After finally paying for my first Apple product – the iPhone – I decided to also purchase a MacMini so I could start developing apps, as well as record music and video using the quality iLife suite.
#5 Window Dressing
Ironically, one of the features I love about owning a Mac is that you can also run Windows at the same time using virtualization. I wish the opposite were true, but alas Apple holds the keys to Zion close to its chest. Just having the option to run Windows makes the purchase of an Apple machine much easier, as I know that the same machine can be used for anything I would need OSX, Unix, or Windows for.
Most people regard Apple as the ultimate example of product design and quality. I have to agree – the products feel like quality and look like something you’d want to show others. Apple really is a status symbol amongst the younger generations. They also put User Experience first before anything else, and this is why they have captured the hearts of consumers. The quality that their products have helps to retain value and offers their consumers products that resell at close to the original new price, which actually eliminates the effective “tax” you pay as a premium over other products.
After OSX came out I began to look seriously at the Mac platform, but didn’t really take it seriously until the Intel transition. After experimenting with many Linux distributions I have decided that while Debian (and the Ubuntu shell) is still my favorite, I really enjoy having a beautiful modern user experience that OSX gives me while having the ability to access a full featured Unix system. I can finally use git natively with ease along with all the powerfully simple Unix commands for editing, searching, and much more. It really is close to an ideal setup with form and function.
#2 GarageBand and iLife
Recording music from a keyboard isn’t too difficult, but GarageBand makes the process simply enjoyable. I am finally able to record and edit without hassle. There’s a lot more that you can do with other instruments, voice, and audio loops, but I just appreciate that it came pre-installed and does what I need. I’m also using iPhoto a little bit (still deciding between Google’s Picasa) and when I take video I use iMovie because it feels almost like the other professional software applications but without the complexity and cost.
#1 iPhone Development
The main reason I took the plunge and purchased an Intel MacMini was for my interest in getting started developing for the iPhone, which I proceeded to immediately take apart and upgrade to 4GB RAM (which I highly recommend). Developing with XCode on the Mac is not my first choice, but it’s the only option. I probably wouldn’t have started using OSX if not for the iPhone, but it’s been mostly a good experience (after modifying many of the keyboard shortcuts). With the new virtualization tools and boot camp, I think my next computer purchase will be a Mac so that I can enjoy all three major systems on one machine without rebooting.