Macintosh expatriate Stewart Alsop once again finds himself with a Mac system. This time it’s a PowerBook G4. He just wrote about his experience in a Fortune.com article entitled
My Old Flame: The Macintosh.
Alsop admits writing off the Mac back in 1996, but said that with Jobs and company creating cool machines, he’s finally been drawn back into the fold. Why?
“There’s one simple reason: Unlike Windows, the Macintosh seems to work,” wrote Alsop.
Alsop noted that the PowerBook G4 was a joy to integrate into his workflow. His digital camera worked like a charm with the Titanium-clad laptop (something he still can’t get working on Windows 2000, he explained), and he installed an AirPort card and Thursby’s DAVE software, and now is able to communicate with his other Windows-based PCs wirelessly.
Alsop explained that he’s well aware of the deficiencies in Mac OS software availability (none of his five portfolio companies make Mac clients, for example). “But for pretty much every important productivity application — word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, e-mail, and so on — there’s some Macintosh equivalent that will suffice.”
The ease of use of a Mac contrasts sharply to Alsop’s experience with Windows PCs. “If your Windows experience is like mine, programs will fail or crash; the machine will start acting funny; tasks won’t get completed; you’ll wait around a lot hoping the machine will work after this reboot,” he explained. And Alsop has all but given up hope that Microsoft will make good on their promises to improve Windows with each progressive release.
“I’ve heard similar promises for years; now I just smile, nod my head, and wonder at the power of the Kool-Aid they serve in Redmond. I don’t believe these [Microsoft] execs,” wrote Alsop.
Alsop said that when he walked away from the Mac in 1996, it was with the hope that he wouldn’t spend all his time with hairy integration issues.
“Boy, was I wrong: It is as hard to maintain and integrate Windows computers as it is to integrate multiple kinds of computer systems,” Alsop said.