Definitive Mac mini to Dell Price Comparison

In The Mac mini: Comparing Apples and Oranges, Dan Frakes breaks down the pricing for Apple’s low-cost system and a “comparable” $399 Dell system that journalists all over the planet seem to think is a fair comparison. Unlike all those other journalists, he actually compares _everything_ that comes in the box or pre-installed on the hard drive.

In The Mac mini: Comparing Apples and Oranges, Dan Frakes breaks down the pricing for Apple’s low-cost system and a “comparable” $399 Dell system that journalists all over the planet seem to think is a fair comparison. Unlike all those other journalists, he actually compares everything that comes in the box or pre-installed on the hard drive.

The nutshell is, the Dell is missing a lot. If you need any of those things (and some of them, such as anti-virus software, are essential to everyone running Windows), the Dell stops being so cheap.

Macworld Expo Hits From Apple

Like a lot of other Mac aficionados, I followed yesterday’s announcements by Apple quite closely. A lot of people are writing about them, so I’m just going to jot down a couple of thoughts I’ve had that I haven’t seen elsewhere.

Like a lot of other Mac aficionados, I followed yesterday’s announcements by Apple quite closely. A lot of people are writing about them, so I’m just going to jot down a couple of thoughts I’ve had that I haven’t seen elsewhere.

Mac miniBut first: I think the Mac mini is a grand-slam; I expect Apple to sell a million units a quarter through the rest of this year (assuming they can make that many), with only a modest impact (cannibalization) of sales of existing products. Most of these will be to first-time Mac owners. The price point and the packaging are both trying to suggest that the Mac mini is an impulse buy (even if the idea of switching platforms on an impulse is ridiculous).

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Building a Better Keyboard

Today I attached to my Mac G4 the most advanced, comfortable keyboard I’ve ever used: a 10-year old Apple Extended Keyboard.

Today I gave up on the KeyTronic, the keyboard I selected when I couldn’t stand anymore the Apple Pro Keyboard that came with my new computer. I used it for several months to be able to say that I truly gave it a shot. But, in the end, it sucked. Like most keyboards today suck.

I now have my trusty 10-year old Apple Extended Keyboard attached to my 6-month old Apple G4, using a Griffin Technology iMate ADB-to-USB adapter.

It’s kind of an ugly hack. I’d much rather be using a modern USB keyboard, especially one with the special keys for volume up/down/mute and CD eject, like the new Apple Pro Keyboard.

But all of those just have the wrong feel. Too spongy, wrong resistance, not enough tactile feedback. The AEK is perhaps the finest keyboard ever made. Certainly, it is to me. I may never give it up.