Mac systems provide integraded software, protection from spyware

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It’s a rehashed, decade-old debate, but one that boils down to one main point: Macintosh computers are superior to personal computers in nearly every way.

Most people’s initial complaint against Macs is they are too hard to use. PC users in particular have this gripe, but in reality, Macs don’t operate that differently.

The main differences are minor at best. The minimize buttons are in opposite corners, Mac laptops have no right-click button (feel free to plug in a mouse to solve this problem if the combination of pressing buttons and clicking instead of a click bothers you), and Macs use a different Internet application than Internet Explorer. That’s pretty much it.

I was a PC user my whole life until I bought my first Mac a year ago. I’m no computer whiz, but I managed to become reasonably comfortable with the oh-so-foreign Mac in about a week.

Pretty much everyone and their mom has an iPod and therefore uses iTunes. If you can use iTunes and navigate through your library, playlists and search capabilities, you already know how to use at least half of Mac applications. They’re all similarly designed – another reason Macs are better than PCs.

If, however, you’re truly a PC-application stickler, Mac can take care of that, too. Apple offers a program for Macs called Boot Camp. This software is free and reasonably easy to load. Essentially, it allows Macs to operate with Windows functions. As you start up your computer you choose whether to run it with Windows, or with the Mac OS X application. The only catch to this is you do have to buy Windows if you want to use it with your Mac, which can be kind of pricey. Windows XP software costs around $200 (half the price of an average PC itself), but by eliminating your dependence on Windows, you eliminate paying higher costs.

As far as Mac setup goes, it’s probably the simplest computer process I’ve ever gone through.

When I first got my Mac and took it out of the packaging, I had no idea what to do. I just sort of stared at it for a minute before pressing the power button. I was then prompted to enter in some registration details, and after about 15 minutes I was good to go.

A huge concern for both Mac and PC users is spyware. It seems impossible to escape, and I’ve had more than one computer ruined because they became overloaded with spyware. This has never been a concern with my Mac.

My Internet doesn’t suddenly shut down for no reason, I don’t have eight million pop-ups, and my Mac doesn’t run noticeably slower after a few weeks. Mac OS X, the operating system that comes with Mac computers, is designed for high security, and you can tell. It’s awesome.

In addition to Mac’s user-friendly nature and incredible spyware protection, it also has phenomenal programs. Every Mac comes pre-loaded with iLife, a program that houses a variety of applications. These applications encompass everything from iPhoto (similar to Adobe Photshop, but better, and with the ability to accommodate and group all your photos in addition to editing them) to iTunes and even iDVD.

The best part of iLife? All of the applications work together. Sure, you could go and buy programs similar to all these for a PC, but they wouldn’t work together as well.

For instance, with iLife, you can take photos from iPhoto and songs from iTunes and incorporate them into a movie you’re making in iDVD. Apple likes to call this goody-bag of applications “seamless integration,” and I believe it.

Since a Mac basically has everything you’d ever need on the inside, it’s no surprise the outside is just as great. Macs are incredibly stylish and designed in a useful, minimalist way.

A base model Mac laptop is going to be thinner and lighter than an average PC laptop (unless, of course you get a Mac laptop with a bigger screen for example). Macs have a sleek, elegant look to them. And hey, let’s face it, they just look more attractive than your average run-of-the-mill PC. Good-looking people deserve good-looking computers.

Bottom line: Macs are more useful and attractive than PCs. Thousands of people have made the switch, and for good reason.

April Newby is a sophomore in journalism and Spanish. Please send comments to edge@spub.ksu.edu.

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