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HP To Apple: You Win

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Hewlett Packard, the world's biggest PC maker, gets ready to leave the PC world.

HP To Apple: You Win

‎Apple’s Mac sales continue to grow and have outpaced the rest of the PC industry for 21 consecutive quarters. That’s over five consecutive years.

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But the big picture item of today remains what HP is no longer doing: making Post-PC devices or even PCs themselves. In less than the span of a year, the biggest PC maker in the world realized not only that they couldn’t be Apple, but that they couldn’t even compete with Apple. And they admitted it. And called the fight. It was a first-round T.K.O.

The question is: does this make HP look foolish, cowardly, or smart? The answer today may be different from the one tomorrow.

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It's a shame, I have an HP Pavilion laptop and I actually prefer its appearance to Mac books. And it was a whole lot cheaper than a Mac too.

I have HP printers and a computer. I've only just begun transitioning to Mac. I have an iMac and my next computer will be some version of it also. I got tired of all the problems with new installation problems on the PC. I felt like I was being used by Microsoft as a beta tester whenever they upgraded.

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When it comes to price and Apple products, I often think of high quality shoes that cost several hundred dollars but outlast the cheaper shoes.

I switched to the Mac going on four years ago and my experience has been dramatically positive. I spent over $2,000 on my first MacBook Pro, which was definitely more than a PC laptop would have cost. But the value I got from it was far beyond the PCs I ever owned. The Mac was always stable, the programs always ran well, and I never suffered the slowdowns that were routine when I left PCs running for days. I could leave the Mac on for WEEKS and suffer none of the ill effects.

Over the years I've acquired other Macs (and most recently a new Mac Mini) and transformed my entire home to an Apple 'ecosystem' consisting of a Time Capsule (1TB drive and AirPort Extreme combined), an Apple TV connected to my 50" plasma TV, plus the iPad and iPhone. I've noticed a huge increase in my productivity, not just because I like Apple devices, but because I so rarely have to maintain them that I can focus on the tasks most important to me.

I understand that many tinkerers get frustrated with Apple products because they're self contained and make modifying the hardware difficult if not impossible. That is exactly the point, though. Apple products appeal to so many people BECAUSE they are easy to use appliances that enable people to get things done. The majority of the buying public is not looking to tinker. If they were, Apple would not have become as successful as they have.

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As for myself I haven't switched yet. I built my own machine for the same amount as a baseline mac and it is vastly more powerful (which I need to run massive montecarlo simulations faster). I've found windows errors have more or less disappeared. I did install Avast etc. but that took me very little time due to the power of the machine.

That being said, I agree that the design and engineering of macs is second to none. My personal phone is an iPhone 4 (still using a blackberry for work) and everybody at work is getting one for their work phone, chucking their blackberry in the process (the RIM share price is following Nokia down the pit of retirement home territory).

I do not know where Steve Jobs intends to go but could well foresee a future - in say, a decade - where people like me won't be building a PC anymore. And there is definitely little value-add from HP on the PC side since macs now have ample power to do fast and reliably anything most users want to do (watch movies, see pictures, do office work).

I had a chance to see a setup like Jason's at a friend's home and it was really impressive. One really has to see it in action to "get" it. Jobs really is the tech genius of our generation and I wish Bill Gates hadn't retired in 2000 (under massive anti trust law suits) so that we could see what he would throw at him in answer with his 1980-90s genius.

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Jobs really is the tech genius of our generation and I wish Bill Gates hadn't retired in 2000 (under massive anti trust law suits) so that we could see what he would throw at him in answer with his 1980-90s genius.

I'm sure you know that the Gates helped relaunch Apple and returned Jobs to his "proper" place.

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As long as hardware manufacturers like Intel, AMD, Corsair, Asus, MSI, nVidia and so on stay in business, I think non-brand (i.e. self- or store assembled) PC's will win out in terms of price/performance, max performance for enthusiasts, and tolerance of customizing. But there's obviously a big market for quality closed systems such as those of Apple. But that kind of reliability, support and "tightness" comes at the cost of consumer control over the software and hardware. Good thing the computer and handheld markets aren't regulated enough to destroy either segment, so people can still choose according to their preferences.

