Does anyone in Silicon Valley care about Windows anymore?

VMware Cloud annoucements.

Microsoft is today showing off pieces of the next version of Windows (we’re all calling it Windows 8 ) but I’m wondering if anyone cares anymore about Windows in the tech enthusiast space.

Why do I say that?

Well, at nearly every tech industry event lately I’ve noticed an almost complete shift away from Windows-based computers. Here, take a look at a panoramic photo I shot this morning at the VMware Cloud Foundry announcement (which was very interesting open source Platform-As-A-Service introduction, more Thursday when I get a video up). This room had only two PCs that I could see. The entire rest of the room was on Macs or iPads. Keep in mind that in this one room was a mixture of marketers, developers, executives, press folks, and hard-core geeks.

I noticed this same ratio at TEDx. At Web 2 Expo. At Stanford University events. At Facebook events. And other places.

Now, you could say “well, Silicon Valley is just weird and they all buy Apple stuff.” But, note that VMware is run by many former Microsoft executives (I met Charles Fitzgerald in the hallway, who is one of the smartest strategists I’ve ever met, and Mark Lucovsky was on stage this morning. You can see him at the front of the room in that panoramic photo behind one of the three VMware Macs. He even joked about his former Microsoft role “I developed DLL hell at Microsoft” he said).

But I saw the same shift at LIFT in Geneva, Switzerland and LeWeb in Paris and while the World Economic Forum had more PCs in the audience than at VMware, there were a TON of iPads.

Something is going on here, but why isn’t it showing up in market share numbers?

Is this the new “tech divide?” Those who are passionate about tech are going to get Macs and everyone else is gonna get a PC because their boss probably bought one for them assuming that if you only do email, Excel, and Powerpoint that there’s no need for you to have a Mac?

What does this mean for Windows 8?

When Steve Jobs noted that the iPad is ushering in a “post-PC world” I wonder if he knows something we don’t: that early adopters, influencers, geeks, developers, and Silicon Valley insiders are going “all Mac, all the time?”

Are you? If you’re still excited by Windows, why?

Here’s Facebook’s team that developed messaging, same kind of “mostly Mac” ratio:

Exclusive look into Facebook's "war room."

Comments

  1. Remember that small businesses can choose their platforms of choice much more quickly than large businesses can. In a large business, a ton of processes, a ton of infrastructure, and a ton of employee training would have to take place before the business would move to a different platform…and in most cases the current O/S that is deployed to the employees is some variant of Windows (possibly even Windows XP).

      1. When I worked at Microsoft we used to say that the biggest competitor for Windows was old versions of Windows. Sad, too, since Windows 7 is much more secure and much nicer to use than Windows XP.

        1. I dont know about that. At my school district we have crappy pentium 4 1.4 gigahertz processor dell desktops that ran Windows xp well enough but are a huge pain to use with Windows 7 which they all run now.

        2. I dont know about that. At my school district we have crappy pentium 4 1.4 gigahertz processor dell desktops that ran Windows xp well enough but are a huge pain to use with Windows 7 which they all run now.

          1. Yeah, true. Schools are way behind and always have been. It’s sad, but maybe smartphones will save us from crappy computing experiences in places like this.

          2. Yeah, true. Schools are way behind and always have been. It’s sad, but maybe smartphones will save us from crappy computing experiences in places like this.

        3. I have a Mac at work and Windows at home. If I’m doing web design and development, then the underlying *nix of OS X is great. For my photography, the Mac sucks. It really does. The GUI is ancient, doesn’t support dual screens properly, you can’t quickly switch between open documents (command-tab just switches between apps, then, you have to use yet another key combo, dumb) the finder is the worst implementation of a file manager I have ever seen, please god poke my eyes out with sticks if I need to move files/folders using the Finder.

          Finally, the Mac is overpriced. I can build a Windows desktop for half the price of a Mac Pro, have room for all the drives I need, swap graphics cards as they become available, and, oh yeah, I can still run XP for old weird hardware like SCSI scanners that aren’t supported by Win7. The Mac is just too expensive. Windows is a tool, and it’s gotten pretty good for the money. Which, really, is the only way to think of this: value for money.

