I've been using a Mac, I must say I'm dissapointed.

edited April 2007 in Chit chat
I have been using an Apple Macintosh to do some video editing this week. I also trialed it on other simple tasks such as web browsing and Java applet deployment.

I was using one of our university's new 20" Intel Core2 Duo IMacs.

I must say that I was very dissapointed.

It hard to use, yes it looks good and it's minimalistic, but to do even the simplest of things seems increadibly cryptic.

With any other non Windows OS it has not taken me long to feel my way round, but with these new Macs I had a lot of trouble.
Post edited by Scottie_uk on
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Comments

  • edited April 2007
    Perhaps the so called "mac experience" is over-rated? ;)
  • edited April 2007
    Without wanting to turn this into an overheated Mac-Win debate; what exactly was 'incredibly cryptic'?

    The Mac OS is indeed more 'minimalistic', so perhaps you were expecting more feedback?

    When I'm using a Windows machine I can get highly annoyed by the fact that Windows is giving me feedback about everything all the time. For instance, when I insert a memory stick, I can get a dozen messages on screen about 'Found new hardware', 'That the hardware is recognized' and that the new hardware is called 'Bladibla'.

    It seems like Windows is always trying to tell me that it is *really* working and trying its utmost best to let everything happen. I don't care about that. On a Mac I only get a message when something is wrong (which doesn't happen that much, thankyouverymuch), and that's all I need.
  • edited April 2007
    Sorry ... but ... I dislike OS X incredibly much ... I prefer OS 9 (minimum and all the way up to X but excluding it). I think the reason why I like 9 is because it reminds me of an uberAtari :-D (and no, I shan't mention the Amiger :evil:).

    Skarpo
    :-)
  • edited April 2007
    As a mostly windows user (no damn choice, work reasons) I enjoy the time I spend on my mini mac. Yes some things are counter-intuative on a Mac (for a windows user) but after a few minutes messing about I can usually work out how to do something. The best indicator must be how little I have had to look at help files. Generally I would say OSX is easier to use than windows.

    ADJB
  • edited April 2007
    If you let us Mac users know what simple things you're trying to do, we might know a non-cryptic way of achieving it. The usual stumbling block is that OS X and Windows are different. As Andrew says, if you're used to the Windows way of doing things you might take a bit of time to figure out the Mac way.
  • edited April 2007
    I'd say the thing is that using a Mac isn't that different to a Windows PC these days, as the two have evolved into something that's quite similar. Ten years ago (and especially twenty years ago) you'd get a very different experience from using them.

    Give it another ten years and the only way you'll spot a Mac is by the branding, I reckon.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    Plenty of studies have shown that if you take users with no previous experience they get on better with Macs than PCs but if you're used to doing things one way changing can be a culture shock.

    I agree. My first experience with the Mac was indeed a bit of a shock. No right-click! Must say I'm quite used to right-clicking for context sensitive options. Anyway, after having used it a bit I did find it easy enough but nothing extraordinarily different that would make me a mac convert. Perhaps as matt_b said, the lines are blurring...
    On the PC I miss having the menu bar in a sensible place,

    Aren't they?
    being able to put my files where I want to put them (not where Windows wants to put them),

    Didn't understand this one. What do you mean by "put them"? Visually appear in a certain place within a folder perhaps? You can do so by turning off auto arrange by right-clicking.
    being able to drag documents onto application icons in the dock (I have my task bar set up as a dock on my Windows PC), among other things.

    Again, perhaps I misunderstood this but you can drag docs/files on to apps in the task bar.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    Everyone knows I'm a dyed-in-the-wool Mac user so I don't expect anyone to give any credance to what I'm about to say. With that caveat out of the way:

    How long have you been using Windows? If you find the Mac hard then I suspect you've been using Windows for at least a few years. Plenty of studies have shown that if you take users with no previous experience they get on better with Macs than PCs but if you're used to doing things one way changing can be a culture shock.

    I started on the Mac back in 1992, and I have to say, I prefer windows. I love the fact it's more supported and a hell of a lot cheaper. Simple as that.
    To date there is only one PC function that I miss on the Mac - and that's the ability to resize windows from any edge.

