05 mars 2007

Your computer is about your needs - it's not about impressing your neighbour

What do you do with your computer?
I asked myself that question. If you never asked yourself that question before you might find it to be an eye opener. When I decided what cellphone and cell provider I would sign up with, my decision was similar. I asked myself *where* I needed call and data coverage, geographically. I also asked myself whether I was after a fixed or a variable price for calls. In this case it's computers, and so you should think about which tasks you use it for. Examples of tasks are as following:

- Writing documents, school papers, doing spreadsheets and corporate/school presentations.

- Gaming, situation A
Lots of so called "dedicated PC gaming", where it matters to have the coolest and fastest computer. Upgrading and experimenting with the hardware is of greatest, critical importance.

- Gaming situation B
Casual gaming to relax in front of the computer. This can be tetris-like games or a strategy game that is both entertaining to the person and the mind. Perfect after a tough day at work or school.

- Computer leisure activities such as managing photos, arranging holiday cards, etc.

- Professional editing of movies, music and photos / images.

Note: Unlike what I have seen others do when they write about this subject, I am not going to recommend which operating systemyoushould make based on your tasks. I say: find this out for yourself by giving Mac OS X, Linux distributions and Windows a try on the tasks you need to have done.
The ultimate decision is such a personal choice anyway that you are most likely to disagree with my standpoint in any case if I interfere with my personal opinion on the matter.

If you decide to go an alternative route, how scary is it to be introduced to something new and different?
This is probably the hardest thing for most people. Being scared to something that works very different from what they are used to. While people like me LOVES new things and innovation, a lot of people hate it when they feel lost and almost inprinted with the idea that something is supposed to work in the way *they* want it to work.

The solution to above problem? Be open and be willing to listen and learn.
Accept the fact that there are more than one operating system out there and while A and B can be similar to each other, they are likely to be designed to do at least one thing different. This should logically come from a desire to improve on how things are done in the system.

How likely is it that person A or person B will succeed with learning a new system?
The willingness to adapt. It's all about adapting to the new environment. Feeling at home. If you dare to, you can compare it with changing from living in a big house to living in a medium-sized apartment in another city.

Personal choice
I myself chose a Mac. I did so because it fulfills all my needs on all aspects. I belong to gaming situation B above, and I also extend my gaming needs through gaming on Playstation 2. Again, I repeat: my needs. Not necessarly yours. The perfect machine for me is either a failure or success for someone else.

Good luck! :-)