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Friday, October 24, 2008

tell me #5

I am not kidding when I ask your opinion on this -- I truly don't know:
Mac Vs. PC -- what's the difference?
P.C. stands for personal computer, does it not?
I know that Mac is a namebrand (from Apple, right), but...
Aren't they BOTH personal computers?
Which is better, and why?
(Please don't insult me here -- I know I should know the difference by now,
but I don't. That's why I'm asking you.)


Carina said...

Mac and PCs have different hardware architecture and operating systems.

PCs used to mean that they were IBM compatible because PCs were built on IBC microprocessors--that's all the hardware stuff. Macs had a different hardware architecture, different microprocessor.

On top of the hardware are the operating systems. OSs give you, the user, an easy way to interact with the machine. Operating Systems are software, not hardware like a microprocessor.

Windows is an operating system and was exclusive to PCs. Macs had their own operating system (Mac OS.)

You can't use software on a non-compatible operating system. It would be like trying to make your DVD player take your 8-track. It's not going to work.

These days Apple uses an operating system that is based on UNIX (not MAC OS) and uses microprocessors/hardware from Intel, essentially making it so that you can run Windows on a Mac.

Lots of software will run on both Macs and PCs these days, but there are still plenty of incompatibilities.

i i eee said...

I think it's a personal preference, thinking one is better than the other. I love my Mac. I also love that I don't worry about viruses with having a Mac.

Shar said...

Having used a PC for 10 years and my Mac for the last 2... I'll never go back to my PC. I absolutely love my Mac. It's way more simple to use, no viruses, no problems.

If you are ever in the market, I would recommend the Mac. I was stubborn about getting one, but I'm so glad that I did.

Anonymous said...

I'm a Mac girl through and through, but here are a couple more details:

Initially people preferred Macs because they were a lot more user friendly. Also, way back when I worked in the newspaper industry Macs were preferred for any time of desktop publishing. PCs have come a long way in both regards, but most people I know doing any type of artistic work (desktop publishing, graphic design, illustrating, etc.) prefer a Mac.

PCs can be WAY cheaper than Macs. I just read this from Steve Jobs (who a co-worker calls "the devil incarnate," on Tuesday: ""We don't know how to make a $500 computer that's not a piece of junk, and our DNA won't let us do that.""

I use a Mac at home and a PC at work, so you can use both. But if ever I can save some pennies and buy my own laptop, it will be a Mac.

As i i eee said Macs have kind of stayed under the radar when it comes to viruses, but that doesn't mean you don't have to worry about them--there are viruses for Macs and I suspect they will increase because Macs are increasing their market share somewhat.

Most people I know have strong preferences one way or the other, but of people who've tried both most say "One you go Mac you never go back."

Monica said...

I just like Macs because they look so cool.

Geo said...

My Mac understand me.

Anonymous said...

Mac=very user friendly. LOVE it.

Hildie said...

I love my mac. Won't ever, ever go back to a PC. The cool kids all use Macs.

About viruses: I actually saw a report on the news about a mac virus. They are so rare, that creating one makes the news. They interviewed the guy who created the virus. It did nothing; the guy just wanted to create one to prove it could be done.

The biggest bummer, though, is that lesser-known computer games are not made for macs as often. if you want The Sims, no problem. But Zoo Tycoon and Barbie's Pony Pals? Forget it!

QueenScarlett said...

Mac = great advertising
PC = not so much

I bought into the advertising a year ago and dumped my PC for a ginormous iMac.

Everyone who had already been inducted into the iMac cult CHEERED!

Then I had problems. My Mac would randomly go blue screen on me. I denied anything was wrong to my PC "I told you so" hubby. It happened so often I couldn't pretend it wasn't happening. And I was scared for my photos.

I spent more than 6 months asking people - calling their incompetent customer service.

Then I sent an email to Steve Jobs and only then did I get some action. Mostly they were rude and unaccommodating...telling me that I should have been talking to tier 1 customers service and not whatever tier I was talking to as if I ought to know this!!! All resulting in me raising my voice, soliciting press.

OH...and all those that cheered me on my new iMac citizenship... suddenly mute. Told me I was an exception...

Turns out that brand-spanking new iMac I got... came with a bad motherboard. So instead of getting me one of the new iMacs... they sent some guy to replace my motherboard... what did I get for my trouble? No ipod, etc... no... I received pitches to purchase more over-priced accessories...etc...

So... what have I learned. Never believe in hype. I believed it and I worked in an industry that promotes hype...although within SEC regulations (har).

All computers are the same... they have pros and cons... and in year two of owning an iMac... I'm still struggling on learning how everything works.

I believed the ads... that Macs intuitive... it's not - and I don't have hours to spend taking the classes with little kids... plus I have a life... blogging. hehehe

Does it have some cool stuff... sure... but those are frills. What scared me most was how... insular the iMac community is... it's like you're shunned or fearful of saying anything remotely critical about Macs... even when stuff happens.

I bought the Mac so I have to live with it... my expensive choice. Sure I like that when I minimize my windows it does this pretty genie effect...and I like dragging things on the screen... was it worth all the time and money... I dunno. Maybe if I was into the "status" and "image" that Mac promotes... but I'm not.

That's my 0.02 plus change. ;-)

Wendy said...