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Jobs really is the tech genius of our generation and I wish Bill Gates hadn't retired in 2000 (under massive anti trust law suits) so that we could see what he would throw at him in answer with his 1980-90s genius.

I'm sure you know that the Gates helped relaunch Apple and returned Jobs to his "proper" place.

I didn't actually. That sounds like a good story, what happened? I did find it strange that MBA types would put Jobs back in charge.

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I'm sure you know that the Gates helped relaunch Apple and returned Jobs to his "proper" place.

I didn't actually. That sounds like a good story, what happened? I did find it strange that MBA types would put Jobs back in charge.

I'll let people who know the story better than I do type it out. What I remember is that Gates sought to revive a defunct Apple, partly in response to the anti-trust nonsense he was subjected to. To that end he and brought in its founder as the "new" CEO.

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For serious computer users one of Mac's best features is Terminal, which is about as identical to being on a Linux/Unix command-line as you can get in a commercial GUI software. If I were to work on a PC and use Window's equivalent of Terminal, I would need to download multiple 3rd party software programs just to perform my daily work duties.

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Seems like yesterday might've been the day for Apple shareholders to sell. I don't know exactly how integral Jobs has been to the Apple of the past 7 years or so, but they sure have a lot to thank him for.

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For serious computer users one of Mac's best features is Terminal, which is about as identical to being on a Linux/Unix command-line as you can get in a commercial GUI software. If I were to work on a PC and use Window's equivalent of Terminal, I would need to download multiple 3rd party software programs just to perform my daily work duties.

You can run the cygwin bash shell directly on windows, which includes the usual set of bash commands in one package, or use the larger cygwin application api with an enormous set of linux applications pre-compiled for windows to run from the bash command line or from the X-Windows gui (including gcc, lyx and latex, etc.).

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For serious computer users one of Mac's best features is Terminal, which is about as identical to being on a Linux/Unix command-line as you can get in a commercial GUI software. If I were to work on a PC and use Window's equivalent of Terminal, I would need to download multiple 3rd party software programs just to perform my daily work duties.

You can run the cygwin bash shell directly on windows, which includes the usual set of bash commands in one package, or use the larger cygwin application api with an enormous set of linux applications pre-compiled for windows to run from the bash command line or from the X-Windows gui (including gcc, lyx and latex, etc.).

ha, so if you download and install this package you can do ssh/file transfer, vi(m), convert, etc on MS-DOS command-line? But at that point why not just install linux or buy a computer with linux already on it?

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ha, so if you download and install this package you can do ssh/file transfer, vi(m), convert, etc on MS-DOS command-line? But at that point why not just install linux or buy a computer with linux already on it?

It depends on whether or not you want to run common (and not-so-common) Windows applications (or enjoy the thrill of Windows Updates -- who would want to give that up?).

Most of the time I use Windows applications, with over 100 applications and utilities installed, so I also have separate instances of programs like ssh, bash and emacs integrated directly into the Windows gui and which I use constantly. I rarely use the msdos command shell, using instead either bash or the enhanced 4NT that greatly expands on msdos for both the command line and scripts, but I access what I need most often directly from Windows rather than through a command shell.

The cygwin x-windows environment and applications are available when I need them (running under Windows without rebooting). The cygwin api and application package installer is very flexible for selecting and limiting the options you want to install out of the complete set if you need more than the basic bash shell, but configuring it is not easy to deal with if you're not accustomed to linux.

If someone literally wants a linux environment then he should start with a linux-based OS, but it's not true that serious computer use is equivalent to linux or a mac with a linux command line interface. What is true is that you have to be pretty "serious" to configure and use a linux environment at all, but that is not a requirement for doing otherwise serious work.

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ha, so if you download and install this package you can do ssh/file transfer, vi(m), convert, etc on MS-DOS command-line? But at that point why not just install linux or buy a computer with linux already on it?

It depends on whether or not you want to run common (and not-so-common) Windows applications (or enjoy the thrill of Windows Updates -- who would want to give that up?).

What version of Windows do you use? Are the updates that bad? I've never owned a Windows personal computer.
Most of the time I use Windows applications, with over 100 applications and utilities installed, so I also have separate instances of programs like ssh, bash and emacs integrated directly into the Windows gui and which I use constantly. I rarely use the msdos command shell, using instead either bash or the enhanced 4NT that greatly expands on msdos for both the command line and scripts, but I access what I need most often directly from Windows rather than through a command shell.

