Finally moving out of the library, after being rearended getting to it last week, to purchasing my own computer and would like your input. Thanks in advance...
Get a mac, if you can. If you need windows, you can still get a mac and have both windows and OSX, which is very easy to use, and, imho, infinitely superior. Vista tries to look a lot like Mac OSX which is a sincere form of flattery.
If you mostly need to do web-based stuff, then it should not be any doubt that a mac would be best. If you can only afford a small one, you can always connect a full-size kb and monitor.
Whilst macs may appear more expensive, keep in mind the software you'll need to buy for a pc, ie antivirus etc, and having to pay people to fix it/clean it out. Much less likely on a mac (just run disk utility and repair permissions now and then) - you still probably should get antivirus, but more for the benefit of pc users who may get files from you.
If you need word et al, there's a version for mac of course, or there's OpenOffice for mac, which is new and improved. There's also the online Google office stuff you can use.
Construction-wise, mac laptops are very nice.
No doubt someone will disagree with me, but comparing windows vista which is almost certainly what you'll get on a new laptop now, and mac osx is a no-contest.
If you must get a pc get one with XP - it's possible but not quite so easy.
Linux is fine but there's not as much support and you need to be a little more self-reliant.
parent of 2 college kids. owner of pc and mac. 10+ computers so far. a macbook will run 1100. you can easily find a pc for 1/2 of that. but 800-950 is real easy to find also. any pc is certainly functional. is cheaper more prone to breakdown? i have not seen any evidence.
Macbook 2.4ghz. Macbook 2.0ghz if you can't afford the former, or even the "white" older-design Macbook (which lacks the iPhone-style multi-touch keypad). By far the easiest to use, most stable, and best supported.
If you must have a PC-type laptop, get a Lenovo Thinkpad R, T, or X-series. Strong, reliable, even better keyboard than the Apple, and I've always liked the Trackpoint mouse. Makes every other Windows laptop feel like a toy.
Joemn, I was referring to my experience as a tech support person, almost ALL internet connectivity issues we assisted people with were computer-related, rather than our service. Probably the most common issue was drivers running incorrectly or not at all.
Mac OS doesn't use drivers per se. If your mac loses touch with a device or can't pull an ip address, reboot.
A reboot would sometimes fix a pc, sometimes only temporarily, but a mac was usually fine after that.
Point of my mentioning later expense was people having to pay to have viruses spyware et al removed, macs have almost no issues like that. I always advise mac owners to have antivirus, mostly so if they receive a pc virus, that will not affect their computer, they may inadvertently spread it to someone with a pc.
Don't be fooled by those microsoft ads where they basically bribe people at a store to buy a pc, one person says the mac "Only has two gigs of ram" - whilst more is always better, OSX.5 only needs 512meg, and Final cut only requires 1 gig. Vista, on the other hand needs at least a gig for the operating system alone, and many of the issues people have experience have been mitigated somewhat by more ram.
So you're comparing apples to oranges.
I use both systems and consider myself an advanced user. I prefer using a mac. Nicer interface, and more original. Windows vista is a poor copy of mac OSX.
Vista isn't even a poor copy of a Mac OSX operationally. It is a bloated poor OS, which is undoubtedly why Microsoft will be releasing a new OS later this year. That is one heckuva short time for an OS's existence by Microsoft.
I agree with pbj999 100% on the Mac. After years of using MS products both at home and at work, I got sick of being the "system administrator" at home and spending a good part of Saturday morning trying to straighten out the mess that Windows had gotten into. Have had an iMac for almost a year now and I will never go back. Is the Mac perfect? No. But it's a whole lot better/more forgiving/robust than the Windows machines. And I just cannot give any more money to MS, who perpetuated vulnerabilities in Windows for years. I don't even run Windows on my Mac, I prefer to go all the way with the products that are designed to work seamlessly with one another. I have an iPod (one reason I switched to Mac in the first place), and it's just a pleasure to use with the iMac and iTunes. No, I don't work for Apple. Get a Mac, be happy.
you like libraries, well research laptops on ebay..find the cheapest laptop thats say 5 years old and doesnt run vista....and works...shouldnt be to hard....you wont be dissappointed or out some 800 to 1000 dollars either...sould be able to pick one up around 400 dollars...
I agree, get a MAC. Lots of my friends have them vithout hardly any problems. I have 5 year old custom ASUS w/Windows pro and I really like it but it was expensive and not worth all the money.(3300 dollars)! I "cooked" the HD the first year running it almost 24/7. I was told it is not CD player or TV. It sat on my bed during night. After it was fixed I had one crash. Now so far it's O.K. But my next one will be MAC.
My BF got small 5 year old Toshiba for 2nd computer for 100 bucks to play chess in bed at night and it is still running too!
If you buy new one ,get all the extended warranty you can. It paid off for me.