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Slightly Off Topic - Mac Notebook for new College student
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jimineer
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:08 pm    Post subject: Slightly Off Topic - Mac Notebook for new College student Reply with quote

Hi all,

sorry for the off-topic post, but it seems that many of you fellow mini owners also own laptops. My daughter will be starting her second semester of college and I need to get her a notebook. She has a top of the line Windows desktop at home. I would really like to get her into a mac laptop, but I'm not sure she would make the transition.

I guess my question is: for any you college students or recent grads in the forum that use macs, did you find it a disadvantage using a mac in college when so many others, including the universitys are usings PCs? By disadvantage I mean not runninig MS Word, Excel, etc.
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i can't speak from experience but my girlfriend goes to columbia college and i happened to be there last week when 4 of her girlfriends came over (yes!) and began working on a project together. now 1 didnt bring her pc laptop, another had a hp laptop...and the other 3 all had macbooks. so its pretty diverse, i am 21 yrs old and i've used pcs my whole but just switched to mac this year and i love it, screw windows as far as i'm concerned, lol.

i do see your dilemma,but with the new intel chipsets it is possible to run windows on a mac via boot camp or parallels desktop, so that should take care of any compatibility issues.

my honest opinion, get a mac...maybe someday the rest of the world will wise up too haha....til then there's the bootcamp option.
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kbulava
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

if your daughter is anything like my girlfriend though u'll have to show her how to use it a few times....but it's worth it as opposed to the trouble windows has security wise
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mrchowmein
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 11:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depends, if all shes gonna do is surf the net and write a few papers, then shes not gonna have real problem. But if shes a science student who needs to do research and needs to use specific programs designed for Windows, then the Mac might serve less. Of course you could run Bootcamp or Parallels. If she needs to run Windows program, I would just get some $600 cheap-o-dell than to run $2000+ Bootcamped Mac. Think about it this way, shes probably gonna trash that computer in a year or two anyways. But if you want to indoctrinate her with a Mac go for it because there is no advantage of a Mac in terms of the software or compatibility she needs.

Im not trying to bash on the Mac, I use one, but we all need to face the facts that Macs have less software offerings.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Whatever you decide, make sure you buy her one of these. Wink
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


for me it would be a real pain if not for Boot Camp. cause everything at the school is Windows XP stuff. they didnt even have Office for Mac or anything other than Windows stuff.

there were a couple of guys in one of my classes that had their laptops with Ubuntu Linux. and well for the most part they were ook because they could do a lot of things the open source way. but i was kind of in a rut. because theres no Cobol or Visual Basics compilers for OSX nor a Mac version of Microsoft Visio. so i have to have Windows XP installed to do those things.

but from having the MacBook the transition has been alot smoother for me. because i have XP on my Mac Mini so i have the Mini as my main system for school stuff. and use OSX on the Macbook, but have to use XP on my Macbook for when i am not at home.

so it all kinda depends on what courses they are taking.
what i can say. is that XP runs really well on a MacBook.
so I think she will be ok as long as you install Windows XP as a secondary OS.


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offa_broadway
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would go the MacBook option. If she really needs to run Windows programs, she can always BootCamp or run Parallels. She'll be able to organize her photos and life stuff way better using iLife. She can still run MS Office without needing Windows. And if her college/university has an open wi-fi network for student access to the Internet, security is a vital concern, especially if she has term papers and such stored on the machine. The worst thing in the world is when you crash a Windows system in the middle of an essay due the next day, only to find out you can't re-boot it and you're horribly, irrevocably screwed. Seen it, been there, done that. Makes a horrible excuse for the teacher. I can almost guarantee that won't happen on a Mac. Not only are they more internet secure, but they are loads more stable.

Yeah, you pay more than you would buying a $600 Acer, but you get what you pay for. I won't tell you how many students I had come back to my computer/electronics store last year for warranty repairs because of failed power supplies, keyboards, batteries, and the like on those babies.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I go to Brown and we seem to have a significant number of Mac users. I would say it wouldn't be a problem to get her a Mac, but if she's not that computer savvy, especially if the Mac is new to her, it's probably easier to get her a PC. Switching in an environment where there isn't someone to be able to SHOW her things when she needs to will make things a problem sometimes. Since most computer users use Windows, they can easily help each other out and share tips and stuff.

I think you should see her school's position on a Mac, and if they support them, buy her one and hope that other people there use Macs too. If the school doesn't support it, then it probably isn't a good idea unless you want to provide tech support at odd hours of the night.
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Donut
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 2:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


well if you want to go with a MacBook because of the hardware. then you could still get one for her. just install BootCamp and Windows XP for her . and show her how to switch when she turns the system on.

if she likes OSX then great. but if she isnt much for change. then she can have a great laptop and just use XP as the default OS upon boot.

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hackersmovie
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 2:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would buy the Macbook. My girlfriend just went back to college and I bought her a Macbook, no problems, and doesn't need XP!
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Pleiades
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 2:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I guess my question is: for any you college students or recent grads in the forum that use macs, did you find it a disadvantage using a mac in college when so many others, including the universitys are usings PCs? By disadvantage I mean not runninig MS Word, Excel, etc.

Disadvantage? Office is available for the Mac, and has been for umpteen years. Problem solved Smile

Out here on the left coast, Macs are a solid 40% of the students' laptops.

For non-technical majors, writing papers, using the internet, creating powerpoint presentations, etc are all just fine on the Mac, no real need to use a Windows machine there, since it's fairly generic usage. My girlfriend is a Feminist Studies major, and has never had a need for a non-Mac laptop. Almost all of her computer use is for research, writing papers, communication or creating presentations.

For technical majors (and by technical, I mean majors using computers very often, or directly), it depends. Graphic design and art students should use Macs, no questions asked. CAD/CAM, architecture should probably stick to Windows, as the software that's prevalent there is generally Windows based. Finance, business, computer science, information science, biology, physics, mathematics, and any other computer dependent major you'll have to evaluate what software they use, and what their fellow students are using.

And as many other members have mentioned, worse comes to worst, she can always boot up in Windows if you get her an Intel based Mac.
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 14, 2006 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You said you have a mac now? Why don't you sit her down with your mac and get her comfortable with OSX before you go out and buy her anything?

If she's good with technology, she should pick it up in no time.

My mom recently switched from a pc to a core solo mini. I just let her play around with my mini, told her where the Apple Store is and she has never looked back. She only uses it for word processing, power point, and the internet, so she's had no problem switching at all. If she can do it, anyone can.
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jimineer
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 16, 2006 9:18 pm    Post subject: Thanks for the response Reply with quote

Thank you all for your inputs on the subject. I am still undecided but I'll let you what I end up getting.

My biggest fear though, is that she drops her cell phone and iPod on a regular basis - they look like crap now but seem to work. Don't think a laptop would hold up as well. May end up buying her a cheapie for that reason.

Anyway, thanks and Happy Holidays to everyone!
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raspooten
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 2:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Thanks for the response Reply with quote

jimineer wrote:
...May end up buying her a cheapie for that reason.

Anyway, thanks and Happy Holidays to everyone!


Check the refurbed MacBooks at the Apple site. There were some as low as $799.
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 25, 2006 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would recommend a MacBook. They are strong, durable, and perfect for college students!

you could get some more opinions and info at 123macbook.com
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