    On the PC I miss having the menu bar in a sensible place, being able to open folders while dragging, being able to put my files where I want to put them (not where Windows wants to put them), being able to drag documents onto application icons in the dock (I have my task bar set up as a dock on my Windows PC), among other things.

    Menu bar in a sensible place? Like having it at the side or the top? You can, you just drag the taskbar to where you want it (as long as it's unlocked). The rest can be done in windows too. I've never known it not to.

    One thing I despise about the Mac is the fact they STILL only give a one button mouse as standard. I know you can go and buy a different one but please! The scrollwheel and two extra buttons makes life soo much easier!

    I don't understand the classic argument that Max users give - the "Mac is best for desktop publishing and video editing" one.

    None of them seem to realise that there is a wealth of software to do the job brilliantly - pretty much all the ones that are available for Mac are on the PC - and then some! The only one really missing on the PC is Final Cut Pro but there are others on the PC that do the same, if not more, than FCP anyway.

    Now don't get me wrong. I don't hate the Mac, I would rather stick with a system that can do exactly the same job for a fraction of the cost.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    The sensible place for the menu bar is at the top of the screen, not at the top of the window. GUI experts are all agreed on this.

    Works for me. :)
    On the Mac you can drag an Application to anywhere you like and it will still work, and so will the shortcuts to it.

    Ah. Wasn't aware of that. Nice feature indeed!
    In Windows you cannot open a Word document by dragging it onto the Word icon in the taskbar. You have to open Word and then drag it into the Word window.

    The task bar lists open applications only anyway. Perhaps you mean the Quick Launch bar? Well, you can drag and drop files on the icons if the app supports such a feature. I don't have Word but I could open music files by dragging to WMP icon, html files by dragging to SeaMonkey and IE icons, etc. However, openOffice doesn't support this apparently so couldn't drag and open on that icon however.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »

    but nothing that is as wrongheaded as clicking START to shut down (still there in Vista - just choose the classic theme).

    This is a widely claimed 'fact' but it actually isn't true. The reason 'Shut Down' ended up on the Start menu is because, during usability testing for Windows 95, when asked to shut down the computer most users clicked 'Start' and tried to find the option. [The Old New Thing, Raymond Chen, Page 1]

    lt may sound stupid but that doesn't make it the wrong way to do it.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    ...
    In Windows you cannot open a Word document by dragging it onto the Word icon in the taskbar. You have to open Word and then drag it into the Word window.

    Keyword: Double-click.

    ;-)
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    On the Mac you can drag an Application to anywhere you like and it will still work, and so will the shortcuts to it. With Windows application paths are hard-coded. Drag an application somewhere else and it's pot luck if it still works or not, and the shortcuts certainly won't.

    Windows has been capable of tracking shortcuts since Windows 2000. Moving executables isn't always feasible, but that is a small price to pay for all the interoperability and automation capabilities offered by building applications using COM objects, in my opinion at least.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    Yes, the MENU bar. Not the TASK bar. Having a menu bar at the top of a window is stupid. You only need to see the menu bar for the window you have open and it should always appear where you expect to find it - at the top of the screen.

    My mistake. Just misunderstood what you meant.

    It is best for real publishing because it is easier to get the colour set up on a Mac for the pre-press process. There's little difference in the DTP software these days. It is best for high end video editing because Final Cut Pro HD and Avid's HD video suite are not available on the PC.

    Looking at Avid's website of products, the DNA, Media Composer, Xpress and Liquid families are all Windows compatible. Ironically, their next family - Newscutter - is NOT mac compatible at all. And as I said, Final Cut Pro is not on PC, but there is Adobe Premiere Pro and Sony Vegas that easily matches FCP for any of it's abilities. Again, I see no reason why Macs are "better" for any particular job.

    PCs are a rip off. Go do a price comparisson between a Mac and a Dell with the same CPU, RAM, etc. Then add in the price for all the stuff you get free with the Mac (firewall, iLife etc). Depending on the set-up you get you could save hundreds by buying a Mac. In all cases you will pay less for the Mac than the Dell.

