So I’m assisting a proffesor in a kind off “Intro to Computers” class as part of my GA duties. And I was lucky enough to get this adorable mac girl who has no clue about windows – how refreshing! Usually you get to see long time windows users who can’t deal with their own operating system of choice – here we have a profficient mac user who wants to learn windows just in case she needs it!
In comparison – Windows is a much more difficult OS to learn. It is not intuitive, has many quirks and idiosyncracies, inconsistent interface, hidden features, etc. Mac OS has much more streamlined and uniform GUI and a more even learning curve. And it is a very stable system – the first thing windows users learn is that “computers” are mysterious and will often crash or do wierd things for no reason – and there is no way around this. They grow to accept this as a self evident axiom and hence they tend to shy away from computers in general.
No wonder that this girl seems to be way more mompetent than an average windows user is. First of all – educated and well thought out choice of software and hardware. Second of all, learning her first computer steps on a mac she did not develop a standard windows user trait – the fear of unadvertantly breaking the OS.
Windows is dominant OS for one simple reason – good marketing, and excelent branding! Windows was simply the most sucessfull GUI based OS for the x86 platform and thenks to agressive marketing, affordable price (yup, back in the day windows was the cheeper alternative) and monopolistic practices crushed all the competition in the desktop area. It was not better, it was not easier, it was not universal, or standardized.
Anyway, a mac girl in the class gives me a perfectly valid reason to plug Mac OS and Linux as perfectly acceptable alternatives to winoze. I really hope that this semeste I can get across the massage that: “computer != windows”
It is great to have someone so untainted by windows in class – and I will try to make sure that her lack of familiarity with OS does not disadvantage her in this class. After all why should she be punished for choosing the superior product?
I am a windows user, and I work maintaining windows workstations. Unfortunately this is the OS I grew up with, and the one I know inside out – but I try to separate myself from the OS platform as much as possible. I prefer system independed applications, or ones that have multi system implementations… I’m a java programmer for the simple reason that it allows me to code whatever OS I have underneeth me… It is not that I love Mac OS – it is just that I do not love Windows. I in fact I do not want to pay for Apple hardware – so Linux is my favorite OS platform at the moment. However, some more time must still pass untill I will be as proficient with Linux as I am with doze now…