Our shift from PC's to Macs is essentially completed - but not without significant turmoil. it is maintaining continuity that causes the most trouble - legacy software, years of files, ingrained habits. But here are the things we like.
- We added an extra computer (iMac) for Jan's kitchen desk, because with the built-in wireless network, tiny wireless keyboard, everything-in-the-monitor design she finally had room for it.
- The standard wireless connection between the two Macs was a snap to establish and files are easily shared (including music).
- The keyboards are cool, and for two-finger artists like me easier to use than the more ergonomic types for real keyboarders.
- iTunes loaded our old files from a USB hard drive without problem.
- The machines are fast, quiet, and gorgeous to look at.
- I used Bootcamp to install a Windows partition to run old software - very straightforward.
- I really don't miss all the wires. We installed an Airport Extreme to network our printer and Internet - fast as Ethernet.
- Quickbooks for Mac is lame compared to the windows version. At least the file transferred cleanly. I feel like I stepped back about 4 editions.
- While I may learn to use iWork, I bought Office Mac just to be comfortable with all my old files (Word, Excel, PPoint, etc.). This is where it got interesting. I bought an upgrade since I already owned several versions of Office. But, there is no credit for Windows versions [this is not terribly obvious when you read the eligibility specs] and my upgrade won't work. So I plunked down another $200 for a copy of Word just so I can upload Office Mac.
- Transferring all my old e-mail, calendar and contact info from Outlook was not easy. I downloaded O2M ($10) and mirable dictu it chugged away and converted several years of e-mails and addresses to files for Mail and iCal, etc. As you may know MS does not make Outlook files easy to find, either.
- Not only would my old printer not work with Leopard (Mac OS 10.5) - not many others will either. I found that out after carefully asking for help at Staples and then returning a new printer the next day. Not too many printer companies are rushing to develop new printer drivers for their printers, so be sure to check to see if yours works with Leopard. I eventually ordered a HP 2605dn after checking its compatibility.
- As far as I can discover you can't rename and alias (shortcut), so instead of helpful labels on my desktop for "Farm Books" or "IL Radar" you get the actual file name "96farm.qb2007 alias" for example. That's sad.
- The mouse takes some getting used to, but I've got a two-button version coming.
- Firefox for Mac is just enough different to slow me down, but I still prefer it to Safari.
- Oddly enough, I don't feel any cooler than I used to.
Sooo - I hope to be posting more frequently. Thanks for your patience.
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