          That said, I could care less about Windows 8. What I wish they could do is slim down the OS for those of us that just need a high-power GUI for graphics work. Windows loads far too much crap that I’m pretty sure I don’t need.

          1. could not agree with you more regarding the dual monitor support, am using snow leopard and the dual monitor support is truely horrible. MS would have been crucified in the media if they had this level of support.
            that said, you will find a small free app called xshelf which will save you from poking your eyes out when copying/moving files using the finder. enjoy.

          2. I use a Mac and an XP computer every day. Not one of your complaints about Mac OS has ever been a problem for me. Am I just the luckiest guy in the whole world?

          3. Being a PC user I have always been wondering what “mac” has to offer. Using it lately, I must say it does feel more stable and sleek, however, as with all apple products, you really don’t feel the power. The power to tweak and do stuff the way you wanna do. Apple always forces its users to use their products precisely the way they want them to use. In a nutshell, I feel macs are for artists and graphic designers, since its fancy and doesn’t need a lot of leaning to use.

            PS: Mac is also a PC duh!!

        4. That’s probably part of the problem, actually. If I develop web software, I can use fairly recent things: server-side I can run the latest version of Ruby, the latest PHP libraries, whatever

        1. My girlfriend works for a bank – they not only run xp – the run IE6 on all(!) Computers, as their software is scripted for running from ie6 and not compatible with newer versions.

          1. Sven, as I noted in a previous comment, as of early 2009 I worked for a company in which IE6 was the corporate standard. It irritated me to surf to some website and see a nastygram about how I shouldn’t be using IE6 – some of us didn’t/don’t have a choice (at least when we’re surfing from work).

      2. Diogo, you don’t have been apologetic or envious. I am sure you will get a Mac or iPad soon. In the meantime, hang in there.

    1. Small business actually have budgets to hold on too as well. That’s why -In Belgium- the Windows / mac ratio is pretty much 99/1. It’s not because a lot of Americans go on credit loans to buy a MBP or super-expensive monthly plans “+ FREE IPHONE 4 or iPad 3G” that the rest of the world is this stupid :) At our company we laugh at those who bought an iPad next to their 13″ mbp… why the hell do you need them both??? Yes, for angry birds.

      1. Even if a claim can be made the a Mac has a lower total cost of ownership, that initial sticker price helps make a lot of decisions. In the United States, the hypermarket Costco and Apple were unable to renew their agreement, so Macs are no longer available at this discount store, while Windows computers are.

    2. People asked me why I bought a netbook when there are other tablets out there…. here’s why:

      Storage (my netbook has 640GB on it with 200GB free)
      SQL Server and Visual Studio 2010 installed on my machine….. (no remote desktop needed for SQL access or hosting)
      Connect most (if not all) USB devices
      Support for most bluetooth connections with a small dongle.
      Microsoft Office 2010 w/ Outlook exchange
      Cisco VPN (although iPad has this too)
      It runs Zune so I can sync my WinPhone….

      Many reasons…. but the storage and 6 hour battery life is nice on my N450. I have a Crystal HD decoder so I can view Hulu and other things in Flash… and I can watch H264 and DVD movies with no issues or ripping required.

      No apps to buy to sync my content….. it’s nice and I love it.

  2. There’s something to be said for a boring OS. We buy apps for excitement; the OS should just chug along quietly in the background.

    Have I missed some great shift in sales and market share? Windows is on a whole lot of notebooks and desktops. Tablets and mobile devices haven’t yet taken over the world. WP7 might even sell a few Nokia mobile phones :-)

  3. You’re talking about a very very small subset of computer users with influence that rarely extends beyond their small insulated community.

    Microsoft is a global company with it’s eyes set on where the world is going, not where SV is going. People in our little echochamber are usually shocked to find out exactly how dominant Windows is worldwide (not to mention Hotmail, Messenger and any number of Microsoft platforms that dominate almost everywhere outside the US). Even WP7 is predicted to be immediately bigger than the iPhone as soon as the Nokia handsets get pushed out globally. When tablets officially go mainstream, Microsoft will have a viable platform for them and it will perform well, just as they do in almost every other sector of computing.

