Time To Buy A Mac

Yesterday’s announcement from Apple was probably the most blogged about press release in history. As you have probably already heard, you can now easily run Windows on a Mac.

This of course if not the first time this has happened. True cross-platform integration has been the holly grail of Mac users for some time. Even though we think Windows sucks, we sometimes need to lean on the flawed OS to run some software.

I have been pretty vocal about my feelings on Mac vs. Windows, and here is what I tell people.

Take a look at what software you run now. Minus out anything that doesn’t really work anyway. Then take a look and see if that software runs on Mac, or there is a Mac alternative.

Here is what I see most people running.

1. Office (Word, Outlook, Powerpoint, Excel) – Microsoft make Office for the Mac, and most people agree that it’s actually better than the Windows version.
2. Browser – No one on any OS should be using Internet Explorer. It’s just not a good idea. Firefox is great, and cross-platform. And it has some great extensions.
3. AIM – If you like getting a ton of ads at start-up, and you can’t live without the constant update demands from AOL, then AIM is for you. But if you want something that lets you have access to the AIM subscribers, and something that works perfect for chat/audio/video, iChat kicks everyones ass.

There has only been one market that Mac has been left out in the cold on; gamers. Computer games is a huge market. And it’s also dominated by Microsoft. Most game makers do not find the time to port their games to the Mac because of the small market share. Big titles like WoW, and Doom of course get there, but rarely at the same time. And VirtualPC is great for running Windows applications on the Mac, but VPC doesn’t access the video card, so games have always been out of the question. But now with Boot Camp, you can just boot up in Windows when you want, and run any game out there at the top quality the game provides.

Today a company, Parallels announced their OS integration of WIndows and OS X. Unlike Boot Camp, you do not have to re-boot your computer into the other OS. Instead you just run the OS like an application. And unlike VirutalPC, this is not an emulator, so you have better graphic and video ability.

So, you can run Office, your browser, email, iChat, iTunes, and anything else you may use on a daily basis. Plus, you can play every game you want, at great levels of quality. There is very little left you can’t do on a Mac. Actually, quite the contrary.

Some of my favorite apps are now Mac only. This posting is being written on MarsEdit, which plus into NetNewsWire. These are blogging applications that run only on the Mac, and are the best apps for reading RSS and creating a blog. I also use my Backpack widget for my 37 Signals Backpack application. This is a great little tool for staying organized. And of course there is the whole issue of iTune and the iPod, which most people agree at the most important part of owning a computer these days.

There is simply no excuse to not own a Mac. And if you are complaining about the price, realize that you really do get what you pay for. You can pick up a Mac Mini for around $500. That is better than just about any Windows machine.

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