    Yes there's no bare-bones Mac, but who really wants a bare-bones system these days? And the Mini is hardly expensive is it?

    Again, i would have to disagree. The sheer cost of a Mac is still more than the equivalent spec of a PC (a Mac Mini would set you back around ?400 (a quick look at Amazon there - not a set in stone price, just an average), and that doesn't include a monitor - a PC with a higher spec AND monitor can be bought from a high street store for ?300-?350), and the cost of software is really the same on both, so I'm not quite sure where you went with that. I still would save money by going down the PC route - especially if I then in the future wanted to upgrade parts too.
  • edited April 2007
    Scottie_uk wrote: »
    I have been using an Apple Macintosh to do some video editing this week.

    You can use a MSX Pioneer Palcom PX-7
    for video editing. :) :grin: :o (MSX computers have a Z80 cpu inside)

    There's one on Ebay now:
    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/MSX-Pioneer-Palcom-PX-7-VERY-RARE_W0QQitemZ140101817511QQcmdZViewItem
  • edited April 2007
    Again, i would have to disagree. The sheer cost of a Mac is still more than the equivalent spec of a PC (a Mac Mini would set you back around ?400 (a quick look at Amazon there - not a set in stone price, just an average), and that doesn't include a monitor - a PC with a higher spec AND monitor can be bought from a high street store for ?300-?350), and the cost of software is really the same on both, so I'm not quite sure where you went with that. I still would save money by going down the PC route - especially if I then in the future wanted to upgrade parts too.

    I've got a mini, and part of the equation is the form factor. Mine has to fit in a small space under the TV and run near silently even when the ambient temperature is at Indian summer levels (38-39C at the moment). Will a ?300-?350 box from the high street meet my needs? I'm not too bothered about upgrades as I just need it to play music and movies. It's got enough grunt for my Doctor Who torrents, so I'm happy.

    There have been many price comparisons at the higher end posted on various forums. If you spec out a Dell workstation to match a Mac tower, the prices are pretty comparable. The Mac can even come out cheaper.
  • edited April 2007
    AOwen: Under windows, if you have word running (but minimised) then all you have to do is drag the icon down to the word task-item, hover for a second and then word will open. You then drop the icon onto word itself.

    I find that very simple, but a lot of people don't realise you can do it.

    As for the whole mac/pc argument, Charlie Brooker summed it up very nicely indeed here.

    The comments are probably the best bit of that article - macwankers completely missing the point, as usual :-)

    D.
  • edited April 2007
    Dunny wrote: »
    Under windows, if you have word running (but minimised) then all you have to do is drag the icon down to the word task-item, hover for a second and then word will open. You then drop the icon onto word itself.

    I find that very simple, but a lot of people don't realise you can do it.

    But why have that 'hover for a second' step. If you try and drop a document on a task-item, Windows pops up a message saying, and I paraphrase, 'I know what you want to do, but I'm not going to do it'. It's done that since NT4 and I think it is a shining example of poor usability. Why can't it go the extra mile and just do what the user wanted?
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    PCs are a rip off. Go do a price comparisson between a Mac and a Dell with the same CPU, RAM, etc. Then add in the price for all the stuff you get free with the Mac (firewall, iLife etc). Depending on the set-up you get you could save hundreds by buying a Mac. In all cases you will pay less for the Mac than the Dell.

    Tell me...

    Why, in the name of Yitshak Hitler-Cohen (the Fuhrer's Jewish love-child), does a manky old game like Sim City 4 cost forty quid for the Mac version, when the PC version is available for a fiver in any bargain bin?
  • edited April 2007
    Arjun wrote: »
    Perhaps the so called "mac experience" is over-rated? ;)
    next time im flashed in the park by some durty old hasbeen ill let you know if its over rated or not
    Professional Mel-the-Bell Simulator................"So realistic, I found myself reaching for the Kleenex King-Size!" - Richard Darling
  • edited April 2007
    ajmoss wrote: »
    Tell me...

    Why, in the name of Yitshak Hitler-Cohen (the Fuhrer's Jewish love-child), does a manky old game like Sim City 4 cost forty quid for the Mac version, when the PC version is available for a fiver in any bargain bin?