    This reminds me of a conversation I used to hear a lot in New York asking “who the hell shops at Old Navy and eats at McDonalds?” You have to be careful trying to draw conclusions based on sample sets that aren’t statistically relevant. (disclosure: I don’t own any Microsoft products and am largely an Apple fanboy, albeit a level-headed one)

    1. Yes, and the thing is the other users are NOT driving the industry forward. You say they don’t have any influence. I totally disagree. I’ve seen this play out before. I noticed the same “inside Silicon Valley users” switching to Windows in the early 1990s and the world followed them. Watch for the same to happen, especially if Windows 8 turns up to be a snooze (which is why Ballmer said today it’s a very risky release for Microsoft).

      I don’t think the Mac vs. Windows debate matters much anymore, I think the far more interesting thing will be the iPad vs. everything debate.

      1. I don’t really buy that the world followed Silicon Valley to Windows in the early 90′s. For the best part of the previous decade MS DOS was dominant OS and Windows 3 in 1990 was really just a shell upgrade to DOS. There were competitors in the 80′s, Commodore, Apple, Atari, but PC was dominant. Silicon Valley didn’t create Windows success.

        1. Actually, you’re wrong. I was working at Visual Basic Programmer’s Journal and saw the effect that Windows had. Did you know that much of Windows UI was developed on a Mac? Or that much of the software world was concentrated in Silicon Valley back then? The dominance the Valley had in technology back then was MUCH bigger than it is today and even the Mac Office team was located there (and provided much of the innovation for Windows versions of Office, which is really how Windows became dominant). Plus you forget the role of Adobe, et al.

      2. I agree, the evolution of the tablet will be much more interesting to see progress. I, for one, am finding more and more computing tasks that I prefer to do on a tablet and when you think about how early we are in UX design for the platform, it’s really quite amazing.

        In terms of the influence of SV, I do think there is value in monitoring it but I don’t think they’re king makers. If you take SV darlings like Friendfeed, I think you see influence in regards towards driving a technology but the actual consumer demand often takes a different form. In the case of Friendfeed, consumers never cared about it but when some of those features seeped into Facebook feeds, they loved them. The influence is there but I don’t think SV is great barometer of future consumer media habits at the platform level.

      3. I agree, the evolution of the tablet will be much more interesting to see progress. I, for one, am finding more and more computing tasks that I prefer to do on a tablet and when you think about how early we are in UX design for the platform, it’s really quite amazing.

        In terms of the influence of SV, I do think there is value in monitoring it but I don’t think they’re king makers. If you take SV darlings like Friendfeed, I think you see influence in regards towards driving a technology but the actual consumer demand often takes a different form. In the case of Friendfeed, consumers never cared about it but when some of those features seeped into Facebook feeds, they loved them. The influence is there but I don’t think SV is great barometer of future consumer media habits at the platform level.

      4. The influence of the Valley can only go so far. The average user may not be pushing the industry forward but they are buying the products that do. For the average consumer spending $1000+, a price range the Mac dominates, on any computer isn’t something they’re interested in no matter how much better it is.

        I think this is why the iPad is so dangerous to MS. You potentially have an Apple computer that starts at $500, great build quality, is fun to use, easier to understand and free from the worries of malware.

        The ‘riskiest bet’ from Ballmer may be in regards to MS betting on Windows yet again even when the world seems to be moving away from it.

          1. I remember when people used to say they stuck with Windows because it was easy to use, compared to Linux. Apple came along and not only prettified the OS but started to make some real usability leaps. Windows has held its own with 7 but it’s been leap frogged again by the ipad.

            The really scary thing for Microsoft here is that they cannot compete with it. You can’t run Windows on a tablet without pulling your hair out trying to bullseye the tiny UI elements all day long. You can’t redesign Windows to run on a tablet and keep the legacy with all the hideous software everyone relies on. They are in a no win situation here.

            In fact it’s so bad for Microsoft that now all I hear about is Android (linux) vs Apple and its IOS. Hardly anyone mentions Windows at all anymore.

            And this is coming from a guy that has nothing but Windows boxes and doesn’t own anything Apple.

            Oh and there is nothing even remotely exciting about Windows 8. Nobody wants it.

          2. Isn’t that MSFT’s real problem? That as a monopolist, they CAN”T innovate and lose all their legacy business? Even now, a worst case scenario sees them with a 80% share of the market…..
            That has always been the problem of any company with a dominant position in the market.

