Six weeks after ditching Windows (sorry, Vista!) on my desktop, I've fallen a little in love with my iMac.
It's not that things are that much easier on a Mac, because I don't find that they are. They're just different. And although Macs are supposedly the tools of artistic and visual thinkers, I think the Vista desktop is more attractive and useful than Panther. Certainly, Outlook 2007 is a more colorful and graphically interesting program than the Mac trinity of Mail, iCal, and Address Book (and why, for the sake of consistency, aren't they called iMail, iCal and iAddress?).
There are also many great programs on Windows that I miss.
But Macs seem to work better. My Vista desktop, like all my other Windows machines, used to churn and freeze more a someone making butter in the snow. No matter how souped-up a computer I'd get, there were always inexplicable delays, crashes and incompatibilities. I finally had to accept that I was spending more time troubleshooting and tweaking my computers than I was getting anything done.
So far, my Mac desktop has frozen up a few times, but always recovered perfectly. Switching programs is effortless and no matter how many I have running at the same time, I don't feel the sluggishness I'd so often suffer under Windows. Do Macs allocate memory more efficiently? Beats me.
After six weeks of using my iMac, though, I began to really hate my Windows notebook, which suffered from every infirmity that plagued the other Vista machines I've run. It's just painful to use it.
So, I'm ditching Windows on the my laptop, too.
I'm typing this entry at Barnes and Noble on my shiny new MacBook Air. Even though it has a moderate processor and a slow hard drive, this thing is smooth to groove. I have several programs running - nothing heavy, like Photoshop - but Firefox, Mail, Address Book, iCal, Imagewell, and some utilities like TextExpander, and everything's running beautifully.
I wish the Air was more powerful, and I hate the insane paucity of ports (One USB port, Steve Jobs? Are you kidding me???), but I always like the smallest, lightest computer possible.
I have fourteen days to play with this thing before I decide if I want to keep it. But I'm already a little in love. Not because it's sexy (although it is) and not because it's so tiny (which it isn't) but because it works.
While cleaning the house and wrapping my soon-to-be seven year old's birthday presents, I listened to a couple of shows by The Podcast Brothers. These two guys do a great job of giving you some pretty useful information about starting and running a podcast.
They apparently have a whole new media empire going with workshops, expos, products, free templates – a bunch of good stuff. I haven't made it through their site yet – I've barely gotten started, but it looks like there's a lot to learn there.
I know a bunch of people who podcast – or who want to – and I have to tell you: It's not as easy as it looks. As we've seen on The Podcast Network, a lot of people come into it all fired up and ready, but when they don't find an audience of thousands – or even hundreds – in the first few weeks, they give up and stop production.
It's called "podfading."
On one of the show's I listened to today, The Podcast Brothers talked about how if you're going to call something a "show," you're expected to produce it with some regularity. I agree. My co-host on The Digital Photography Show and I break our humps to get that show out every week because we feel we've made a promise to our listeners – as well as to our sponsors – to provide them with fresh and timely content.
So, if you're interested in learning more about podcasting, check out The Podcast Brothers here.