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Safari so good

...and I'm back. Back from the woods and not only being wireless but completely web-less too. The twitch is easing now, the rash fading, I'm getting my online fix. Ahhh...

And as a special birthday treat (tomorrow, since you ask) Apple has made its Safari web browser available for PC users.

I've always cast an envious eye at my wife's Mac. Not just the way the whole machine looks, but the way that web pages look. Cleaner, brighter, it seems... and the trick has been replicated in the PC version of Safari.


I really like it. I like the uncluttered lack of borders, the fact it starts up very quickly, and yep most of all the way that websites look on it.

But will it strengthen the lure of the Mac, as Tom Hopkins suggests. Or now that I have the gorgeous Apple's eye view of the web does it mean I don't need one so much?

Yeah, whatever, I want a Mac. Especially once that Leopard OS comes out - looks superb.

If you see AdWords on Open soon or I start renting myself out on banner ads anytime soon you'll know it's all in a good cause...

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Right you are: After 10 years of Apple making mostly rubbish hardware and creaky outdated software, they've finally pretty much got things back on the straight and narrow (although still some quality-assurance issues, rumour has it). I've replaced both my pcs with Macs since last October (quad-core Mac Pro for development and a MacBook Pro for mobility) and am still very impressed. Fast, reliable. Job done.

There's still an issue with MS Office -- Office 2004 was always rubbish and still is. Not only Intel-native, but full of bugs and weirdness. I've not even bothered to install it, and have been getting by brilliantly for my needs -- Word-compatible reports, a few presentations, a bit of adding-up, using the NeoOffice flavour of OpenOffice, which seems to be going from strength to strength. I thought I'd end up running a dual-boot system just to have MS Office, but as it turns out, NeoOffice works Just Fine. No compatibility issues at all, so far.

The single big caveat is that I don't need any kind of corporate-network compatibility -- my network at home is Linux-based and I don't use Exchange, so no problems. Any backend I need I either build myself or find as a webservice.

in fact, were i starting a business from scratch, I'd be hard-pressed to see any reason to look further than Google Apps and a bunch of Macs. Go for it.

FWIW, I'm sure Vista has lots of good back-end stuff added in, but it loks a dog's dinner compared to OS X. In fact, rather ridiculously, every time I see a Vista install, my first thought is that its a nasty Linux theme: it has the same geekboy styling overkill that the worst Linux gnome/kde themes show. So there you go -- and of course with an Intel Mac and Boot Camp or Parallels (which I use) you can have OS X, Windows and Linux all on the same box if you want (I have Linux under Parallels and it works a treat -- great for setting up virtualised test servers)

Get out there and get shopping.

oops that should of course read 'NOT Intel-native' when referring to the horror that is Office 2004 for Mac.

Wow - thanks for that low-down Darrell. I'd say that was a decider for me.

Knowing how devoted to Vaios you were and how choosy you are about your technology that's an emphatic endorsement of Macs...

Beginning my shopping now...

well i remember you asking me ages ago, and me saying that lack of a decentish Office was probably the big No against OS X... I was surprised and impressed when I bought my big fat development machine that NeoOffice, although definitely not a polished retail product, does everything I need, including presentation, well enough and compatibly enough with MS Office that I've yet to hit a snag -- and that was enough for me to replace my Vaio with the MacBook... YMMV, but worst case is you can dual boot with Windows or use Parallels, so either way you're ahead as I see it... if you DO need back-end compatibility with Exchange, as I understand it there's even a plugin for iCal that does group calendaring. But if you're reliant on 100% integration with some corporate backend, double-check with your people before doing it -- and resist as long as you can any suggestion that you use Office 2004 and (horrible) Entourage... ;-)

good luck


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