You are currently browsing the monthly archive for April 2008.

  1. Vista sucks.
  2. OS X rocks.
  3. Web Apps.
  4. Mac Bling.
  5. Mac at Last Gen PC Price.
  6. Bootcamp parachute.

Points 1 & 2 are self-explanatory.

3. Web Apps

People are no longer afraid of not being able to run their Windows apps because… nearly everything is becoming a web application. The only thing you need to run a web app is a web browser, which is free and already installed.

Most devastating to Microsoft’s crumbling empire was/is GMail. Email is the most used Internet service. Everyone gets email (even possibly the AOLers).

GMail virtually eliminated spam. And now, everyone has a GMail address.

GMail, is a web app.

Web App = Operating System Agnostic. Bye-bye chains of Windows servitude.

4. Bling

People like to show off their richesse. Ladies will buy a thousand dollar Louis Vuitton handbag to hold a set of house keys. Why not a sleek sexy Macbook Pro to hold their SSH keys?

5. Price… not so bad

Macs are more expensive than a similarly equipped PC. Regardless, with a Mac you’re getting more style, functional form, sexiness, and envious looks from the Dell drones. Mac’s are simply “badass”. Walk into any Apple flagship store and everything will make sense.

Now, consider the purchase price a current Mac. Most people buy a new computer every 3 to 5 years. The price of their last computer was likely similar or even more expensive than the current Mac / Macbook they’re eyeing. Perhaps this is why Mac sales can grow, even in a recessionary economy.

6. Bootcamp

The idea of plunging into uncharted waters of Mac-land is a scary prospect to the long-term PC crowd, myself included. Knowing that if you really needed to, you could jump back into Windows with a quick reboot, or through VMWare Fusion while still running OS X… is the golden parachute.

Bootcamp eliminated the worry of becoming the prodigal son and returning to the Windows scene, tail between legs.

Even if the newly converted enlightened never touch bootcamp, simply having it as an option, handholds a lot of people through the Windows to OS X transition and sells a lot of Macs.

Brilliant marketing.

Have I forgotten anything? Have your say by leaving a comment.

This will be painfully obvious to the old school Mac crew, but having been a recent convert from twenty years of PC’ing, I recently discovered how cool it is to play movies and videos from my Macbook Pro.  It’s like having a digital entertainment suite in your computer, complete with remote control that wows the crowd.

Front Row

Pressing Apple key + Escape key will fade out your screen to black and then Front Row will show up with selections such as Movies, which lists all video files in your Movies folder within Finder. If you’ve got your remote handy you can navigate this menu using the + and – buttons to go up and down the list, using Play/Pause to make a menu item selection. To go back or Up a menu selection you can either press the Escape key on the keyboard or the circular small Menu button on the remote.

If you haven’t already, consider install a DivX decoder and Perian so that you get great video format playback capabilities on your Mac.  Otherwise you may run into the situation where videos you’ve saved on your Mac play without sound and possibly without video either.

After having returned my original Macbook Pro battery (made by Sony) and receiving my new SMP made lithium-polymer battery unit, my “at rest” macbook pro battery life reads 5 hours 25 minutes upon fresh unplugging.

How long does your new Macbook Pro battery last?

If you’ve noticed that your Macbook or Macbook Pro purchased in 2006 or 2007 is losing its battery life at an alarming rate, you’re not alone. Apple has had a very large batch of Sony lithium-ion polymer batteries for their laptops that are losing their maximum charge capacity very quickly.

System Profiler - Power

If you’ve noticed that your 4 hour battery life dropping to just over 2 hours recently, check your System Profiler for some information about your laptop battery power system.

System Profile can be found in Finder => Applications => Utilities => System Profiler.

Once you have System Profiler open, find Power underneath Hardware. Click on that item and on the right side of the window, scroll down until you find the Battery Information heading.

The three values we’re interested in are Full charge capacity (mAh), Cycle count, and Battery health.

A normal reading for Full charge capacity is about 5200-5400 mAh (milliamp hours). That translates into just over 4 hours battery life. Cycle count is how many times the battery has been used to capacity and recharged. Battery health is a word describing overall life expectancy and condition of the battery.

Remember that Apple has published on its Apple Support site that their laptop batteries are designed to hold 80% of its original charge capacity after 300 cycles (see the footnotes).

Doing the math, that means the Full charge capacity should be around 4160 to 4320 mAh after 300 cycles. If your Macbook battery is failing, like mine, it should read less than 3250 mAh, with a Health of “Fair” after far less than 300 cycles.

But, don’t despair. With that juicy price paid for the best laptop available on the market comes pretty good customer service. Bring your Macbook into an authorized service center, an Apple flagship store, or call up Apple support hotline and explain the situation. Also note that there are several support forum threads on Apple.com about users describing the same situation and what Apple has done for them:

http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1227431&tstart=0

http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?threadID=1300374&tstart=0

For Macbook users experience battery life problems as described above the warranty coverage is being extended to two years, so even if your Macbook is out of warranty, your battery may still be in warranty.

I currently have a battery being sent to me and we’ll see how things turn out.

Good luck.