When and why did you switch to Apple? What were you using before?

By 2007, I’d been happily using DOS and Windows for 20 years. I needed to buy a PC. That was the peak of Windows Vista—or, rather, I should say, its nadir. Everybody hated it. I was upgrading from Windows XP, which was, I thought, a great operating system. But it was long in the tooth.

Meanwhile, I was a fan of Merlin Mann and Gina Trapani, founding editor of Lifehacker. They spent a lot of time talking about Mac tips and trips, and particularly Quicksilver. I thought, “I’m going to have to learn a new operating system anyway. Why not learn one people actually like.”

Plus, I was a tech journalist at the time, and thought it would be fun to blog about my switcher journey.

And so I took a leap of faith and bought a Mac and have been happy I did so ever since.

Ironically: The reason I needed a new PC was that I was deeply absorbed in Second Life, and my company-issue ThinkPad just did not have the horsepower to run SL. But the Mac turned out to be rubbish at SL, with a flaky graphics card that caused the world to flicker occasionally. But it worked well enough and I have been happy with my decision.


When I went to college in 1991, they were using NeXT computers. I have no idea how that came to happen, but I would love to know the story.

When I graduated and went to seminary, a friend who lived in Princeton (and who.I had met on the comp.sys.next.* Usenet groups gave me his NeXTStation (he had a new Intel-based version NeXT).

I got an Intel-based OpenStep computer in ’97 (¿I think?).

That died sometime in 2001. I had fought long and hard to keep it alive because it had been hugely expensive.

I bought a Dell Inspiron 7500 running Windows 2000 (because Mac OS X was not really ready yet) and hated it. Hated hated hated it. It was better than Windows 98, but that’s not saying much.

In early 2004 I bought a PowerBook, which turned out to be one of the last PowerPC Macs made (there was one minor rev. before the switch to Intel).

Never looked back.


I entered the Mac world via the success of the iPod in 2005. I bought the Apple PowerBook G4 1.5 12" which was one of the last PowerPC Macs before the transition to Intel. I think it came with Mac OS X Tiger. Loved that machine and it still ranks as one of my favourite Macs.

Edit: forgot to mention what I switched from! I had an old Gateway all-in-one PC from 2004 that was hideous. I mean look at this thing:

Gateway Profile 5.5 17in 7


I did field service (and a little programming). I would work on our machines and the Windows PCs attached, and running our cad software.
Then I would get home and something would be wrong with my wife’s PC, or my PC. The PCs were HP Pavilions, and just not up to HP’s quality (before they got into consumer goods).

So I decided to try something different - Linux. I’d been dabbling for several years (well, since 0.99pl12), so went all in. Linux at the time was like building your own car just so you can go somewhere.

I wanted a tool that just worked, so I found an old beige G3 at a computer shop, bought it, and really liked OS9. An upcoming vacation became an excuse justification to buy a lamp/sunflower G4 iMac and loved it.

Edit to add: OS9 was the most Amiga-like interface I had seen since my beloved Amiga 1000.


I started using a computer in 1964, an IBM 7090, doing data analysis and simple graph plotting. It was too expensive for home use so I waited until 1979 to buy an Apple 2 with built in assembler.


My first Apple device was an iPod Touch. We were then gifted a 17” MacBook Pro by my wife’s sister who bought it but decided she didn’t like it. We were still working and using Windows laptops. Since we were nearing retirement we decided we liked the Apple ecosystem better and we’re tired of supporting Windows for 20+ years. For my retirement gift I got a 2011 15” MacBook Pro and my wife got a 2011 21” iMac. She had also purchased the first iPad. We were late to the party on the iPhone due to poor AT&T coverage where we lived and traveled. We also got a substantial corporate discount on Verizon. My first iPhone was a 5s.

This past spring I gave my MBP to a nephew as a HS graduation present. My wife’s 2011 iMac is sitting on my workbench where I use it for reference when working on stuff. My wife uses a 2017 5k iMac and I have a M1 iMac. We both have older MacBook Airs for travel.


Iiiii swiiiiitcheeeeed beeecaaaaauuuuseee Wiiiinnndoooowwwwws Viiiiiiissstttaaaa waaaaasss ruuuunnnniiiinnnngg aaaabbbouuuuuutttt thiiiiissssssss quuuuuuuuuuiiiiiiiiiicccccccckkkkkkllllllllyyyyyyy…


Wait, really? Even with SP2?

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The first computer I owned was an IBM PC and around 1990 I purchased a Bondwell portable that ran DR-DOS. Then one day in '91 I received a memo at work saying we were adding Macs to our collection of DOS PCs and DEC Terminals and our new LCs arrived the next day. Four years later we switched to Windows 95.

At the turn of the century :grinning: I’m working for a .com using Windows, Macs, Solaris, and some IBM iron. Apple releases OS X and in '03 I purchase my second personal computer a Power Mac G5.


I thought you were typing using a butterfly keyboard at first…

I switched because my iPod Classic, which my wife convinced me to finally spend the cash on, just worked. Unlike every other music player I’d tried. Then the iPad came and I loved it. So, after some time I switched to Mac via the Mini.
I’d always been on PCs because the cost of entry was lower, and thought I loved the hackability. I’m a real tinkerer.
Now, I understand that a well-engineered system is so much nicer for me.


