Thursday, April 06, 2006

But is it really a Mac?

News today that Apple will be providing what hackers have already been able to do: to run Windows XP on an Intel-based Mac.

While techies may like the challenge of getting computers to do new things, I think we really need to deal here with a more important existential issue: is an Apple-manufactured computer running Windows really a Mac?

To put this in context, some years ago I was a devoted Mac user at work. My last Mac had an Intel Pentium chip inside it that I could switch to and boot with the flick of a function key. The idea for me would be that I could have the best of both worlds.

However, it proved not to be. Switching between them was onerous and in the end it convinced me that most of the applications that I used for work were Windows-based. I left the Mac behind.

At home, however, this is all a different story. A Mac sits prominently in the kitchen area and is never used for word processing, power point or spreadsheets. It is all web surfing, movie editing, our stereo and of course blogging.

My point is that if it had Windows XP, it would be of less value for those things. It is the software that maketh the Mac.


Anonymous said...

Could this perhaps be a step towards having a Mac OS in which you can run windows apps pretty much natively?

Or perhaps John C. Dvorak's claim is correct - Apple will eventually move to the Windows OS.

rabee said...

They released this software, because hackers recently discovered a way of booting Windows.

This is the first step in unbundling the Hardware/OS.

The process will be complete when someone figures out how to run OSX on a Dell (well they’ve almost done it).

It all started with the move to Intel. I don’t know what they have in mind.

a) Why would software developers now develop for OSX?

b) Do they really want to compete with Dell?

c) Do they want their arty-farty customers to realize that there is a difference between hardware and software and that they have a choice?

d) Eventually, they will have to release OSX for any Intel machine (i.e., tell us how to install it). Are they prepared for the support calls and the lack of OSX drivers for common non-apple hardware?