Being a geek I get asked a fair amount of tech questions. Some are answered by a simple cntrl-Z others a bit more complicated. Recently, I’ve been asked a bunch of Mac questions.
Over the last six months, 5 individuals have told me that they are interested in buying a Mac and they have a few questions. Thanks to Apple’s current TV ads I believe that most of you know that a Mac is a computer from Apple that runs the Macintosh operation system. Not to be confused with a PC which runs the Windows Operating System.
Allow me to digress.
Mac VS. PC?
Apple started this campaign to differentiate itself in the marketing world from Windows computers. This is a good thing, but PC stands for personal computer. Mac’s are PCs. I think this is silly.
Here is a little Mac Q & A:
Where is the best place to buy a Mac?
Apple controls the pricing on Macs so a new Mac will cost you about the same no matter where you purchase. For hands-on shopping I recommend going to a an Apple Retail store and independent Mac Store such as themacstore.com.
If you know what you are looking for you can get some good deals from MacMall.com. I know I told you that the prices are pretty much locked. This is true, but MacMall.com offers a variety of bundles. A bundle might be a free printer, some extra ram and or free software such as Parallels Desktop.
Parallels Desktop allows you to run Microsoft Windows while running the Mac OS. VMWare and Sun Microsystems also after software to run Windows on a Mac. Something that I admit is helpful and wrong all at the same time.
How can I save some Money?
There are a quite a few options to save some dough when buying a new Mac. Open Box or previous model. Many times you can buy and Open Box model, this means the box was opened the computer is like new and you still have the full warranty. You can often save $$$ on an open open.
Apple is perpetually make updates in improving their computers. If you don’t NEED the absolute latest model you can normally find last months model for a bit less money. This “previous version” (Apple.com has these in the clearance section of the site) computers can be found at most Apple Retailers including a local favorite; PowerMax: http://www.powermax.com
Note: Buying previous versions doesn’t always save you money. Apple recently made a significant update and price drop on the MacBooks (laptops). Had I not been a Mac Geek, one of my clients would have actually paid more for less last month when he purchased his first Mac (A beautiful MacBook). Both PowerMax and Apple.com sell used (refurbished computers)
Will it run Microsoft Office?
The answer is yes, Microsoft has a Mac version of their Office that many believe is better than that in the Windows world. And yes, you can open files sent from your Windows friends and they in turn can read your files. There are also alternative to Word and Excel. Apple has their own suite called iWork that can open and save to Word Docs and Excel.
Do Macs really not have viruses?
At one time I read that there were over 140,000 PC viruses and 1 Mac Virus. And the Mac Virus was just a proof of concept. Meaning some just wanted to see if was possible. Since that time there has been some new – about a handful of other Mac viruses. To the best of my knowledge Apple has addressed them all with free security updates. Macs are NOT immune to viruses, but due to the nature of the OS the are much less susceptible.
Does it work just like my PC?
No. That is why you are interested in getting a Mac. Yes, they both can do the same things. It is just easier and more fun on a Mac.
I know Macs are best for graphics, but what about for what I do?
That depends a lot on what it is you do. If you enjoying taking digital pictures, Apple’s iPhoto software is a great way to organize and share your shots. If you do a lot of PowerPoint Presentations, Apple has Keynote which makes beautiful presentations.
Mac or PC?
I say yes, get a Mac, it is a PC. But no, I don’t do Windows.
- Oscar remembers having an advanced copy of Windows 95 on his screaming fast Pentium 100Mhz. He though it was great, until his friend showed him what he could do on his old Mac. Oscar then dumped Windows and bought that Mac. He hasn’t looked back since.
Oscar Myre IV is the owner and creative director of omOriginals Design Studio in Longview, WA – professional web development and marketing solutions. #360-575-9839 or online omOriginals.com