Having been a PC/Windows user since the early days of Windows 3.1, I had built a substantial investment not only in dollars but in time spent learning my way around the enormous collection of software I had. I did everything from email to word processing to web development (including graphics) to personal and business finances. I pondered switching to Mac for a very long time before finally taking the plunge. Yes today’s Mac, as they were 3 years ago, are based on Intel processors which means you can run Windows on the Apple hardware. Yet, one of my primary reasons for wanting to switch was because after using Macs at work for 5 years side by side with PCs I had seen with my own eyes how much more stable the Mac operating system is compared to Windows. By stable I mean there were few if any crashes which I was experiencing several times a day on my Windows XP laptop. So to switch to Mac hardware and then run Windows on it seemed like a gross waste of money, not to mention I wouldn’t be gaining any system stability or reducing my frustrations. So, the switch HAD to be complete.
A complete switch meant new software, more dollars and time spent, and oh… converting all of the accumulated data and files to the new software formats. This was a daunting prospect which caused me to drag my feet in finally taking the plunge. But the stars came into alignment, I decided I was ready to take on the challenge, and I got a great deal on a new Macbook Pro.
After the giddiness of having this shiny new toy wore down a bit, the first thing I did was to network the Mac and my old laptop and copy all of my data files. Of course some things like pictures, graphics and movie files are somewhat (though not all) platform independent and proved to be a snap. Basic text files, word processor documents (in certain formats), and web development code were mostly platform independent as well. This is easy! But then came the data in proprietary software. In some cases there was no Mac version of the software and i was going to have to figure that out. Email and finances were both a problem. Email was only a temporary problem and I’ll write about that later. To this day I have yet to find a financial application I like on the Mac, and so that is still an issue. This is not to say there aren’t financial applications for the Mac, in fact there are many. I simply haven’t found the one that works for me.
I wrote a few posts while I was in the midst of figuring out how to transform this Windows user to a Mac user. I haven’t touched it since, but will attempt to make up for that in the coming months. This may be better in the long run as time has allowed me to thoroughly test various software options on the Mac, from a Windows point of view.
Until next time…