You have to spend money to make money

I’ve bought a PowerBook. 1.25 GHz, 512 MB, 80 GB, 15-inch.
Plus the Adobe Creative Suite.

My excuse is that it’s mainly for work purposes (I’m spending the
next month working for Bango). And also because I’ve coveted one for
some time.

It’s luuuuvly. Some oddness, including flaky SMB connectivity
(bizarrely, the GUI way sometimes fails but mount_smbfs works fine)
and a required google to discover how to type # (it’s Alt-3: # isn’t
labelled on the keyboard or described in the doc). But on the whole
it does what it says on the tin.

There was a touch of America-is-the-world during installation. It
asked me to set the date, which defaulted to 1-1-1970 in good ol’ UNIX
fashion, but there was nothing to indicate which number was the day
and which the month. Since I’d already told it I was British, I
assumed day-month-year. Bzzt, wrong. Oh well. Smack hand Apple. (It
gets it right post-install.)

The most annoying thing I’ve found so far as a “Windows switcher”
is that, by default, Tab only moves between text boxes. You have to
select a checkbox (System Preferences, Keyboard & Mouse, Keyboard
Shortcuts) to make Tab notice other types of control. And rather than
a single Alt press, it’s Ctrl-F2 to give the menu bar the focus.

I’ve spent the weekend sorting out email, etc. Downloaded buckets
of software. I didn’t think I’d be installing all the developer stuff
within two days, but I’m using Fink for package management, and some
of the stuff I want (the Subversion client, for instance) is only
available as source right now (and, sadly, requires you to build the
whole of Apache and sundry other packages first). Still, it’s
exercising the CPU and disk; I heard the fan for the first time not
long ago.

I’ve discovered Fink to be a bit unstable if you want, er, unstable
packages (as Subversion is currently categorised). Fink managed to
install segfaulting tar and awk binaries while updating and rebuilding
itself, which was very clever I thought (I copied over the standard
Darwin binaries and crossed my fingers, and it seems to have worked).

I haven’t even run iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie or iDVD yet. I have,
however, got XEmacs working…

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3 Comments

Filed under Random

3 responses to “You have to spend money to make money

  1. Anonymous

    From a Windows laptop weenie

    I use XP home on my laptop. CPU is a Pentium M with a little higher clockspeed, and the HD is half the size, otherwise everything else is the same (or as good as). 5 hour battery life (yes really).

    Of course Linux is a joke on a laptop since it doesn’t even do hibernate (about 3 seconds under XP). [Actually Linux does do hibernate if you count two different half finished implementations as “do”]

    (Linux is even more of a joke if you try and do the dual display stuff built into my and your laptops).

    And the Windows version of Xemacs works fine. I also own Microsoft Virtual PC so I use that when I need a real copy of Linux running.

    I guess you are also going to find out what it is like being a second class “Linux” citizen (software only available as source, inexplicable core dumps, stupid code that thinks all the world is i386 etc).

    I couldn’t even tell you how to do the pound key on a US keyboard. I use the Bryony patented scrape and paste method normally! But I do way prefer the US keyboard over the UK one. Things like the {semi-,}colon and {single,double}-quotes are sensible.

    I suppose the one consolation you have is that there are almost no games for the Mac so you will have waste your productivity time on the Adobe crap. I get to waste mine on Rise of Nations :-)

  2. Anonymous

    Title

    You also left out the “wherein you covet my new toy” in the title of this story

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