      5. I have to disagree. Windows-based computers are significantly cheaper than Macs. A decent Windows laptop for a home user can be had for $400. Any new Mac laptop will cost $800.

        Given the very real economic crisis still facing the U.S. and many other countries, few people have the resources to purchase Macintoshes that are significantly more expensive than Windows-based systems.

        Also, most companies have significant investments in Windows and Windows-based applications. They are not going to replace that investment with Macintoshes any time soon. The cost of replacing hardware and software along with training costs is too high.

        Silicon Valley techies who are well paid can afford Macs. Do you see Apple getting into the commodity PC and laptop market? I don’t. Apple makes deep profits by selling luxury brand. Going to a commodity market would damage their brand, right?

      6. I have to disagree. Windows-based computers are significantly cheaper than Macs. A decent Windows laptop for a home user can be had for $400. Any new Mac laptop will cost $800.

        Given the very real economic crisis still facing the U.S. and many other countries, few people have the resources to purchase Macintoshes that are significantly more expensive than Windows-based systems.

        Also, most companies have significant investments in Windows and Windows-based applications. They are not going to replace that investment with Macintoshes any time soon. The cost of replacing hardware and software along with training costs is too high.

        Silicon Valley techies who are well paid can afford Macs. Do you see Apple getting into the commodity PC and laptop market? I don’t. Apple makes deep profits by selling luxury brand. Going to a commodity market would damage their brand, right?

          1. Not only that. The fact that iPad / iPhone exists and represents very dynamic market makes having a Mac machine absolute priority.
            So, the company has to buy 1000$ mac for developer.
            Do you think all other guys on top of food chain will have cheap Dells after that? Of course not. All company goes Mac now.

            How much it affects Windows – that’s another question though. Right now it does not seem much, you still have to have a copy of Windows on your Mac.

            But it is definitely a huge shift from mono-Windows view. People see that they are perfectly fine without Windows. And that makes Windows just one of the players instead of dominant force.

            That’s why we don’t care much of it anymore.

          2. Not only that. The fact that iPad / iPhone exists and represents very dynamic market makes having a Mac machine absolute priority.
            So, the company has to buy 1000$ mac for developer.
            Do you think all other guys on top of food chain will have cheap Dells after that? Of course not. All company goes Mac now.

            How much it affects Windows – that’s another question though. Right now it does not seem much, you still have to have a copy of Windows on your Mac.

            But it is definitely a huge shift from mono-Windows view. People see that they are perfectly fine without Windows. And that makes Windows just one of the players instead of dominant force.

            That’s why we don’t care much of it anymore.

          3. You are so clueless it isn’t even funny. I’ve seen musicians use them to run concerts. Adobe is shipping Photoshop on them. I’ve seen artists create amazing stuff with them. Video editing on them is getting better and better (it would serve my needs if it could deal with the video formats off of my camera). And on and on and on. 65,000 apps and even if only 5% are anything interesting that’s still more apps than you can figure out how to use.

          4. I think what he means Robert, is in the course of actually doing work. My ipad is great for a lot of things. But the moment i need to program, or use Silverlight or move media around, etc i need a desktop.

            There may be an app for a lot of things but not everything. The iPad may not qualify as todays “shiny new thing”, but its not the be all and end all. Very often the tried and trusted way of doing complex things beats any combination of apps on an iPad…

          5. You might be able to run Photoshop on them but I bet you can count on one hand the number of graphic designers who walk into the office and boot up their iPad for the next 8 hours to design anything meaningful. Personally I love my iPad, but it is a long way from my main work computer where I have 6 or 7 applications running and flip between them constantly.

          6. You ARE kidding right? I’d love to see you Photoshop a 12 megapixel image on 512MB RAM and a 10inch screen. The complete TWODDLE that comes out of these Apple fanatics….

          7. I would say, except in a few rare cases, the opposite is true. I sit here with ipad/android envy as all this great new software is coming out and I’m left looking through lists of yet another virus checker type programs I’ve long since sorted out.

            All of the sites I used to visit for the latest in software now focuses on mobile or are going that way. It’s distressing to see the weight of software development move away from a machine/s I’ve invested so much time and money in.

            I live in hope of some good emulation software this year.