I have used both and prefer PCs. I know Macs are better for graphics, or at least used to be. But I like being able to get to some of the inner structure of the PC that one can't get to with a Mac, like being able to defrag (at least, it used to be that way. It's been over a decade since I owned a Mac).

La Yen said...

I know that all of the cool kids have Macs, but I am too old, I guess, to like them or their loud rap music.

I have been using a PC for so long that a Mac is no longer intuitive for me--it just drives me crazy to learn new key commands and new tricks.

Also, I can afford a PC. And I can afford to replace it when a newer one comes out, or when Jooj or Rocky knocks it over. If I were to buy a Mac I would be having to commit to it for many, many years.

Semi Granola Mom said...

I like my pc, it cost me a whole 10 dollars at a yardsale :) But if money weren't an option, would totally go Mac :)

Kaerlig said...

Dave is a Mac guy, thus I am a Mac girl. We don't have anything else. If Dave were to post on this, he'd have ample reasons why mac is better. I don't really know much.

L. Mo said...


L. Mo said...

I win for having the shortest comment.

Jamie said...

I've always used a PC for work - but this week I bought a new Macbook to use for my personal stuff and I'm loving it.

Christi said...

thnx for asking. have wondered the same myself.

TX Girl said...

I have both a PC and Mac at home. I only have a PC because of a couple programs I could not run on a MAC and I bought it before it was practical to run your mac as a pc (ie prior to the intel processor).

I love that I rarely IF EVER have to reboot my mac or kill a program because it isn't responding. I don't really worry all that much about the crazy virus emails, unlike my (although I know those freaking lunatics have started to create viruses for macs)PC. I would say all in all the mac is more stable.

My husband is a mac guy so I became one because of him, but I LOVE IT. The programming makes more sense. However, if you are a PC user and switch to a MAC, you are going to have a HUGE learning curve. Okay, not huge, but you have to realize it is set up totally different. You are basically learning how to work a computer from the beginning..more or less.

Arya said...

I have owned both a PC and a MAC - I currently have a MAC and love it because it really has made editing photographs way more easier then it was on my PC. I have less steps with the MAC then I did with the PC But I can accomplish the same thing on both. I like the MAC better for editing my pictures and now that I can have Microsoft word on my mac I am oober happy. But my hubby still loves his PC as do all my other family - they call me the blacksheep of computer

David said...

People ask me this question all the time when they see the computers we use at the store. My answer: It's the operating system.

Steve Jobs is neither the devil nor the messiah. He happens to be really good at what he does, but he's also kind-of a dickweed. People need to get over it and evaluate apple products on their own merits.

Underneath the shiny polycarbonate and aluminum enclosures, macs don't differ much from pc's. They are basically made of the same hardware, and subject to the same failures.

But the mac OS is far superior to windows. (And as Carina pointed out, is based on BSD Unix, which is very reliable and powerful.)

So for me the difference is that the software is more stable and reliable. I'm like that british vacuum inventor in that I too want things to work properly.

To give credit where credit is due, I have to admit that Microsoft has done an amazing job of creating an operating system that works with the broadest possible combination of hardware and peripherals. But in the process Microsoft has created a gigantic, bloated animal of an OS that is inherently plagued by millions of vulnerabilities.

I don't need a computer like that. I just want one that works well. Apples' approach of strictly designing the hardware and software as a package makes more sense to me. I don't want to have to be a technician in order to use a computer. And back when I had a PC, I spent more time working on the computer than working with it.

It also helps that they have shiny polycarbonate and aluminum enclosures.

Lyle said...

MACs can be great for personal pleasure. PCs can be great for business uses. PC's have come along ways with being able to use some of the same "originally intended for a MAC" software.

Having a machine that is all self contained [monitor, processor, DVD drive, web cam, etc] is a great feature. [MACs], but if ever something goes haywire, then you're probably not going to be able to tinker and replace anything on your own. You'll have to send it in.

Carina said...

First of all, we built our box. Second, we are a PC house. I love my PCs. Joe has a mac from school and hates it. Although I keep trying to get him to switch to a Linux box because I am nerdy like that.

I even like Vista, like, a lot. I can see getting a mac if you do design or photography, because they are simply unmatched in that capacity.

However, we'll probably stay a PC outfit.

bids2calvin said...

First of all I have a pc in a mac family. There are things about my pc that drive me crazy but 4 out of 4 of my siblings that swear by mac have had their mac crash and wipe out everything. They still bought another mac though. I am sure pc has similar stories but the odds in my family are not so good for mac. We have had our pc crash but were able to retrieve everything off of it.

Anonymous said...

Can of worms, sister, can of worms...

I used a PC since they existed until this fall when I got a MAC. My dh is a software engineer so this was a long debate.

The reason I went MAC is the OS is more resistant to viruses because it is built on a UNIX base. Also, with Intel chip I run Windows on it and can use it like a PC until I can afford to switch over all of my programs.

The biggest difference so far is how the OS works - when a program is in the background it goes to sleep and doesn't hog memory, unlike windows where so much is running in the background it kills your processing speed.

I use Photoshop, Itunes, Bridge, Aperture and more all at the same time and the thing still sings.

The reason for the huge following of MAC - Apple inspired a tribe by simply listening to their customers and creating a system that answered their needs. PC on the other hand produces what they think is cool and then tries to convince the consumer why it is.

I know I shouldn't say it so cuttingly - like I said - can of worms...