The first computer was a pre-owned Apple //e - love it to death but did not go to //gs nor Mac because they were too expensive for me. Ended up with a Windows PC for many years until the Mac switched to intel. I think there was a time, circa 2010-2012 where a MacBook Air cost merely $999 or less and that’s where I switched. Love, love the Mac then. Fast, snappy and, man, I love the gesture control. I’m glad I made the switch, but these days, my wallet is crying!


My first computer was an Atari 400 that I bought in late 1983. It had a membrane keyboard and a cassette deck for storage. I tried to learn Basic on it but it didn’t get much use. I moved on to an Apple IIc in June or July of 1984. I used in mostly for word processing. Bought the original Macintosh 128k in December of 1984 because of the graphical user interface. MacWrite and MacPaint were the major selling points.


I grew up with them—Apple computers were used in the public schools I attended and we had one at home as well (a Mac LC.) When I as in high school, I worked one summer to save up to buy a computer. What did I buy? A Power Computing Mac clone. Anybody remember those? I don’t remember what model I had, but I seem to remember it having more substantial specs than what Apple was offering at the time.


I didn’t get one until the white MacBook, which is the most affordable when my PC broke down. My side hustle was to fix PC and Windows, but when it comes to my own machine there was nothing I can do. I was tired of tinkering. And since I use Macs at work, it’s better to just borrow my Mom’s credit card and buy my own since I have a side project designing a website. It took 7 years before I was able to afford one by buying with a CC. The MacBook was worth 4x my salary as an Art Director.

My first encounter with Macs with PowerMac G3 was in the mall but it was expensive. When I had my internship with a printing company, I was able to work on Powermac G3, the senior designer explained why she loves working on a Mac. I fell in love with the interface, the easy workflow. Having Photoshop just basically floating along with the Finder and be able to see your files scattered on the desktop was new to me. I told myself that I will never work for a company that uses Windows PC, I don’t care how old the Mac that’s available. I worked on numerous old Macintosh that runs System 7, System 8 then finally OS9 and OS X with the Bondi iMac.

Now I am working on a company supplied 13" Intel MacBook Pro, and I have a 16" MBP for personal stuff.

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I came from a background using Unix, then Linux. I was never a Windows user. In the early 2000s I was a network engineer and needed to use systems compatible with the servers I was running (Solaris and Linux). I had used a Mac at work from 1995-1999 when I was a journalist and this small taste of the platform had me wanting more. As soon as I could afford it, I went all in once OSX was released.

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I was in the PC world right from the start. Went from a Commodore 64 to an IBM PC in 1981. Remember this beast? Still have a vivid memory of the sounds it made. The beeps, the keyboard and when it asked for the next disk to be loaded …

Later when the Intel Pentiums came out I started building my own PCs and have done so at a rate of 1 per year (always selling and upgrading) until I started using an iMac at work in 2002 and fell in love with Apple. It lasted until 2008 when I bought my first own Macs: a cheese grater Mac Pro and unibody MacBook Pro. I have been Mac only ever since upgrading to a 2013 Mac Pro and new MacBook Pros every three years or so. Currently, I rock a 16" MacBook Pro as a portable heater, an M1 Mac Mini as a daily driver and a 2018 iPad Pro as a mobile machine with a new iPad mini on its way.

The 2013 Mac Pro still goes strong as a remote server/desktop at MacStadium. One of the best Pro retirement solutions I have seen.


I started programming under MPE on an HP3000 in the early 1980s, then moved on to IBM PCs and later one of the luggable Compaq portables. For some reason I don’t remember, I bought a “blueberry” Apple iBook in 1999. It was probably Mac OS 8 or 9. I really hated that computer – compared to what I was used to working with at the time, it was slow, and confusingly laid out. By 2006 I had the big Mac Pro – running Tiger, if I recall. I loved that machine, tricked out with all the memory and disk it could hold, and ran it into the ground. Since 2006 I’ve had a succession of MacBook Air and Pro models.


I had a Commodore Vic20- my parents bought us the first Mac. Been that way ever since

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First computer I ever used was an Apple ][ that read data off of a cassette tape. We had an Apple IIe, followed by a Macintosh Centris.

However, when the time came to go off to college in the mid-90s, pre-NeXT acquisition, right at the nadir of Apple as a company, I bought a Gateway tower running Windows 95 as my dorm room computer. I ended up staying on PCs for over a decade.

In 2008 I started a job as a professor and persuaded my department to get me the original MacBook Air. I know that machine gets a lot of grief, but for my use case as a Keynote presentation machine it was great.

I was still using Windows desktops both at home and at work for the next few years, but eventually I bought a Mac mini as my home computer around 2011 and I haven’t looked back since.

On the mobile side, I circled through several PDA options over the years, including Palm and Windows CE, but none of them really stuck. Got in to the iPod with an iPod mini when it came out, then bought myself an iPhone 3G to celebrate getting my first real job. It’s been a new iPhone every two years like clockwork since then.