I’m a switcher

I don’t know whether this is a record of any kind, but the last Apple computer I owned was an Apple ][+ in 1982. Here I am 26 years later, about to switch from my trusty ThinkPad to a MacBook Pro. This feels like a divorce – I love ThinkPads, have used them exclusively since 1999 – but my love of ThinkPads does not equate to a love of Windows.

Ultimately this switch comes as I’ve finally realized just how much time I spend grappling with Windows. Long reboots, inconsistent behavior resuming from standby, sluggish response times, I could go on.

Over the last two years, I’ve moved almost everything I do to the browser. I moved from Outlook to Gmail, from Word/Excel to Google Docs. Still, I ridiculed my co-workers. And I don’t mean teased, I mean ridiculed. I gave them endless amounts of shit for playing with a Mac. Serious computer users used ThinkPads.

When FeedBurner was acquired, we were given the choice: did we want a ThinkPad or a Mac. Like that was even a question! A ThinkPad, of course. (Making it my 10th ThinkPad in as many years.) But then a crazy thing dawned on me about a month ago: save a few apps that I used on my PC (TiVo Desktop, for instance), almost nothing that I use on a regular basis was PC-specific. After my office-mate switched, my defenses started crumbling.

The 11 minute reboot, increasingly sluggish resumes from standby, and overall slow system responsiveness convinced me that it was time to ditch Windows. (A few hours with Vista at the in-laws convinced me that I definitely didn’t want to stick with Windows any longer.) Yesterday I finally bit the bullet – and less than 24 hours, IT had a shiny new MacBook Pro waiting for me. It’s clear I have some learning to do – but already I can tell that this is a long-overdue switch. I will gladly put up with all the abuse that’s sure to follow from my co-workers who I’ve mercilessly teased over the years. Don, you have a standing invite to heap scorn in my direction… 😉

Now for some questions:

  • Why didn’t anyone tell me how pretty this OS is?
  • Am I the first to make the observation that the Mac just works? Because seriously, it just works.
  • Where’s the Registry on this thing? autoexec.bat?

  • It’s pretty here.

Consider this an open thread. What do you wish you knew when you switched? Any shortcuts? Which apps should I be installing? What cool stuff can I do with this OS that I couldn’t do on Windows?

Most importantly, if there’s a handy guide to how to show disdain for the poor, lost souls stuck on Windows, let me know. I promise, I’m a quick learner.