    Yes, Windows wins hands down on the gaming front. But shouldn't we all be playing twenty plus year old games on our trusty emulators? Seriously, this is why I am looking forward to getting an x86 Mac, I'll be able to boot into Windows for the games.
  • edited April 2007
    JamesW wrote: »
    There have been many price comparisons at the higher end posted on various forums. If you spec out a Dell workstation to match a Mac tower, the prices are pretty comparable. The Mac can even come out cheaper.

    This I am genuinely surprised about, because anytime I've been in the market there has been a world of difference in price. But I gather this price comparison is with the bleeding edge stuff where prices are still very high. I *never* buy bleeding edge because 6 months down the line it's at much more reasonable prices. With the gear that I tend to buy, there is a rather largeish premium for going mac.
  • edited April 2007
    JamesW wrote: »
    But why have that 'hover for a second' step. If you try and drop a document on a task-item, Windows pops up a message saying, and I paraphrase, 'I know what you want to do, but I'm not going to do it'. It's done that since NT4 and I think it is a shining example of poor usability. Why can't it go the extra mile and just do what the user wanted?

    Because Windows 3.1 didn't have a task bar.

    The result of which is that the drag and drop implementation in Windows applications was never designed to cope with having things dropped onto a minimized window. And there are lots of applications where it really matters whereabouts on the main window you drop something.
  • edited April 2007
    JamesW wrote: »
    If you spec out a Dell workstation to match a Mac tower, the prices are pretty comparable. The Mac can even come out cheaper.

    That's because 'comparable' Dell systems usually are Precision Workstations and they have traditionally been just as overpriced as Macs.
  • edited April 2007
    JamesW wrote: »
    If you let us Mac users know what simple things you're trying to do, we might know a non-cryptic way of achieving it. The usual stumbling block is that OS X and Windows are different. As Andrew says, if you're used to the Windows way of doing things you might take a bit of time to figure out the Mac way.

    I've always been a Windows user and I still have my newly built one. I wanted a latop so I could sit in the front room and surf the net, so I ended up getting an Intel Macbook, so I could see what OSX was like and if need be install XP on it. Imust say the user inteface is ok, but I don't prefer it to XP.
    Why doesn't the cross [X] close a program? I still have to quit all programs indevidually.
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    Web browsing and Java applet deployment are basically platform independent so perhaps not the best way to test the Mac.

    I would say that was an excelent way to compare and contrast the two systems.

    I was having trouble today using Java on the Mac OSX. I was testing a Java application that I have authored. It would not run on the Mac, so I wanted to check the Java console. It should have been so easy, I ended spending quite a long time trying to figure this out.

    Anyhow, what saved my bacon was the Safari brower witch was the one app I actually liked. By simply switching on the java console in the java options I could access the console by referencing my Jar file via a JNLP web start file. A bit of a fudge but it worked.

    Why does MAC OSX ship with Java JRE 1.3 Thats yonks old. The one I was on was updated to 1.4. I do not think that the MAC os works with Java 1.5 does it? Thats why my program would not work on a MAC. It was a Major Minor versioning error.

    When comparing Final Cut Pro with Adobe Premiere Pro on my two year old Athlon 2.8Ghz I found no real advantage as far as power and editing facilities go. The speed of video rendering from DV stream to AVI as also was not noticably quicker.

    I found its mouse confusing. It did seem to have a right click although the mouse gives no visual indication of a left and right button. The right click seemed only to work half of the time.

    When using get info to get details of files, I often had to click this option two maybee three times to get a responce. Yes I did give it time for it do appear, 20 seconds should be enough right?

    I didn't like the way it deleted files, Send To Trash does not sound intuative to me. Trash is an american word so it may sound more intuative to the Americans. Why not just use delete.

    Some windows like the Mac Compresson can not be closed, just minimised?? Why??


    There is probably more but it's late, I cant think time for bed.

