Always Behind the Curve

It's a fact that when it comes to hi-tech toys you will eventually be behind the curve. Sometimes it can take a year to fall behind. Other times it can be weeks.

I was reminded of this when I read Gizmodo this morning. I found out a new version of Drobo came out. I only bought mine three weeks ago. Should I send back the old one (if I can) and get the new improved one? Actually it would be too much of a pain to do so. I would need to offload the tons of data I already stored on the hard drives, then box up the unit, go to UPS and pay the shipping. I would then be without a unit for some time.

It's like when I bought the iPhone, or the iMac, or the Powerbook - I knew something better was going to come along. But you can't wait on your purchase. If you need that hi-tech device, buy it after doing the research. It just needs to do what you want it to do. Waiting isn't going to stop a newer and better version from coming out after your purchase. Just do it.

Other notable behind the curve moments for me:

  • iPhone - Purchased September 2007. New version July 2008
  • 24" White iMac - Purchased late 2006. New aluminum version mid-2007
  • 12"  PowerBook G4 - Purchased October 2005.  New Intel MacBook Pros release February 2006.

All I can say is keep up with the read the reviews and keep up with the news before buying.

The reasons haven't changed why I bought the Drobo in the first place. I was tired of buying external hard drives and wanted a simple and secure solution that Drobo offers. So what if it's only USB 2.0. I did my research and knew this fact going in.

Mac Heart Stopping Moment - A Reason to Backup

I dropped by 12" PowerBook

I'm a recent Mac adopter.  I bought my Powerbook last October and I just love it.  I probably will never buy another Windows machine, unless something drastically changes.  Last April, I did drop my PowerBook.  It didn't go boom but it did bend a bit.

I know accidents happen, so I was able to calm myself after the mishap.  Given the mobile nature of notebooks accidents are more likely to happen.  I've heard the life expectancy of a notebook is three years, give or take a year.   I understand this.  Imagine my suprise when I came home yesterday and couldn't power-up the PowerBook.

My thoughts started racing.  Did I drop this the PowerBook again?  Did the previous accident just have a delayed effect?  Did the cat sabatoge the PowerBook?  Can I convince farrah we should just buy a new one?  Oh crap, when was the last time I backed up this baby?

I started to freak.  farrah and I tried several steps before I started Internet searches on 12" PowerBook No Power.  There was several forum postings, and one off blog entries about this problem.  None of the solutions were working.  Stress on the old ticker was building.  

I then decided to go straight to the Apple support site for PowerBooks.  Can you guess what the first problem listed on the front page was?  It was "My computer won't turn on"  All I needed to do was a simply hold down the Shift-Control-Option-Power for five seconds, then power back up.  Whew!

My damaged 12" PowerBook

Disaster avoided, but a lessen learned.  Boy, do I need to do a backup and soon. 

Eh, maybe next week.

Mac or Windows?

Heard of the latest //Windows flaw?  From what I understand of it, and I may not understand all of it, but the only thing a user needs to do is visit a malicious website to get infected.  It doesn't matter if they are using Internet Explorer or Mozilla, just as long as they are on Windows!!!  The websites given as //examples seem innocent.  So now viewing a seemingly simple photo can get your computer into virus issues!!!

My Reasons?

I've been looking at moving to a Mac for some time.  I must admit part of it started with the iPod, a very cool product by Apple.  I find the iPod to be a solid piece of hardware that has been very useful in the two years that I have had it.  It's been a great gift that I truly appreciate.

Other input has come from radio shows I listen to, mainly //Leo Laporte's show, who touts Macs and Unix.  Leo continually has end users calling in with a lot of Windows problems.  Granted, 80% or more of the home users out their user Windows.  But listening to these callers has just convinced me that their must be something better out there.  One of Leo's main reasons for moving is he feels that non-power users shouldn't need to be security experts in order to use their computer.  I mean, you need to know to run spyware protection, to run virus protection, to know what to disable and enable in your browser.  I know all of this, but haven't realized that I really don't need to know all of this.  After all, there are no known viruses or spyware for the Mac (at least not now).

Another part of it stems from all the computer problems I have experienced, mostly through friends and relatives,  with Windows-based machines.  I was at someone's house (they shall go nameless) who was having computer problems.  They said their computer was running very slow.  I did a virus and spyware scan and...BAM!  forty-four instances of spyware and at least four viruses!  It was impossible to clean, so a reinstall will be the most likely solution.  (I still need to do this).

Then on our recent trip to Hawaii, someone asked me to look at their laptop to see what was wrong.  Guess what?  It had viruses galore on it!  The laptop wasn't even used that much on the Internet, and when it was it was through a dial-up connection!

So I took the leap to Mac. I have used a Mac before.  At my first Silicon Valley job we used Macs to answer customer questions.  I took a while to get used to, and the group I was in was the only group on Macs.  I slowly moved that group to Windows, as I had some problems exchanging reports with my boss who was on Windows.  So that was the last time I touched a Mac.

Moving to Mac

I've been living with my Mac PowerBook for about a month now, about the same amount of time I've been out of a job!  My last job had a perk where you could get a slight discount on Apple products.  I decided to use it by purchasing a Mac computer.  I wasn't sure which one I would get, but I knew I wanted one.

I went with the 12" PowerBook.  I knew I wanted to take a little leap, without too much cost.  The Mac Mini might have been a good choice, but I didn't need to replace my desktop.  I looked toward laptops since I wanted to be portable.  I was initially going with the 15" PowerBook, but the price for me turned out to be a factor.  Plus I loved the size and feel of the 12" PowerBook.

How's it Going?

What I'm finding is that the Mac is suiting most of my computer needs: surfing, emailing, and composing Word documents.  I did plunk down some $$ for Microsoft Office, but other than that the PowerBook came with all that I needed.  I still haven't found a suitable photo management program, and probably won't look for one until I get a Mac desktop computer.  This PowerBook only has a 100 GB hard drive, so I'm not using it for music storage or image editing.  But I am using it for everything else.

The only outstanding issue I have is my Mac is running slow on my home network.  I don't know why this is the case, as  it seems to be running fine here at Starbucks.  I'll need to figure this one out.  But hey, I highly recommend the Mac at this point.  And with the new Intel Macs coming out soon,  you should consider a Mac if you are looking for a new computer.