            I’m kinda tied to Windows with the heavyweight 3D apps I use but I’m not really an average user. I suspect a lot of Windows users are tied to the OS in a similar way through work.

        1. Good luck running multitouch apps on your $400 windows laptop for 10 hours +

          The $500 iPad has more functionality than a $1000 windows pc (or a Mac for that matter) that’s why it’s so disruptive, and why apple almost instantly started selling more of them than macs (the market for macs took 30 years to grow – the iPad surpassed it in 6 months)

          1. Yes, so much functionality. Wait, there’s no keyboard! Oh and you can’t do native development on it. 1024×768 screen resolution kind of sucks too, compared to say a Dell laptop running 1080P on a 15″ screen. Or play PC games. Or run Microsoft Office/Exchange. No SD/Compact-Flash card reader either? No USB host? No firewire? No DVD/Blu-ray drive? No ethernet? Can’t install that USB 3.0 upgrade card? Can’t upgrade the memory?

            I think you’re high on the iPad ganja. Nice device to be sure. But until it poops out something like Motorola’s Webtop, it won’t replace the functionality that 75% of business types actually need.

          2. Excellent reply. I don’t usually get into these fights myself but your reply to iOSWeekly really highlights the mania that surrounds this whole argument. You’ve heard the saying that “to a hammer, everything looks like a nail”? That’s where the Apple and Android fanbois seem to be coming from.

            For serious work it’s my desktop or laptop PC (yes, PC) running Windows 7. My pocket device is an iPhone4. The iPhone is a FANTASTIC device but I don’t, for one minute, think that it replaces the PC: it augments it. I have seen, but don’t own, an iPad. Why? Because I’d have to cram it in between my PC and my iPhone. That would become a management headache. iPad as a general purpose computer? C’mon son (iOSWeekly) wake up! Realize that the devices address different needs. Stop trying to say “my favorite device (insert name here) is THE one-size-fits-all solution!

        2. Really the complaint here is that Apple is also the only hardware vendor. If they opened up OSX or iOS for other hardware vendors then the products would be cheaper.

      7. I know something’s afoot when I see my neighbors — all non-geeks — putting iMacs and iPads into their homes (and they are, trust me). Or when every kid in my neighborhood is using an iPod Touch to Facetime and free-text with their friends (and they are, trust me). Robert is right that there is an underlying shift happening.

      8. Hey Robert,

        “I don’t think the Mac vs. Windows debate matters much anymore, I think the far more interesting thing will be the iPad vs. everything debate.”

        then why do you post about the debate :P

      9. iPad vs Laptop = Laptop
        iPad vs Desktop= Desktop
        iPad vs Ereader = Ereader
        iPad vs Phone = Phone

        Use an iPad as an iPad please and leave EVERYTHING out of it.

  4. You’re talking about a very very small subset of computer users with influence that rarely extends beyond their small insulated community.

    Microsoft is a global company with it’s eyes set on where the world is going, not where SV is going. People in our little echochamber are usually shocked to find out exactly how dominant Windows is worldwide (not to mention Hotmail, Messenger and any number of Microsoft platforms that dominate almost everywhere outside the US). Even WP7 is predicted to be immediately bigger than the iPhone as soon as the Nokia handsets get pushed out globally. When tablets officially go mainstream, Microsoft will have a viable platform for them and it will perform well, just as they do in almost every other sector of computing.

    This reminds me of a conversation I used to hear a lot in New York asking “who the hell shops at Old Navy and eats at McDonalds?” You have to be careful trying to draw conclusions based on sample sets that aren’t statistically relevant. (disclosure: I don’t own any Microsoft products and am largely an Apple fanboy, albeit a level-headed one)

  5. That’s an interesting trend to see… when I was in college a couple years ago, the proportion of Macs to PCs was pretty staggering. And that was then. It might be one of those things when you a buy a car, all of a sudden it seems like everyone’s driving the same car. But there’s definitely something to be said about this adoption ratio… it’s definitely way above the market percentage. And the market predictions for the next couple years. Maybe it’s foreshadowing a larger trend than we all anticipated.

  6. I’m a developer (mostly web, using LAMP) and I care about Windows. I’ve had a Mac for the last 6 years but my main system and the one I always go to is a pc running Windows. I prefer Windows. I could do what I do on a Mac but I choose not to, I refused a Mac at work (partly due to the glossy screen) and went with a PC.

