The lone PC in Raleigh


#1

Last week I had the pleasure of attending the Raleigh area Ruby users
Meetup.
It was very interesting and very informative.

I did feel a bit out of place when we noticed that of the 11-12 people
there, I was the only one with a PC laptop. The rest were shiny macs.

Ah well, I need to replace this thing soon, and now that BootCamp is
out, I really have no more excuses. This way I can test against most of
the major browser/OS combos on the same machine!

Still, I wonder what it is about Rails and Macs.

_Kevin


#2

I got a Powerbook recently and thought it was awesome at first -
everything’s already built in, everything just works, great hardware,
lots of great software, no crapware (like all the AOL et al stuff Dell
installs). But I think I’m in a bit of that adjusting-phase funk:
Getting used to fewer keys (no backspace, page up/down home/end keys);
getting used to more keys (fn, ctrl, alt/option, apple/clover thingy,
eject); mouse that’s too slow (had to install MS Intellipoint); feeling
more isolated because of less available software, or lagging/kludgy
software (Open Office). But I hear this phase passes :).

Joe


#3

Joe,

I think you should look at your Powerbook a little closer, as the delete
key
works just like backspace and page up and down are on the arrow keys, as
well as the home/end keys. Also, why use OpenOffice when you can buy MS
Office for Mac? I have felt no lose moving from a PC to a Mac, you just
have to figure out the name conversions of a few things.

John


#4

Not interested in buying MS Office - I don’t use office stuff much (just
spreadsheets), have OO files, and don’t wanna give any more money to MS.
Neo Office seems to do what I need (OO version 1.x). OO 2 apparently
works on Mac, but installing X looks like more trouble than it’s worth.

Yeah, fn+arrow keys does paging, I found out. Ah, just figured out
fn+delete=backspace. Cool. Seems like the Mac’s ctrl and apple keys
could be combined. Still haven’t figured out why there are two enter
keys.

Joe


#5

Hi Joe,

I just switched a couple of weeks ago as well. Other than my left hand
cooking while the machine’s plugged in, I’m pretty happy with it. I
know I can take it in for a replacement but I’m waiting for them to
sort out all the issues before I do that.

One thing I’ve been playing with is Parallels which allows your to run
windows in a … window. So far I’ve only tried Explorer which worked
great. At $50 it’s a no-brainer. I also installed Debian on Parallels.
At one point, I had all three OSes running on the same machine at the
same time! The Mac is definitely THE developer machine these days.


#6

On Mon, 17 Apr 2006, Joe wrote:

Still haven’t figured out why there are two enter keys.

There aren’t – there’s a return key and an enter key, and the return
key generates an enter when chorded with fn.

But what’s the difference?

What’s supposed to happen is that the Enter key is used to commit or end
a
modal interface, while return is to let you type in more than one line.

For example, if you had a program that had a textarea – let’s say,
order
comments – and a button to Save the order, the return key should let
you
type multiline comments. But enter is bound to the Save key, so you can
be in anywhere in the form and hit enter and the form is dismissed with
the default action.

The reality is this distinction is rarely if ever followed (eg, Apple
Remote Desktop 2 doesn’t do it).

–Jim


#7

Sounds like you got a MacBook Pro ;). The ones I checked out at the
Apple store were REALLY hot to the touch when playing video. I debated
getting one, but figured I’d avoid the first generation issues (heat,
whining sound, screen flicker at low light, etc.), save money, have more
slots (modem, pc card, s-video, etc.) and have more vertical screen
resolution (60 pixels more).

Joe


#8

One other thing :wink: - I hate the PowerBook’s half-sized arrow and
function keys.

Joe


#9

Jim Zajkowski wrote:

On Mon, 17 Apr 2006, Joe wrote:

Still haven’t figured out why there are two enter keys.

There aren’t – there’s a return key and an enter key, and the return
key generates an enter when chorded with fn.

But what’s the difference?

What’s supposed to happen is that the Enter key is used to commit or end
a
modal interface, while return is to let you type in more than one line.

For example, if you had a program that had a textarea – let’s say,
order
comments – and a button to Save the order, the return key should let
you
type multiline comments. But enter is bound to the Save key, so you can
be in anywhere in the form and hit enter and the form is dismissed with
the default action.

The reality is this distinction is rarely if ever followed (eg, Apple
Remote Desktop 2 doesn’t do it).

–Jim

Ah, thanks for explaining that. I Googled a bit and didn’t find
anything.

Joe


#10

Still, I wonder what it is about Rails and Macs.

my theory is it’s the combination of Unix power with commercial GUI
zero-install convenience. it may also be that Apple computers are
simply more beautiful and less hassle. Rails is a framework which
prioritizes aesthetics in its code and strives to eliminate
inconveniences and irritating wastes of time. if you’re looking to
eliminate inconveniences and irritating wastes of time, purging
Windows from your life makes a great deal of sense. also, Apple’s
historically always been favored in the graphic design world, and
that’s the world Rails comes from and optimizes for.

