Condescending Attitude Toward Mac Users

Alright, I’m getting really tired of the general condescending attitude toward Mac users. This post was brought on by Ben’s thing here, (“We won’t dwell on the Mac users; they’re pretty much hopeless and demented anyway.”), but I’ve seen the attitude elsewhere also.

(a) OS X is UNIX
(b) Better UNIX then Windows.
(c) OS X *is* easier to get started with *and* maintain then Linux, even Ubuntu. More expensive, certainly, but much easier by an order of magnitude.

I would recommend OS X over Linux (even Ubuntu) for the average Joe who can afford it. More mainstream software is compatible, things “just work”, and it’s less hassle in general.

Don’t believe me? ‘Ight. Let’s play a word game.

  • MP3/DVD compatibility
  • 3D acceleration
  • Games
  • Microsoft Office
  • Photo manipulation
  • Power management

You can, of course, do all of these things on Linux. However, it is much easier to do them on a Mac. It’s stupid to expect your average Joe to search through a bunch of documentation to get 3D games working. Heck, even Ben hasn’t gotten 3D acceleration working on his laptop. MP3 and DVDs can’t be played by default on Ubuntu and require installation of an illegal (in the US) codec pack. That sort of thing is unheard of on a mainstream desktop PC. I understand this stuff is getting ironed out as we speak, but as of right now, they aren’t.

Photo manipulation with The GIMP still lags behind Photoshop. *cough* CMYK *cough*

Power management is another area Linux lags behind on. My Ubuntu laptop can hibernate, but it stopped waking up after a kernel update several months ago. I’m not alone in this either. Yeah.

As for OpenOffice.org, have you compared it to Microsoft Office 2007? The interface is vastly inferior. Even Office 2003 for Mac scores better in my book. Office 2008 for Mac should pretty sweet, if they do even a fraction of what was accomplished in the Windows version. No, really. I haven’t drunk any Kool-ade, I’m speaking as someone who has studied HIG. Office is bloated and the DOCX format is pretty lame, but it still pwns all competition. OpenOffice.org can’t even display two pages of the same document side by side. Sad, but true.

Also, there isn’t anything that comes even close to OneNote available for Linux. BasKet 1.0 is a step in the right direction, but as a OneNote user, I cringed and put it down after a few attempts to get work done. Tomboy, while a good substitute for the OneNote mini-pad thing, can’t compare to the full program. Ok, yeah, I know, no OneNote for Mac either, but y’know. At least they have notebook view in Word, we don’t even have that.

Really, I love Linux and it’s my primary operating system, but there are many good reasons to use OS X instead.

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10 Responses to “Condescending Attitude Toward Mac Users”


  1. 1 mpiasecki March 18, 2007 at 12:11 am

    I wholeheartedly agree with what you have said. My OS of choice is Linux as well. In all honesty it is becuase of financial reasons with two children running around. I would buy a Mac at the drop of a hat if I could come up with the funds to do so.
    Mac is a great meeting ground between a rock solid operating system and great applications that are regarded the industry standard. Being a graphic designer (or pagemonkey as we call it at work), I really miss having a Mac. It was an old Perfroma 400 running Photoshop 4 and Illustrator 6 but it gave amazing results with its ease of use.

  2. 2 Ben Leggett March 19, 2007 at 12:51 pm

    I’m not dissing Macs persay, just Mac users. Mac OS X is a solid OS.
    Closed source, but still solid and definitely preferable over Windows.

    I’m making fun of Mac users, who really aren’t any more educated than your average user, but consider themselves a higher being simply because they have a flashy OS. It seems like very Mac user that brings their Mac to class spends the whole time playing with widgets, or passing their mouse over the Dock to watch the animation. Rarely do I see them doing any work. Rarely do they know anything about computers. Must don’t even know that Mac OS X is Unix-based. They just think that owning a Mac makes them special. It doesn’t.

    If I had the money, I might buy a Mac. The hardware is beautiful. I might even like the OS. But I have suspicion that I’d wipe the HDD and install Linux on that sucker eventually.