    I honestly don’t believe there is that much difference, there is nothing I can’t do on both (leaving out things like writing native apps for each platform). They are both a similar speed on similar hardware, they are both as easy to use and they are both as pleasant to use, they also both have annoyances.

    Apple hardware is beautiful and built so much more solidly than a lot of crap wintel hardware, that’s why my laptop will probably always be a mac, and why I’m not suprised people get sick of Windows, it’s not Windows but that cheap hunk of bendable plastic with a slow CPU and an epicly slow HDD they really hate.

    1. Well, yeah … considering there are a couple dozen PC manufacturers (if not more) and you can buy “Wintel” boxes at just about any price point. You can buy Macs from ONE vendor, Apple. OK, so your Mac is better than a “lot of crap” Wintel hardware. Buy a slightly more expensive piece of Wintel hardware and all-of-a-sudden the Mac ain’t better from a hardware standpoint. You can’t generalize that ALL Wintel hardware is crap like that. Anyone who’s ever been to a Best Buy knows better than that. Yup, a Mac is better than a $350 Acer but it categorically AIN’T better than a $800 Dell.

  7. I use Windows for my desktop and server OS. This is out of familiarality and ease of use. I also use Linux in a VM as a web server. Windows has gotten a lot better over the years. I think there is just a new generation of IT Pro’s out there, and they come from the Apple mentality. There is nothing wrong with Apple, but it has been the “trendy” thing to like, as has Microsoft (or as some people call it Micro$oft).

    Hit up any hardcore enthusiast forum, and you will notice that Apple doesn’t really have a lot of influence. HardForum, Anandtech, Toms Hardware, etc.. All PC enthusiasts, and we enjoy PC’s and Windows. There is a small subset of us that use Linux, but the Apple users are a definite minority.

    I’m not anti-Apple, I just have ZERO use for a Mac or iPad. I own an iPod Touch for MP3 (the others I’ve owned paled in comparison) and it is excellent. iTunes, though, is another story. So much for Apple “It Just Works” attitude.

    1. Yeah, but you’re talking about iTunes on WIndows, right? It really is a bad product. iTunes on Mac on the other hand works very well.

      1. I keep hearing (well, reading ;-)) people say how bad iTunes is on Windows. I haven’t had any problems with it. My iPhone4 and my wife’s iPod touch are both well supported on my Win7 box with iTunes. I run it on my other machine in my lab all the time playing background music while I work. Haven’t had any trouble with it on that machine either.

      1. So, scoble. The guy as a point. Why don’t you go counting the number of virtual machines running on those macs, regardless of where the conference is at.

        Surely thats a better indication of Windows usage…

        PS – Microsoft doesn’t care weather you use Windows on Mac or Wintel hardware….

    1. People run Windows on Macs for 2 reasons, mostly:

      1) Need/want to use a program doesn’t have a Mac version, or there is no equivalent Mac program, or they already own a Windows license;
      2) Professional developer of Windows programs.

      The longer you use the Mac, the more you discover programs that do or outdo what your Windows program does, the less often you run Windows on your system.

      This is my experience, anyway, and what I’ve observed in others.

  8. How many of the people at the event this morning were running Windows in VMWare on their Macs at the event? How many copies of VMWare for the Mac to run Windows on the Mac has VMWare sold?

    Best data that I have seen suggests that 94% of destops/laptops are still running Windows. You have better numbers? Data?

    I am clear on the fact that Apple has sold lots of iPads/iPhones, but I think in terms of % of the market Apples share for desktops and laptops may even be down.

    Please don’t confuse what’s going on in the Valley with the rest of the world. I have been at three companies in the last week, all in the 50-100 seat range, Noe are using Macs. And they are all smart and well run companies.

    I was at another company that has 30k seats of Windows/Office/Dynamics 360, and no Macs. I guess it might depend on your prism.

    1. I didn’t see anything but OSX running, but I couldn’t see every Mac screen.

      Yes, when I fly I see all the Windows users. They almost are NEVER “tech passionate.” It’s very rare to find a tech passionate using Windows anymore outside of Microsoft MVP communities.

