Sunday, April 23, 2006

A Mac, Mac world

Making the move I've been going through some issues at work that I won't go into here - what's relevant is that my time is less than it was. I'm happy to be back blogging again, but it's a fact posting is going to be spotty going forward. That is, unless my muse doinks me about the head and sets my pants on fire. That's the less happy part of this post. The happy part is the buried lede that starts here. Rebecca and I caved into iCulture in a big way this weekend and bought an iMac. I'll confess to wanting one in the worst way since before Christmas. Heck, my curiosity goes back to the OS X rollout. Anyway, it's here, I'm sharing it with Rebecca, and it's beautiful as all get out. The screen is fabulous and the built in speakers are surprisingly good. It's amazingly less cluttered than a PC, and that's with a wired keyboard and mouse. We are only just beginning to understand what Bluetooth and Airport could do. I'm more than a little at sea with it. It's the first Mac I've ever owned, and I haven't used one since I used once since a workplace 10 + years ago that had a couple of decrepit Mac IIs. We got it set up on our network and on the Internet without any trouble. I managed to install Firefox without breaking anything. I did gave Safari a look but it does not impress. I also managed to import all my files - including a fair sized iTunes collection - from a DVD I burned on the not-so-old HP PC that Rebecca is now using. I did loose all the ratings associated with my music, but hey... Oh, and my HP printer does not have Mac drivers available. We were lucky enought to get a deal at London Drugs where they threw in a free Canon multifunction and that works fine. It is taking me longer to do things I could do with my eyes closed in XP, but that's not the Mac's fault. I'm learning to walk here. Firefox is working dandy and between that and iTunes I'll get a lot done. I do need to replace some of the more handy tools that have no Mac counterpart and I'm hoping somebody here can help me out. High on my list is a composition tool for blogger, to replace w.bloggar. Any suggestions? We have Pages 2 but I'm not aware of any hook in to blogger like there is for MS Word. I'm also undecided about .Mac and am not sure what that offers me as a a blogger, if anything. Speaking of Office applications, I was using happily Open Office on the XP machine but see to my dismay that Open Office does not yett support Intel based Macs. I'm not a big spreadsheet user, but is there anything? I mean, besides Appleworks? That looks like it's about to be discontintued. MS Office for Mac is a no go. It's way over the top for my needs and budget. I'm also puzzed by the behavior of the "home" and "end" keys as I'm typing this. They take me to the top and bottom of the document instead of to the beginning and end of a line. Can I change that? That's annoying and I can't see any way to do it in preferences (unless I'm blind; it's happened). The built in camera sure is cool, though. Here are some sites I've been visiting to psyche myself up for this. Want to add to this list?

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