Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Times, They Are A'Changin'

I used to read PC Magazine (PCMag) regularly, even after I started using a Mac (in 1996) as my primary computer. If I recall correctly, I started with PCMag Vol. 1 No. 3 (and I've kept my Vol. 1 No. 1 issue of PC World magazine). PCMag was one of my main sources of information about personal computing, along with Byte, Macworld, and MacUser. This was all well before the web was invented — no Slashdot, no Ars Technica, no Digg, no Gizmodo, no Engadget. PCMag occasionally ran articles about Macs, just so their readers would know about that other computer. The overall tone of the articles tended to be dismissive. My, my, how times have changed. Now, MacOS X 10.5 Leopard is a PCMag Editor's Choice. Edward Mendelson writes:
Leopard again raises the question of whether to switch from Windows to a Mac. I've found Vista to be a major disappointment that tends to look worse the more I use it. I still use Windows XP for getting serious work done in long, complicated documents. But OS X is easier to manage and maintain and I vastly prefer OS X to Windows for Web-browsing, mail, and especially for any task that involves graphics, music, or video. Leopard performs all such tasks even better than previous versions did—and Leopard is the only OS on the planet that works effortlessly and intuitively in today's world of networked computers and peripherals. Leopard is far from perfect, but it's better than any alternative, and it's getting harder and harder to find good reasons to use anything else.
So, just in case it isn't crystal clear — a Mac is, or should be, the No. 1 choice of anyone who's buying a new personal computer for multimedia use. And nowadays, that's almost everyone whose budget allows for more than a bare-bones $199 Linux desktop PC or an Asus Eee.
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