O'Reilly editor ponders the future of the Mac

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O'Reilly Network Managing Editor Derrick Story is soliciting feedback from the Mac community about what he calls The New Mac User. The O'Reilly Network is the online arm of O'Reilly & Associates, the well-known publisher of technical documentation. The Network publishes a wide range of online columns and feature articles for the technically minded Mac user and developer.

Story said that he and his colleagues have seen a lot more Apple laptops at what he defines as "truly geeky events," like this past summer's Open Source Convention in San Diego, CA., or the P2P conference, which took place in Washington, D.C. a few weeks ago. A healthy percentage of the attendees of these shows were not just using PowerBooks and iBooks, but they were also running Mac OS X.

Story noted that at a recent Mac user group meeting attended by Apple Vice President Phil Schiller, a show of hands indicated that about 25 to 30 percent of the room was using the new OS, which Story considered "a much lower percentage" than what he's seen elsewhere.

What's holding Mac diehards back? Story pointed out that many of the Mac faithful have made a heavy investment in products that don't yet work natively in Mac OS X -- Adobe Photoshop, for example.

Story wondered if this could lead to the creation of two distinct categories of Mac users, or if this split will eventually reunite. He's also curious to find out if readers think that this new interest in the platform will lead to increased market share. If you have an opinion you'd like to share, make sure to read Story's article and then e-mail him your thoughts. Story promises to write a follow-up article if there's enough interest.

This story, "O'Reilly editor ponders the future of the Mac" was originally published by PCWorld.

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