So…I Bought an iMac [Part 2]

If you missed part one of this riveting tale of geek suspense, read it first.

I suspect I’m not alone in this statement: as my life has become more complex – especially since having two kids – I’ve come to value simplicity and things that just work more than ever. When I was younger and had the luxury of spending a whole day troubleshooting a tech problem, it was fun. I relished the thrill of conquering a challenge and learning new things along the way. Especially back when my full-time job was being a computer geek that had a broad variety of experiences with Windows hardware, digging into a problem and coming up with a solution worthy of publication was part of what I did, and who I was as a person. Since 2011, that hasn’t been my career any longer, so the appeal has lessened over time.

I still relish learning new things of course, but when I’m pressed for time, I’d rather solve it and move on instead of doing battle with obscure technology issues. I’ve long heard the mantra “Macs just work”, but I dismissed it as mostly hype. After all, my Windows PCs “just work” too…though if I’m being brutally honest, they only “just work” because I’m the one taking care of them and keeping them tuned and running smooth. Windows, for me, is a stable, fast platform with rarely an issue. But that’s only because I take extraordinary care to tune my machines like a Formula 1 race car and am careful about new apps and changes. Sitting down in front of most of my relative’s Windows PCs is a better indication of the average state of affairs for the platform. It’s rarely pretty. Continue reading So…I Bought an iMac [Part 2]

Why I Returned the ASUS UX305 and Re-Purchased a Dell XPS 13

This is one of those long-overdue posts that I’m spurred to crank out today because a commenter (rare as they are on my blog!) asked me a question a few others have asked: why, after raving about how great the Asus UX305 was, did I return it? And what did I purchase instead?

I used the ASUS UX305 for a full month, two weeks of which were in Mexico on vacation (where I took at lot of photos with my Nikon D750) and generally really liked it. Good battery life, nice design, not too heavy. I was a little grumpy about the clicking trackpad problem, because it speaks to weak quality control, but as long as the unit you get doesn’t have the problem, you’re good. The one thing that niggled at me though was the CPU: I use Lightroom very frequently on my laptop, and the UX305 struggled to keep up in some ways. Not all the time, and in general I’d say if you’ve got more patience than me, it wouldn’t be an issue. But since I keep my laptops for 2-3 years, I wanted to invest in something that would remain high-performance. I truly think the UX305 is a superb device though and recommend it highly, especially for the price. So what did I buy instead? Continue reading Why I Returned the ASUS UX305 and Re-Purchased a Dell XPS 13

Great Quote About Paychecks

“Your first paycheck, and every one after that, is what you save part of in order to prepare for life after your last paycheck.”

– Anonymous

An Apple Quote From A Long Time Ago

I was searching for an Apple-related video I did a long time ago, and came across this quote of mine that Gizmodo published over a decade ago:

“The most impressive thing to me about the iPod shuffle is the price point – $149 for 1 GB of flash storage is a lot of bang for the buck. The usual impressive Apple styling is there, but I’m dubious on the lack of a screen – what if you actually want to listen to a certain song? The Apple hype machine spit out some pretty text about how cool it is to be “random”, but I wonder how well that will work in real life…

Based on what I’ve seen so far, the Apple Mini is quite impressive. I’m blown away by how small it is – I was expecting some sort of Blade-sever-esque size, but the Apple Mini makes my Shuttle XPCs look like a full tower. The specs for it are absolutely pathetic (167 mhz bus speed? I can type faster than that), but people aren’t going to buy one because it will their fast, main computer. They’ll buy one as a second or even third computer, something to compliment what they already have, or to fit into a tight space. Hell, I’ve never owned a Mac (and frequently smack Apple around) and even I’m considering picking one of these up. The Apple OS has always intrigued me, but the price point always put the idea of getting one on the “When I get $2000 that I have nothing better to do with” shelf.”

– Jason Dunn, Executive Editor & Publisher, Digital Media Thoughts

It’s amusing to me that a decade ago I had the same conflicted feelings about Apple hardware, and now, ten years later, I’m finally taking action on my idle threat of picking one up. What can I say, it takes me a while to make a decision like this!

Also amusing to me is that a decade ago, I was being quoted between the likes of the Senior Editor of Playboy  and the Editor in Chief of Laptop Magazine. Now I’m an anonymous cog in the AT&T machine. 🙂

Photo courtesy of The Shrine of Apple.

So…I Bought an iMac [Part 1]

I bought an iMac. I can’t believe I just typed that.

For anyone that’s known me for any length of time, that statement will be shocking. I’m still in disbelief in myself. And this isn’t a “I’m going to dabble in OS X”, this is a “I spent $2800 on a 27″ 5K iMac with the 4Ghz Core i7 CPU, a 512 GB SSD, and 32 GB of after-market RAM and will dive in head-first to learning to use a Mac as well as I can use Windows”.

For some, who have watched my severe dislike – some might even say at times hate – of all things Apple slowly melt away over the past six years, this may have seemed inevitable. I’ve certainly had some interesting conversations on Facebook over the past few months as I’ve slowly come around to the idea of really going all in on OS X. But how did I get here? How did one of the most ardent anti-Apple and pro-Windows/Microsoft guys there was get to the point of making the leap? As they say, all journeys begin with a single step (or maybe it’s more akin to falling off a cliff). Continue reading So…I Bought an iMac [Part 1]