Tuesday, August 16, 2005
Apples to Oranges
G, a consultant that we do business with (he was the one that got us involved in Project White Elephant, which is actually going quite well now that the servers are configured correctly) dropped off a Mac mini (at a price just a bit lower than the going street price) with the idea that we might be able to use it as a low-cost server platform. it's small, low power (although not as low as a Cobalt RaQ) and underneath the Mac exterior is BSD Unix.
I have the unit at home right now, playing around with it, and I must say, the software is slick and the GUI is nice (although I've already come across one quirk, and the fact that you have to drag the CD to the trash to eject is a bit … disconcerting to one not used to it).
The dock (the Apple equivilent of Window's Task Bar) is better behaved when hidden—there's a crucial half-second or so pause before it will pop up, unlike the Window's Task Bar which will pop up if you get anywhere near it. Although having to look for the little arrow at the bottom of the dock icon to see which programs are running is a pain. Small price I guess.
And the keyboard sucks! I have an actual, honest-to-God Mac keyboard for the thing, and what I wouldn't give to use an actual, honest-to-God IBM keyboard on this thing—the stupid Mac keyboard lies flat!
In fact, as I was typing this up (using this XXXXXXXX XXXXXXX Mac keyboard) Spring was admiring (or rather, drooling over) the Mac mini—
HOW COOL IS THAT?
(Forgive me—I'm not used to Macs as you might be able to tell). Pressing F9 shrinks all the windows on the desktop, giving you a thumbnail view of everything, F10 shrinks the windows of the current application in focus, and F11 hides all the open windows on the desk top.
Okay, I'm beginning to drool over this thing now.
Get a decent keyboard for this thing, and a development system, and I just might keep this thing for myself …