The cygwin x-windows environment and applications are available when I need them (running under Windows without rebooting). The cygwin api and application package installer is very flexible for selecting and limiting the options you want to install out of the complete set if you need more than the basic bash shell, but configuring it is not easy to deal with if you're not accustomed to linux.

That's neat that it works so well! So you can construct a little Linux sub-world inside of Windows, but maintain Windows for all the other convenient applications?
...but it's not true that serious computer use is equivalent to linux or a mac with a linux command line interface. What is true is that you have to be pretty "serious" to configure and use a linux environment at all, but that is not a requirement for doing otherwise serious work.
I didn't mean to say that only "serious" users use Linux/Unix/Mac, but that serious users who do use Mac appreciate the power of Terminal.

I'm a "serious user" in the sense that I work all day on a computer, but that's using a computer to do science work, not using a computer to do "computer work"! I wouldn't have the patience to play with Linux or learn its arcane subtleties for using it as my standard OS.

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ha, so if you download and install this package you can do ssh/file transfer, vi(m), convert, etc on MS-DOS command-line? But at that point why not just install linux or buy a computer with linux already on it?

It depends on whether or not you want to run common (and not-so-common) Windows applications (or enjoy the thrill of Windows Updates -- who would want to give that up?).

What version of Windows do you use?

XP on a six-year old laptop, currently on a second partition for the OS that hadn't been used much and which I had to switch to when the primary one progressively deteriorated into molasses.

Are the updates that bad? I've never owned a Windows personal computer.

usoft has a steady stream of them filling up the disk partition and for which the installation and 'uninstall' files have to be moved off to keep the disk from filling up. But they at least used to work. The latest thrills have come from their 'automatic updates' failing, requiring manual intervention in the system files to try to get them to complete. They have been breaking on multiple installations of the OS on a couple of computers and this seems to be a common problem because usoft has issued some tools to fix update problems.

Starting over by cleaning off the partition and reinstalling the OS is very time consuming because it requires reinstalling so many applications that I use, and then configuring it all to the way it has evolved for years in accordance with my preferences. I keep all the programs and their installation files and setup documentation on a dedicated partition so they don't have to be reloaded from CDs or downloaded again, but it still takes forever to go through it all to re-install and configure them.

Most of the time I use Windows applications, with over 100 applications and utilities installed, so I also have separate instances of programs like ssh, bash and emacs integrated directly into the Windows gui and which I use constantly. I rarely use the msdos command shell, using instead either bash or the enhanced 4NT that greatly expands on msdos for both the command line and scripts, but I access what I need most often directly from Windows rather than through a command shell.

The cygwin x-windows environment and applications are available when I need them (running under Windows without rebooting). The cygwin api and application package installer is very flexible for selecting and limiting the options you want to install out of the complete set if you need more than the basic bash shell, but configuring it is not easy to deal with if you're not accustomed to linux.

That's neat that it works so well! So you can construct a little Linux sub-world inside of Windows, but maintain Windows for all the other convenient applications?

Yes. The x-windows system runs in its own window. The linux application binaries are all compiled for Windows. If you want to use something not provided in the cygwin system you need the source code so you can compile it for Windows. So the programs work, but it's not like running linux directly -- everything is compiled to run under Windows. They also use the normal Windows file system, and access data wherever you want to put it in the Windows folder hierarchy.

...but it's not true that serious computer use is equivalent to linux or a mac with a linux command line interface. What is true is that you have to be pretty "serious" to configure and use a linux environment at all, but that is not a requirement for doing otherwise serious work.

I didn't mean to say that only "serious" users use Linux/Unix/Mac, but that serious users who do use Mac appreciate the power of Terminal.

I'm a "serious user" in the sense that I work all day on a computer, but that's using a computer to do science work, not using a computer to do "computer work"! I wouldn't have the patience to play with Linux or learn its arcane subtleties for using it as my standard OS.

You ought to look into getting common unix programs that you are accustomed to using to see if there are versions you could install for the mac gui -- the way I use emacs and some others directly under Windows without having to use a command shell.

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