as soon as I had a piece of hardware which wasn’t detected properly I gave up, because of the config-file-hell you had to go through (I’m sure things have improved in the last couple of years).

Windows, and Linux were a no go. Well, Linux was a definite no-go, and Windows wasn’t preferred. That left me with…. Apple OSX. The OS that comes with the Apple hardware.
I did some extensive researching on the subject, and concluded that a 15″ PowerBook G4 was best suitable for me (the cheapest 15″ available). Mostly because of the (wide)screen / resolution. The iBooks had a smaller screen and resolution, and I NEED my space on the desktop.

Next came the funding… The 15″ PB didn’t go for free (around 2000 euro's at the end of 2004). Luckily, we had a trip planned to New York at X-mas in 2004. Secondly the dollar was extremely cheap at that time ($1.38 for 1 euro). Another nice part was the sales tax. Here in Holland it’s 19%. In New York it was around 8%. All these things combined left an extreme low-priced PB (saved me about 500 euro’s).

I bought the PowerBook at the Apple store in SoHo, New York. When we came back to the hotel, I opened the box and booted the laptop. Note, this was my first time ever on OSX. After the initial setup-wizard (which took about half an hour) I had it running, and to my surprise the hotel (or a neighbor) had ‘free’ WiFi. In less than an hour I was mailing, playing with iPhoto etc. Everything was intuitive. Not bad for a (former) Windows junky.
The only thing which bothered me was the lack of a “right-mouse-button”. That took some time getting used to. Apart from that, Steve Jobs had me convinced (within 4 hours).

During the following year I began to use the PB more and more, and began shifting from Windows to OSX. The only downside was that I was a fanatic gamer at the time (Battlefield 2, Counterstrike:Source etc.) and those games won’t run on OSX, so I couldn’t replace my PC (yet). Furthermore, I have a server at home which runs various services. Some of those are can’t run on OSX, so my server (Windows platform) was also there to stay. During the same period I registered switched2mac.com.

During the first year and a half I used my PB very much (I also upgraded my iPod 3G to a newer iPod Photo 4G). Than came the Intel CPU.

I needed (well… wanted is a better word for it) a new Apple laptop based on the Intel chip, so as soon as the MacBook Pro was released, I placed my order, and sold my “old” PowerBook to a new switcher.

Over the last 3 years, I grew very fond of the Apple stuff. Yes, it’s a bit more expensive, but you get so much back for it. For (almost) every Windows application is a good (or even better) substitute. There are no viruses or spyware for OSX, so that saves money (and time on re-installing the OS). Furthermore, lots of PC applications are available on OSX (Microsoft Office, Adobe Software etc.).

In the mean time, I banned Windows in private life. I still use Microsoft Office (for the Mac), but their Operating Systems are gone. Unfortunately, my laptop from work still runs Windows.....