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Profound Disappointment

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Posted by Daly de Gagne
Aug 9, 2010 at 08:16 PM


As I continue to explore programs here on my new Mac, a very profound kind of disappointment is growing.

Quite honestly, I came back to the Mac with a great deal of optimism that programs, especially the information programs, would be better. All in all,  I do not see that they are. I’ve already ranted about that, and my opinion that Mac developers are coasting on Apple’s laurels.

The word processing options seem about the same as in PC world.

Perhaps if I could figure out “services” I could understand why some programs seem to have them and others do not.

The computer itself feels solid, and has not crashed once. I like the feel and the look of it.

But for this I paid a few hundred dollars more than I could have for a new Windows 7 machine.

In spite of my frustrations with both MyInfo and UltraRecall for some of their development quirks, they look far better to me now, having explored the Mac equivalents.

EN seems better in the Mac, except so far I haven’t found a universal clipping pane which operates as highlight and click - I have to highlight, copy, and then click.

And I do like the single pane for text in OmniOutliner - but the lack of built-in ability to make a bullet list in the text, lack of links, lack of tags, outweighs what is done right. And since the in-line text can become long, a fold feature would be ideal.

So I have a couple of days - do I keep the Mac, or do I ask Staples for my money back, and get a PC?

Would someone please remind me of what the advantages of a Mac are, again?

I apologize for sounding the way I do - for weeks I had been looking forward to this purchase. And no amount of my rationalizing to myself is helping me to avert the disappointment. If I am doing something wrong, please tell me.

Honestly, I am not sure what I should do.

I find myself missing Windows programs which, while not perfect, seem to be a little more thought out - DevonThink looks powerful, but between EverNote and Surfulater, is it worth the cost of a Mac? NoteBook comes close, and so does OmniOutline - but frankly, MyInfo can do what I want better to my mind than scuttling back and forth between NB and OO. As long as I have no illusions about using MyInfo for web-related material, which is where its the least well thought out. But I am used to EN and Surfulater for that already.

Perhaps I should bite the bullet - and get Parallels and a copy of Windows 7 for the Mac.

Thanks for any input.



Posted by Wes Perdue
Aug 9, 2010 at 08:49 PM



I think a false expectation may be leading to your disappointment.  There are different philosophies on the two platforms, and you seem to not be allowing yourself enough time to adapt to the Mac app design philosophy.

PC apps seem to have a a kitchen-sink approach; that is, they just keep adding features until the apps are unwieldy.  Mac apps tend to be more like a well-designed Unix utility: they do one thing well, are well-defined, and work perfectly.

I started my Mac adventure about two and a half years ago.  It took six months before I started feeling comfortable with my Mac, and it took me a year to let go of my PC.  I am now so in love with my Mac that you’d have to pry it from my cold, dead hands.

I’m a sys admin, with many years experience in Windows, Solaris, and Linux.  I’ve been using DOS/Windows professionally since MS-DOS 3.3.  I’ve used Windows more than any other platform.  It took me a very long time to unlearn it and adapt to my Mac.  I assure you that the journey for me was worth it; I expect it’ll be the same for you.

Please give it more time.  If you are too uncomfortable, go back to Windows 7.  It’s not that bad an OS.  However, the Mac is a much more elegant tool, as are its best apps.



Posted by Harlander
Aug 9, 2010 at 09:11 PM



sorry for raising my voice, as I am just a lurker, but I think it also has to do whether the programs available for the Mac simply fit your needs… For myself I haven’t found anything in the windows world that would even come close to DevonThink, as I have to handle lots of documents and the inherent AI is worth every penny of my Mac. All my outlining, linking, analyzing etc. is done in Tinderbox, another program I cannot live without. Then there is the excellent Curio, again without counterpart in the windows world. I left Windows behind three years ago and I have never looked back since. But as Wes pointed out, I think it is better to have different programs that each do one thing very good and thus complement one another than to have only one, that does all of it just a little bit and lacks in every other area. Let your expectations rise too high and you will be disappointed. It took time to get to know the OS, but after all the frustration with Windows I thought I might as well give it a chance. And step by step it all made sence - even services… And then, there is still VMWare Fusion and Parallels, so I can still use connectedtext and citavi whenever I need it. So, nothing’s lost with a Mac…




Posted by quant
Aug 9, 2010 at 10:11 PM


“But as Wes pointed out, I think it is better to have different programs that each do one thing very good and thus complement one another than to have only one, that does all of it just a little bit and lacks in every other area.”

I think otherwise, as far as PIM software is concerned. I think is far better to live with small deficiencies in some of the arreas, but have ALL the info under one hood. At the same time, this allows one to understand the chosen soft and become master of it.


Posted by Manfred
Aug 9, 2010 at 10:25 PM


why raise one’s voice at all? There is nothing inherently wrong with Windows 7, and there is nothing inherently wrong with the Mac. They are different, and some will like the Mac, others will like the PC. It’s not a religious issue either.

I tried out the Mac a few years ago, and I went back after a year. One of the reasons was that I found that many of applications that sounded so great when I had no access to them, actually did not look so great when I tried them. Voodoopad was very disappointing (especially the search feature). Tinderbox was extremely unintuitive and downright cumbersome to use. I gave it an effort, but it did not give me much back for that effort. And DevonThink, after which I had lusted after most, could not even open more than one database. The search feature was a lot better than that of Voodoopad, but really not any better than what I was used from ConnectedText.

Having said that, I really liked Mellel. It was/is the best word processor I have ever worked with. The outliners were also better (and Opal did not even exist at this point). Still, it was not enough to keep me from going back.

I think it is a question “whether the programs available for the Mac simply fit your needs.” And they did not. No hard feelings, but diff’rent strokes for diff’rent folks.



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