I had a Mac back when I did production art for graphic design firms.
then I switched to PC because all the corporate types I had to deal
with kept complaining about my Mac. this was a while ago, and lately
I’m beginning to wonder – maybe the fact that the Mac alienated
corporate types in those days was actually a feature rather than a
bug.

anyway, today I have a Linux server and a Windows desktop, so an Apple
latop is the next logical step, and I am looking forward to it, but I
might as well take this opportunity to make the standard disclaimer
against platform prejudice: the more tools you can use, the better off
you are. every platform has its strengths. be considerate to people
who use different computers, code in different languages, or wear
unusual clothes. look both ways before crossing the street. clean your
room. brush your teeth. return your library books.

ok, I feel better now.


Giles B.
http://www.gilesgoatboy.org


#11

On Apr 17, 2006, at 8:35 AM, Giles B. wrote:

the more tools you can use, the better off
you are. every platform has its strengths.

Interesting. I wonder if André Watts, or Picasso feel hindered and
limited by their use of a Piano and Paintbrush, respectively. :slight_smile:


– Tom M.


#12

Hindered? Probably not.
Poor? Quite probably.

On Monday, April 17, 2006, at 11:08 AM, Tom M. wrote:


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_Kevin


#13

On Apr 17, 2006, at 12:11 PM, Kevin O. wrote:

Hindered? Probably not.
Poor? Quite probably.

I have absolutely no idea what you mean by this.

I’m quite certain that Picasso did, and André Watts does,
quite well financially.

Did I misunderstand?


– Tom M.


#14

Hey, Picasso was also a successful sculptor, and before he developed
his Cubist style, he mastered realistic drawing. I don’t actually know
who Andre Watts is, but all of the best musicians I’ve met have played
multiple instruments, including high school friends who today sing
opera professionally. But whatever, it’s a tangent, use what you want!
:slight_smile:

Giles

On 4/17/06, Tom M. removed_email_address@domain.invalid wrote:


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Giles B.
http://www.gilesgoatboy.org


#15

Actually, I find that developing on Windows and deploying on un*x
disciplines me to avoid putting OS- and machine-dependent things in my
code. There is only one line in my entire first deployed app that is in
any way, shape or form specific to any OS or machine environment: a
single file path pointing to where I have file_column store images on
the production server.

As a result, I’m confident that I can deploy my apps on any OS in any
type of environment (shared hosting, VPS or dedicated) with no
modifications at all. That’s sort of neat.

Josh S. wrote:

Kevin O. wrote:

Still, I wonder what it is about Rails and Macs.

Doing Rails development on Windows isn’t nearly as nice as doing it on a
unx system. Plus there’s a lot to be said for developing on an OS that
is similar to your production environment, and most people developing
with Rails would be shooting for some flavor of un
x in production. That
said, if you want a laptop that runs un*x, Mac is the best option.

I find it interesting that the stats for my blog (which is mostly Rails
stuff) show more Mac browsers than Windows, and about half as many Linux
browsers as Windows. Oh yeah, Firefox also spanks every other browser in
the stats. Internet Exploder doesn’t even make the short list!


Josh S.
http://blog.hasmanythrough.com


#16

Kevin O. wrote:

Still, I wonder what it is about Rails and Macs.

One word: Textmate


#17

Kevin O. wrote:

Still, I wonder what it is about Rails and Macs.

Doing Rails development on Windows isn’t nearly as nice as doing it on a
unx system. Plus there’s a lot to be said for developing on an OS that
is similar to your production environment, and most people developing
with Rails would be shooting for some flavor of un
x in production. That
said, if you want a laptop that runs un*x, Mac is the best option.

I find it interesting that the stats for my blog (which is mostly Rails
stuff) show more Mac browsers than Windows, and about half as many Linux
browsers as Windows. Oh yeah, Firefox also spanks every other browser in
the stats. Internet Exploder doesn’t even make the short list!


Josh S.
http://blog.hasmanythrough.com


#18

Oops, I was thinking of a different artist, who was unappreciated in his
time.

On Monday, April 17, 2006, at 12:15 PM, Tom M. wrote:

Did I misunderstand?

Interesting. I wonder if Andr� Watts, or Picasso feel hindered and
limited by their use of a Piano and Paintbrush, respectively. :slight_smile:


Rails mailing list
removed_email_address@domain.invalid
http://lists.rubyonrails.org/mailman/listinfo/rails

_Kevin


#19

Interesting, didn’t know that about Picasso.

Andre Watts is a pianist. A very good Pianist. :slight_smile:

I think I made my point. If I wasn’t clear,
the point was this: Use what you need to use
to be successful, where success is measured
in any way you want it to be. :slight_smile:


– Tom M.