New Computer time

Computers just don’t last.  At least this is the impression I get when I see what’s out there.

My present machine is four years old now, and it’s starting to get a lot of wear and tear on it.  The finish is wearing off the case, it’s continually getting bugs and running slow (in spite of my maintenance efforts) and overall it’s just not doing the job that I originally bought it for.

To use some jargon that is as old as the machine is, it’s so 2007.

So the question is, what do I get now?

I really like the Macbook Air, but I don’t like the fact it comes with only a 13.3-inch screen at the largest.  I look at it and can’t figure out how I would hook an external monitor, keyboard, etc. up to it.  I do like the fact that Macs do not have as many virus issues as PC’s.  I was an Apple guy back in the late 80’s/early 90’s up to the point that I moved to Wyoming to go to school.  Since then, I’ve been exclusively PC.

Another issue holding me back from buying the Macbook Air is that I own the full PC version of Microsoft Office.  The one that includes Access, Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, etc.  It’s my understanding that I would have to purchase new Office software for the Mac if I go that way.

The Macbook Air also has a relatively small storage capacity.  Though the 128 or 256 GB of storage that it has is much more than I have now, it’s just not that much in 2011 terms.  I do have a 1 TB external drive already, so perhaps I can attach that to hold files that I do not wish to carry around with me when I take the computer out of the house.

If I don’t go with a Macbook of some sort, I’ll have to go PC, which is much less expensive but bug prone.  Not sure where to go there.

Do any of you have good suggestions?

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8 Responses to “New Computer time”

  1. I find that if you have a good anti-virus program you don’t get as many bugs. We do a lot of downloading and don’t really have many issues at all. But then again I’m married to a system adminitrator/information protection nerd.

  2. Yes, being married to a member of the Nerd Herd does have its advantages. 🙂

  3. It should be easy to hook up an external monitor and keyboard to a MacBook Air — there is a display port on the side — you’ll need an adapter to go from it to a monitor, and then a keyboard could go in the USB port. With respect to MS Office — The least expensive version of Office for Mac 2011 does not include Access or Outlook and is not, from my perspective, that expensive. Caveats: (1) Access doesn’t exist for Mac and I never use Access, so it’s not a loss for me. (2) I don’t use Outlook (although the version I includes it) as all of my calendar and email tools are on the web (think Google)

    Assuming you are like me, then the question is about the storage space on the internal hard-drive: What do you do? Do you need a lot of storage space? Do you always need it?

    I know that my next computer will be the MacBook Air… I’ve been so thrilled with the quality of my MacBook that I would be hard pressed to go back to a Windows based laptop. About the only think I won’t be doing is upgrading my MacBook to Lion–I’ve decided that I can stick with Snow Leopard for now.

  4. I wanted a Mac, but couldn’t afford the one I desired so I ended up buying another Dell. This time, I went away from the entry-level Inspiron and bought the XPS. It’s speedy, I’ll give it that much. It also has a 640GB (maybe 650, I forget) hard drive.

  5. I do use Access once per year when I do the custom project related to my former career field. I use it to boil a database with 700-million records, so there really isn’t a way I can get rid of it. I do think the Mac could run the Windows version of office with the PC emulator, so perhaps that would work.

    Then again, I could just keep my present PC and use it only when I Need to do the custom project.

    Since I’m an iPhone guy, it would be nice to have the Mac to better interface with my phone. Of course in my career field, I don’t really have a huge set of contacts or networking going on. I mean really, what kind of networking do you need to push pills in an old folks home?

    I figure I’m a month or two out from a new machine, so no big hurry here.

    Thanks to all for your insights.

  6. If you actually use Access, then I wouldn’t get a Mac — for the PC emulator, you need an actual copy of Windows (for installation and for the license) — and you’ll end up eating up a large chunk of your hard-disk. Probably not worth it… At least to me. You might do some research — maybe there is a program for Mac that can open and work with Access files… However I don’t know: I’ve never once used Access.

  7. Access is a picky, picky bitch. I know, having used it for my dissertation research. And, old Access hates new Access.

  8. Where is everyone these days?

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