Mac vs. PC

Exactly why does the Macintosh beats the pants off Wintel? We all know it’s true but sometimes we forget all the reasons to confuse Windows users with. This is the average Mac lovers guide to what you should tell your friends who think they know it all.

Menagerie of Macs

1. Speed

Yes it’s true. We’re faster, way faster. The PowerPC processor is cool, efficient, and blazing fast. It runs at fairly low temperatures, compare that to Intel. It’s blazing alright, but not fast, just hot. Also PowerPC takes advantage of RISC architecture. It’s far more efficient than CISC processors. This is why a 400 MHz Intel workstation chugs along at about half the speed of a 233 MHz iMac. That’s according to BYTEmark Integer numbers.

You might be told that these numbers are less than accurate. Fine, here’s a real world example. If you were to check out your MacWarehouse catalogue, you’ll see that when you put a 266 MHz Mac up against a Pentium II based system running a 266 MHz chip, the Mac runs Adobe Photoshop actions 30% faster. Yippie, we’re well on our way.

2. Ease of Use

What can I say but – the Mac is easier. We don’t have to worry about files like AUTOEXEC.BAT or CONFIG.SYS. We’re taken to the Finder automatically. What about mounting disks? Well, pop it in, any disk, and the image appears right there on your desktop. Not in a directory in ‘My Computer’ called a:.

How about names? Well, I call my Mac Spam. I never have to worry about my C: drive getting screwed up because it has the wrong letter name. Also if you change just about anything on a PC, you risk crashing the whole system. Something as simple as changing the colour depth on your monitor can bring up three or four warnings about how your computer might get blown to kingdom come if you continue. On your Mac, just click.

I don’t think it gets any better than the in store demos on the iMac. A forty-year-old man on a PC against a ten-year-old boy and his dog on an iMac. The kid got on the internet in about 8 minutes. It took the Norton’s Utilities look-a-like around 45. Sound easy? It is.

3. We Make More Money and We Get More Done

Isn’t his what is all comes down to? Efficiency and money. In a study conducted by Mr. Arthur D. Little, it was found that Mac users completed a suite of tasks in 44% less time than PC users, they were also 50% more likely to complete the tasks correctly. The suite consisted of tasks such as editing documents, printing, and managing files, as well as 21 other tasks.

Money money money money money! Creative professionals make more money using Macs than PCs. A 1997 study found that Mac users make $26 441 more annual revenue and $14 488 more net profit. Also, the same study found that Power Macintoshes make their owners 7.14 times the cost of the computer while NT machines earn just over twice their cost.

4. The Year 2000 Bug

Most know it but some don’t, so here we go. The Macintosh will never have a Y2K compatibility bug. As a matter of fact, it never did. Current system software will continue to serve us loyal users until the year 29,940. Many PCs may be Y2K compatible but not compliant. It seems technical, but there is a major difference. Just because a user can manually skip the clock over to 2000 doesn’t mean it will boot up again. Many people aren’t sure how the year 2000 will affect even the most basic things like street lights.

5. Mac OS X Is Coming

I’m waiting, counting the days. It should be out in July-August (at least that’s the plan). It is powerful. This wonderful OS combines the best features of Rhapsody and our beloved Mac OS. Under OS X (Ten) you will have the protected memory and preemptive multitasking of Rhapsody while still keeping the great features of OS 8.

You will still be able to run your OS 8 programs under an environment called Blue Box (could this refer to Steve Job’s antics in the ’70s?). However, with some minor tweaking (about 10% of the code) applications will be able to take advantage of OS X’s greatest achievements. All these app’s will run under an environment called Carbon, the base of all life on earth.

This OS will leave skid marks on your desktop. Programmers have eliminated about 2000 API’s (application programming interfaces) that are no longer needed, they slowed down the system. The OS will also be PowerPC native. There won’t be any 68K code for the system to sift through, even faster. So, unfortunately the little LC that sits on my desktop will be out of luck, but the PowerMac 6100 will do just fine.

This should hold out your PC enemies, er, friends until next month when Mac vs. PC will be back with things that you can refute if your Windows counterparts want to pick a fight. By the way, I did say 6100 in the last paragraph. If anyone has anything, shall be say, less sluggish, that they don’t need, I’d appreciate it.

Of course we’re better, but they don’t know that. Try dropping some subtle hints around school and work. You’ll get them eventually. I’ve already converted one user, and I’m working on number 2. Try picking up your November issue of MacAddict. Yep, it’s me.

Brad “the MacAddict” Harrison

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