I want to buy a MacBook Pro laptop.
Anyone who knows me will probably be taken aback by that sentence. I’m a Windows user and have been since 1995. But don’t mistake my adherence as advocacy.
When it comes to tools, I use what’s available. Hopefully, it’s the right tool designed for the job. You wouldn’t want to use a Philips screwdriver for something that needs a Thomas wrench, but if scissors aren’t available, a fingernail might do the trick.
One morning, I tweeted a complaint about iTunes on Windows, to which a friend of mine replied on Facebook with a question: “Why are you still using a PC?” I have standard answer to that question: I’m not in the income bracket for Apple products.
Yes, I’ve saddle myself with the Windows platform out of economics, not out of brand loyalty or platform advocacy. No, I don’t love Windows, and right now, I’m going through installation hell, having moved from Windows 7 32-bit to 64-bit. I didn’t work extensively with Apple computers till I got a web software engineering job at a Mac shop in 2010.
Till then, the last OS with which I worked on a Mac was System 7. Uh-huh. The late ’90s right around the time Steve Jobs came back into the fold. And boy, did those machines really suck. Back then, I was baffled by the Apple fan boys who insisted on the supremacy of the Mac operating system when it seemed neither Windows nor Mac worked very well. I remember Macs running System 7 crashing as much, if not more, than Windows 98.
A decade later, my previous perceptions were wiped away by the stability and ease of MacOS X, and I began to understand the accolades heaped on Apple. I have to admit — I was impressed. Impressed enough to decide that yes, I would welcome a Mac in home.
But I’m not so enamored that I would completely remake my technology stack to be exclusive to Apple. Not at this point. (That might change if/when I actually do get a Mac through the door. Price has always been a barrier of entry for me with Apple.)
In the 18 months I was working on a Mac in the office and Windows at home, I didn’t feel too much of a cognitive dissonance. Actually, working on a Mac convinced me to upgrade to Windows 7, and I found the transition from Windows XP to Windows 7 a lot easier because of it.
The truth is, I’m a mercenary when it comes to my tools. Could I make better music on a Mac than a PC? It might be easier, but I think the songs would sound the same given my level of skill with audio engineering. What about my work on the web? Most of the software I use to build websites are cross-platform, and I found no huge differences between user experiences.
In other words, it’s not the tool, it’s the person who’s using it. Yes, something could be said about tools getting in the way of the person using them — as Windows tends to do when it breaks down — but when they work, I’m usually too concentrated on the task at hand to notice the system running them. Which is how it should be.
Except when it comes to the COMMAND and CONTROL keys. Switching between those keystrokes is just messed up.