Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 22nd May 2014 18:21 UTC, submitted by Shane
General Development

I was at the OpenStack Summit this week. The overwhelming majority of OpenStack deployments are Linux-based, yet the most popular laptop vendor (by a long way) at the conference was Apple. People are writing code with the intention of deploying it on Linux, but they're doing so under an entirely different OS.

But what's really interesting is the tools they're using to do so. When I looked over people's shoulders, I saw terminals and a web browser. They're not using Macs because their development tools require them, they're using Macs because of what else they get - an aesthetically pleasing OS, iTunes and what's easily the best trackpad hardware/driver combination on the market. These are people who work on the same laptop that they use at home. They'll use it when they're commuting, either for playing videos or for getting a head start so they can leave early. They use an Apple because they don't want to use different hardware for work and pleasure.

Apple's laptops are still the best PCs money can buy at the moment (despite their horribly outdated displays). It's no wonder Linux developers, too, favour them.

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Comments on Mac laptops
by Bobthearch on Fri 23rd May 2014 05:39 UTC
Bobthearch
Member since:
2006-01-27

I'm not a developer, but here are my brief review comments on the Apple MacBooks and I've used at work:

One needs a new battery. Can't just snap the old one out and a new one in, have to take apart the case. So no carrying an extra battery for a quick spare. Dumb design.

The screens are beautiful, but I hate the keyboards. Miserably poor tactile feedback. I don't have one handy at the moment to check, but their keyboards feel cramped too, smaller than Dell Latitude or Lenovo that I'm accustomed to. It may be a visual thing though, with the bezels around all of the keys.

No standard connectors, have to buy Apple-brand cable adapters for everything. SCAM.

No optical drives = Deal-breaker.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comments on Mac laptops
by daveak on Fri 23rd May 2014 07:00 in reply to "Comments on Mac laptops"
daveak Member since:
2008-12-29

No standard connectors? Come off it. I have a nice USB 3 blu-ray drive sat underneath my laptop stand and plugged into my laptop. I have a 28" monitor plugged into the HDMI port. Seems like standard ports to me.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comments on Mac laptops
by Bobthearch on Fri 23rd May 2014 07:12 in reply to "RE: Comments on Mac laptops"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

Ethernet, rs232, vga...

My Latitude has all of those. Even the low-budget Eeepc has VGA and ethernet. For connecting to monitors and televisions found in the "wild", VGA is more common than HDMI.

I don't even think the Macs have an SD card slot. The small model doesn't, the larger model might. The Eeepc has an SD slot.

Edited 2014-05-23 07:16 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 5

RE: Comments on Mac laptops
by bnolsen on Fri 23rd May 2014 14:42 in reply to "Comments on Mac laptops"
bnolsen Member since:
2006-01-06

huh? what's an optical drive for? I haven't had a machine with one in it for i think 5 years now. At work I keep a dual usb in the cabinet that gets use very rarely, funny mostly for doing windows installs. At home I have a single plug usb dvd which I've only ever used to rip media. Some gives/sends me a software DVD my first thought always is: "how quaint". Then the cursing as I have to go dig around to find the usb dvd drive.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Comments on Mac laptops
by Bobthearch on Fri 23rd May 2014 15:10 in reply to "RE: Comments on Mac laptops"
Bobthearch Member since:
2006-01-27

huh? what's an optical drive for?


Ripping CDs to create mp3 files. Gaming. Movies. Installing software. Burning CDs and DVDs. Accessing archived files. Playing music. Just about everything I use a computer for...

I don't expect an optical drive on a lightweight $300 travel netbook. But on a $2,000 workstation laptop? Ridiculous to not have it.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[2]: Comments on Mac laptops
by Alfman on Fri 23rd May 2014 18:15 in reply to "RE: Comments on Mac laptops"
Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

bnolsen,

huh? what's an optical drive for? I haven't had a machine with one in it for i think 5 years now.


Actually they can still prove useful.

My parents bought a laptop without a DVD drive and I ended up needing to buy them an external DVD drive to install software they needed. The external drive is much clunkier than an internal drive would have been, and much less portable. It doesn't need to come out often, but I find it lame to require external accessories.

DVDs are nice to have while we're on long road trips. Not everyone has access to expensive mobile broadband packages needed for streaming (ie netflix). And unfortunately most streaming services are DRM encumbered with media that cannot be saved for later viewing. This leaves DVDs as the most practical way of obtaining DRM-free media that can be used anywhere without restriction (owing to the ineffectiveness of DVDCSS).

Even commercial services like netflix have a much broader DVD collection than streaming collection. The public library's media collection requires a DVD player too. We purchased a collection of French Children's Shows for our kids to watch, which don't air locally and are only available to purchase as DVDs.

I don't want to make too huge a fuss over it, we can get by without DVDs, but I thought it'd be worth pointing out that there's still a lot of media out there only available on DVDs.

Reply Parent Score: 5