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ECT News Community   »   MacNewsWorld Talkback   »   Re: But There's No Software for the Macintosh, Right?



Re: But There's No Software for the Macintosh, Right?
Posted by: Paul Murphy 2004-12-26 07:49:44
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About two months ago, I looked at the cost of the Macintosh relative to Dell PCs and discovered that not only are Macs cheaper than PCs once you upgrade the PCs to rough comparability, but the PC line is narrower than Apple's, with Dell offering nothing to compare to the 17-inch Apple powerbook, the X-serve/RAID combination, or Apple's cinema displays. What seems to happen on pricing is that Apple's inclusion of multimedia capabilities generally missing from the PC skews its price advantage toward the high end.


Re: But There's No Software for the Macintosh, Right?
Posted by: polkw 2004-12-27 10:16:42 In reply to: Paul Murphy
Only question I've ever had is why Apple doesn't offer a budget machine. Many folks can't afford even the cheapest Emac. Apple will be labelled "expensive" when many can't buy them

Re: But There's No Software for the Macintosh, Right?
Posted by: jbelkin 2004-12-27 00:41:57 In reply to: Paul Murphy
An excellent follow-up but it takes time for the mindset to be changed - journalists are still pretty quick on the draw to casually say "PC's are cheaper than Macs," without doing any research or analysis - mostly citing $499 PC's are evidence though as you & others have rightly pointed out, a longer than 10-second look into them realizes just how flawed they are - I saw one with a 10 GB HDD and no DVD drive and no CD burner. Did they pry those off some 1994 machine?
And you are absolutely right about the software. There are also two add'l odd things about Windows software. First, the fact that PC users will accept anything - I have seen a lot of very specialized software (smog service centers or security cam software or dentist office mgmt software) that essentially look like Excel macros and PC users just accept that that the tab feature doesn't work correctly or that the text box accepts only 70 characters and nothing more ... not to mention with interfaces that look like they they were designed by someone on a 486 machine and never updated. But if you run a dentist office, I'll bet there are 50 to choose from $49.99 to $20,000 - never mind that they are all ugly, kludgy and insist on printing a blank page before the rest of the pages come out - hey, that's just the way things are. And on top of that, EVERY app operated/operates differently with menus in completely different places.
And the other I toally agree with - there are/were lots of PC software choices but it seems in most cases, most people were using 1 of 3 titles anyway but it's the other 10% who manage/insisted on using the other 80 choices that gave the illusion of depth when PC software is a mile wide but 2" deep. You just had to look at Mp3 encoding software - most users were using WinAmp but Pc users love the illusion of choice so there were literally hundreds of choices. Never mind that they were all essentially the same but PC users also loved the illusion only they are smart enough to be using one from an aucostic professor from Estonia and damn it if there 92kpbs encoded thrash metal song sounded way, way better than WinAmp and of course, anything on the Mac side. On the mac side, we had like 3 choices (before itunes) and frankly, with SoundJam (the basis of itunes) or Audion, what more could any music lover need? Of course, the WinAmp users also loved the fact they could 'skin' their player and not to generalize but if professional PC software companies cannot design interfaces and look/feel worth a damn, the average PC users designed some of the ugliest skins this side of communist architects and not just a handful but thousands upon thousands of ugly skins (usually followed with a warning that it might work with OFFICE or obscure software like that). And it continues today - you just have to look at the themes offered on the PC side for Firefox, the tradition of the blind leading the concussed continues.

Re: But There's No Software for the Macintosh, Right?
Posted by: waffledonkey 2004-12-30 09:55:12 In reply to: jbelkin
A couple of thoughts. I, as a multi-platform user, was discouraged to read Paul say, in response to the lack of games on the apple platform:
"Those developers, for example, who focused on replacing the player's imagination or intelligence with interactive graphics simply found no market among Mac buyers -- most of whom are older and/or better educated than the people to whom those products sell."
That's not entirely accurate. I work in the gaming industry and apple, while a good platform, doesn't have the saturation that PCs have. Like most things, it's about ROI and increasing shareholder value. Even if the statement was correct that mac owners are in some way a higher class of person and wouldn't succumb to playing video games for entertainment, don't you have kids?
Finally, jbelkin's comments are largely generalized, inflammatory drivel and really underscore the feelings, among my colleagues, that apple users are elitist [explicative removed].
"pc users will accept anything" is a broad generalization and is far from accurate.
"PC users just accept that that the tab feature doesn't work correctly or that the text box accepts only 70 characters and nothing more" I as a pc user would not accept that.
"if you run a dentist office, I'll bet there are 50 to choose from $49.99 to $20,000 - never mind that they are all ugly, kludgy and insist on printing a blank page before the rest of the pages come out". I suppose he's evaluated every piece of dentist software and can attest that they're all kludgy and don't print properly.
Finally, about skinning, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I agree that many skins, to me, seem poorly done and the best skin for winamp, for me, is the default one. That's not the case for everyone. Personally I hate the look and feel of itunes...
In short the article was good, didn't feed into pre-existing biases and made every attempt to remain impartial while illuminating common misconceptions. Then jbelkin came along, added his two cents, and ruined it for me.
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