We Have Officially Switched

Angela and I got a new iMac a cou­ple of weeks ago for the home office. First of all, I have to admit we feel a lit­tle dumb buy­ing one in light of recent events which are going to suck up all our mon­ey and time before too long. How­ev­er, we real­ly need­ed to get a new PC for the house as well as sim­pli­fy our home office (the fact that I’m about to sell three old com­put­ers on eBay should indi­cate how clunked up the office was). To that end, doing this now rather than this time next year made more sense, and that old com­put­er did­n’t have anoth­er year in it at the pace we were using it (although it will make a great PC for someone).

Unbox­ing our new iMac did­n’t take long: there’s only one cord and three parts (mon­i­tor, key­board, and mouse).

Speak­ing of sell­ing old com­put­ers, I just began run­ning DBAN on my old Dell desk­top. It’s a weird feel­ing for me putting that disc in the dri­ve, know­ing full well the dev­as­ta­tion I’m about to wreak on the hard disk. A bit like tak­ing Lenny out back to show him the “rab­bits.” Any­way, I’ve tak­en my time get­ting every­thing off of that machine and backed-up on our NAS, as well as keep­ing work­ing copies of most stuff on the new Mac. By the way, get­ting e‑mail out of Out­look and onto a mac has to be the most mis­er­able thing to do when “switch­ing.” I spent more time doing that than any oth­er task, and I had two 250 GB dri­ves near­ly full on that machine (I also had a lot of e‑mail, dat­ing back to around 1999).

Any­way, I’ve got Par­al­lels Beta 3 run­ning on the new iMac and that is an awe­some pro­gram. I had installed the old ver­sion I bought and was­n’t too impressed with it run­ning Ubun­tu 6, but after upgrad­ing to the most recent ver­sion I’m com­plete­ly blown away. In full screen mode, it is exact­ly as if you’re run­ning the OS native (although I’ve yet to be able to get it to take advan­tage of bet­ter than 1024x768 screen res­o­lu­tion). I’ve only run Lin­ux so far, but I’ve ordered OEM copies of both Win­dows XP and Vista and I hope to have those installed next month. I’ve heard real­ly good things about it run­ning XP, and quite frankly even though it’s vir­tu­al­iza­tion, it could­n’t be any slow­er than my 3 Ghz P4 had got­ten. Vista is prob­a­bly going to be less-than-stel­lar in Par­al­lels, and I don’t expect a lot of the flashy GUI effects to work. How­ev­er, it will give me the oppor­tu­ni­ty to keep on top of the Win­dows envi­ron­ment for a few more years. It’s pret­ty excit­ing to have four OS’s on one very sleek and ele­gant box. For such large screen, I sud­den­ly have loads more desk space and our tiny office seems just a bit bigger.

port­ing all my old e‑mail is about to make me pull my hair out and trans­fer­ring over 18,000 pho­tos into iPho­to took hours

I’ve been using Pho­to­shop CS3 Beta for the past week on the iMac­Thanks, Trey and Hen­ry for help­ing me use the Beta for more than the ini­tial two-day tri­al. and I have to say, I’m real­ly impressed. First of all, it’s final­ly in Uni­ver­sal Bina­ry so it will run native­ly on the Intel proces­sor. That means it’s insane­ly fast for such a large piece of soft­ware. Pho­to­shop now loads as fast as iPho­to (prob­a­bly faster, con­sid­er­ing my iPho­to library is around 19,350 images). Fea­ture-wise, I’m not exact­ly a pow­er-user, so I don’t notice many dif­fer­ences between the pre­vi­ous CS2 ver­sion and this Beta, though I’m sure that many exist. Also, I was using CS2 on a PC and now I’m on a Mac and I don’t know how sim­i­lar the ver­sions on those two plat­forms were to begin with. Either way, I’m very impressed with the speed of CS3 on this machine. It just feels very light­weight, even though it’s a huge piece of software.

I’ve also been just get­ting used to the dif­fer­ences of being in OS X ver­sus XP. The dif­fer­ences come in both large and small. Large would be the obvi­ous items where as the small were things I nev­er much thought about, such as the dif­fer­ent behav­ior of the home and end keys, which I use often. This, despite the fact that my wife has been using a mac for a year-and-a-half now. How­ev­er, I’ve not run into any huge prob­lems that I could­n’t find solu­tions to yet. For­tu­nate­ly, if when that does hap­pen, a num­ber of my friends and fam­i­ly are pow­er Mac users and I can hope­ful­ly get help from them you (you do read this stuff, don’t you guys?).

I sup­pose this is sort of full cir­cle. Like every oth­er thir­ty-some­thing, the first com­put­er I ever used was an Apple II (Apple ][, what­ev­er). My par­ents had one of the first Mac­in­tosh’s (back when they were called Mac­in­tosh and not just Mac), which like my iMac was a PC-in-a-monitor.

Every­thing old is new again.


  1. Con­grats on the new ‘put­er. Now you just need to install Skype so we can discuss.

  2. Well, one thing that came up in yes­ter­day evening’s Skype call with Jason J was the bright­ness of the screen. In short, the 24″ screen is very bright. Like “I’m start­ing to get headaches” bright. There are dim­ming con­trols, but unfor­tu­nate­ly they pro­duce a faint buzzing sound (some Googling on this seems to indi­cate it’s a prob­lem with­out a good solu­tion and I don’t feel like part­ing with my new iMac for sev­er­al weeks for Apple to send me one that does the same thing).

    One point on the iMac: You’ll save mon­ey on buy­ing a desk lamp. Just open up a large win­dow with a white background.

  3. Glad I could help and grats on the new beauty. 

    As for the headaches, I have a 23″ ACD and it’s bright­ness gave me pains at 1st as well. For me, the solu­tion was to adjust my work­space light­ing as I found that the sharp con­trast from the bright­ness of the screen to the dark­ness of every­thing else was what was hurt­ing my eyes. A 20 watt halo­gen lamp behind the screen and a 40 watt shad­ed light (shad­ed so it does­n’t glare) behind me made things very com­fort­able again.

  4. I fol­lowed your foot­steps Cole­man, and this machine is an ‘Objet Trou­vé’ in the house; with CS3 suite installed, its like its on steroids.

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