    Andrew.
    Calling all ASCII Art Architects Visit the WOS Wall of Text and contribute: https://www.yourworldoftext.com/wos
  • edited April 2007
    aowen wrote: »
    Personally I find the PC way of doing things cryptic. There are some well documented idosyncracies in Mac OS X, but nothing that is as wrongheaded as clicking START to shut down (still there in Vista - just choose the classic theme).
    AndyC wrote: »
    This is a widely claimed 'fact' but it actually isn't true. The reason 'Shut Down' ended up on the Start menu is because, during usability testing for Windows 95, when asked to shut down the computer most users clicked 'Start' and tried to find the option. [The Old New Thing, Raymond Chen, Page 1]

    lt may sound stupid but that doesn't make it the wrong way to do it.

    Here is another way of looking at it - by clicking START to shut the PC down, you are STARTing the shut-down process, thus having shut-down on the start menu is completely valid. Something that clearly went over the heads of all those people who documented this as idiosyncratic. :D
  • edited April 2007
    CUCHULAINN wrote: »
    Why doesn't the cross [X] close a program? I still have to quit all programs indevidually.

    It's always been that way. The [X] closes windows, and unlike Windows with a capital W, OS X doesn't quit the app along with the last window. There are exceptions to this - single dialog apps tend to quit when you close their window. That's determined by the programmer, so there is some inconsistency here. To quit an app I tend to use ?-Q (Apple-Q for those with deficient fonts :P), which seems a bit more intuitive than Alt-F4.
  • edited April 2007
    Scottie_uk wrote: »
    I would say that was an excelent way to compare and contrast the two systems.

    Why does MAC OSX ship with Java JRE 1.3 Thats yonks old. The one I was on was updated to 1.4. I do not think that the MAC os works with Java 1.5 does it? Thats why my program would not work on a MAC. It was a Major Minor versioning error.
    Mondas:~ james$ java -version
    java version "1.5.0_07"
    Java(TM) 2 Runtime Environment, Standard Edition (build 1.5.0_07-164)
    Java HotSpot(TM) Client VM (build 1.5.0_07-87, mixed mode, sharing)
    
    Run software update on that machine! (Apple Menu->Software Update...)
    I found its mouse confusing. It did seem to have a right click although the mouse gives no visual indication of a left and right button. The right click seemed only to work half of the time.
    I've not used that mouse. I've never liked the default mice on any machine, Windows or Mac OS. I must admit the idea of a no button mouse with two zones for left and right click doesn't really appeal to me. I use a multi-button Microsoft mouse on my Mac.
    When using get info to get details of files, I often had to click this option two maybee three times to get a responce. Yes I did give it time for it do appear, 20 seconds should be enough right?
    Something wrong there, even on my underpowered G4 mini it pops up pretty quickly at the first attempt. Can't really tell what's up without seeing the machine . Do you get the same delay if you select the file and press Apple-I ?
    I didn't like the way it deleted files, Send To Trash does not sound intuative to me. Trash is an american word so it may sound more intuative to the Americans. Why not just use delete.
    You're not deleting them though, you are moving the files to the Trash where they will stay until you empty it. I agree that Trash is an Americanism. In the distant past the name was localised to 'Wastebasket' in English English. Trash took over the English speaking world back with Mac OS 8.6.
    Some windows like the Mac Compresson can not be closed, just minimised?? Why??
    Sounds like the author of Mac Compression disabled the close button. I'd be asking 'Why??' too!
  • edited April 2007
    JamesW wrote: »
    ...To quit an app I tend to use ?-Q (Apple-Q for those with deficient fonts :P), which seems a bit more intuitive than Alt-F4.

    Hey ... I have a question ... what's the actual name for the key with the quadruple loop?
     _   _
    |_|_|_|
     _|_|_
    |_| |_|
    

    Seeing as I LOVE maps I do remember this (incorrectly?) as the old international sign for Tourist Information ... does it have anything to do with information on the sMack?

    Skarpo
    :-?
  • edited April 2007
     _   _
    |_|_|_|
     _|_|_
    |_| |_|
    

    ^^ Top ASCII work there! It's called the 'Command' key, and the symbol is a Swedish tourist information sign. The prototype Mac used an Apple logo in all the menus. This attracted the wrath of Jobs, so the icon designer, Susan Kare, had to come up with something else. That something else was the Swedish campsite sign. More information here.
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