  3. 3 Ben Leggett March 19, 2007 at 1:19 pm

    Egads, the typos in mt lact post are moct enbarrissing.

    Anyway, as to the 3D thing, the point is I could easily get 3D by installing Windows. But I don’t want in Windows. I don’t want it in OS X. I want it in Linux, and Linux alone. I’d much rather forgo it and use Linux than have it in OS X or Windows. And as to the dvd thing, in my personal experience it’s easier to set up in Gentoo than Ubuntu. Yes it’s illegal, but the law is a stupid one that I have no problem breaking. If I want to play dvd’s that I purchased with my own money, I’m going to. I’m no pirate, but I am going to play my dvd’s on whatever system I choose, no matter what anyone says.

  4. 4 Kristian Poul Herkild March 30, 2007 at 12:53 pm

    Weeeeell…

    I agree about the statement being annoying and unreasonable and a lot more, but I won’t use such words publicly.

    But…

    a) OS X is NOT Unix and NEVER will be. It is Posix-compatible to some extent, but it is NOT Unix (which *BSD is) nor a *nix OS like GNU/Linux. OS X is not Unix, *nix, Unix-like or *BSD. It is however somewhat Posix-compatible. But that’s all.

    b) Sure, but Windows is even less Posix-compatible 😉 – and OS X is still not a Unix or even a *nix.

    c) Hardly. Considering the limited hardware and limited hardwaresupport the only reason it feels easier is because the user has fewer options 😉 – let OS X be capable of running on ALL x86 PC’s and you’ll suddenly see OS X as being LESS easy to maintain than MS-DOS 4. The good part of OS X is the NeXTSTEP part and the part that makes it reasonably easy to use.

  5. 5 James April 1, 2007 at 3:13 pm

    a) OS X isn’t Unix-like? I’m sorry, but that’s the first time I’ve ever heard that statement, and I can’t find anything to back it up online. What about Darwin? Isn’t it Posix compatible? I genuinely am curious, please post your reasoning and sources.

    b) I don’t know how much ground Posix covers. Windows has a very horrid security track-record, with millions of viruses and spyware lurking in the background. It also makes it very hard to use the computer as non-admin. At least OS X prompts you before letting badware rampage through your system folder.
    (Vista claims to fix everything, but I’m still a bit skeptical.)

    c) I’m willing to accept that this point might be correct (ignoring your DOS 4 comment), but it *is* easier, regardless.

  6. 6 McBot August 1, 2007 at 12:33 pm

    >a) OS X is NOT Unix and NEVER will be.
    Funny. Since 18.May.2007 it is:
    http://www.opengroup.org/openbrand/register/brand3555.htm

  7. 7 Lazor December 29, 2007 at 10:29 pm

    My brother got a Mac, and he spent about 3 years talking about how great his Mac was. Seriously, Mac users worship their Macs, and act like it demanded that they preach and spread their Mac’s greatness to everyone.

  8. 8 James January 1, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    Lazor, this post was aimed at *NIX users. Many of them (myself included) consider this perfectly valid behavior (minus the worshiping part), especially if you are a Windows user. 😉

  9. 9 Summr7 July 27, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Excuse me? Rarely do we do any work? what mac users are you observing, spoiled 14 year olds? And you say, “In class”- please tell me about anyone that brings their laptop to class not just to distract themselves from the boredom of a teachers lecture. Everyone in class is on Facebook, chatting, or searching the web, despite laptop or OS.
    Plus,”If you had the money,” don’t pretend- with the way you talk about it, we know you KNOW you would by a mac, not only for the sleek poteriors, and plethera of appliances and attachments, but the practically universal compatibility, and the user friendly OS. Don’t diss it til ya try it! And, when you are finally humble enough to crawl your way to the checkout lane, your heart will race, your palms will sweat, you’ll be unable to contain your enthusiasm, and you will be happy. Not just ANY happy, MacHappy!

    But in the meantime, Remember! A condescending attitude does not actually make one taller! 🙂

  10. 10 James October 21, 2009 at 2:29 am

    …said the condescending Mac user.


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