      Again, I’m noticing the same thing happening in tech events around the world, even ones that only had three Silicon Valley types (like LIFT).

      1. I’m in the DC area and involved with a vibrant startup community here. At our last meetup (400 attendees, all from startups) the Mac hardware was pretty dominant. I saw a few Wintel laptops but mostly MacBooks, iPads and a plethora of iPhones and Android devices. Very few Blackberries though.

  9. Hello Robert,

    We met at Office2.0 2008 – you won’t recall – it seems & was a long time ago. My 1st blog comment on your blog ;)

    As a former Microsoft reseller / Novell employee I know Windows – almost from the start. Robert, Windows isn’t’ going away. Cloud, bah, bah, bah.. (BTW I love the Cloud).

    The enterprise is its sanitary, look at the stats. But time tell where Microsoft’s future lies. It seems the consumerization of IT has them..

    As a former MS employee, I’ sure you have a strong position.

    See you at the next Office2.0 or SV comes to UK, etc

    Best

    Nick

    1. I sold all my Microsoft stock a few weeks ago. I just don’t believe in the company anymore and neither does anyone at VMWare (which IS enterprise!)

      1. You do realize that Without Windows, VMWare would be stuck with just Linux to support? Right?

        1. Yeah, but that is the point, we’re not talking about VMware Workstation either. VMware is gearing up for the next generation of users and servers.

          Our users don’t care about what foundation you build your webapp on… Linux and various UNIX O/S will do just fine for the next generation of applications. We don’t need Windows Server and Office any longer.

          My future users could very well be all Android/iOS users on laptops/handhelds. All I need is a scalable [cloud] computing platform…

  10. I use a laptop at home but thats on its last legs and I know my next purchase will be a macbook pro I was never a big fan of apple and have always used Windows however I do see the macbook as the natural progression for me. I have the iPhone 4 which I love and an iPad which I hardly put down and Im happy with the products that apple provide, you could call me a convert. For all the I love Windows 7 and how much is saved MS from the epic fail which was Vista I still cant see myself as being a Windows user for much longer.

  11. Excited for an OS? No I can’t say I’ve ever really been excited for an OS. Though I’m certainly happier about the direction of Windows than I am OSX, which seems a dead man walking.

    I guess any enthusiasm I have for Windows is that its seems to be moving forward nicely, and its fairly open in terms of the hardware options available. And I expect that even more interesting options will appear with Windows for Arm. That’s probably one area where I could say I’m enthusiastic.

    I must admit the view you paint is completely alien to me, as I basically never see Macs anywhere out and about, and I don’t know anyone (aside from online) who owns a Mac aside from me. Its all Windows or Linux.

      1. I mean the OS, in terms of its relationship to iOS. It seems to me like we’ll be seeing iOS Macs in the consumer space instead of OSX.

  12. I work in a lot of different environments here in Vancouver, and the generalization that I would make is this. Inside big organizations people get issued windows laptops. Usually nasty plastic Dell-type machines, often running WinXP. When people buy for themselves, like students, freelancers, people in startups, you see a LOT of MacBooks.

      1. Sounds right to me too.

        I wonder if that’s an issue with the age of the company’s culture as well. Not necessarily the chronological age directly, but the era in which that culture was forged. Lots of these big organizations getting the “nasty plastic Dell-type machines” are older and stodgier and more likely to go with what worked previously. Startups and the like – in or out of the valley – are more likely to attract people with a different mindset.

  13. You see the same thing at blogworld and other social media events. I know of very few content creators that use windows.

    I’ve been traveling around the world for 4 years with a Mac. I was able to buy a new MacBook in Vietnam when I dropped my old laptop, and get it serviced for free in Israel.

    No way I’d ever go back to windows.

        1. If Win8 doesn’t rock, Windows 7 will hang on and be the next “never-will-die” O/S, taking that spot from XP.

          Apparently, Vista, like Windows ME, didn’t rock.

  14. I think one reason we might be seeing a shift to macs is because of students. For the last 5-10 years everyone has been talking about how students are primarily using Macs. The percentage of them using Macs has been growing. I think that when they come out of college they are continuing to use Macs, and where possible, convincing there employers to let them use Macs (even if that means using there own computers at work).

    If students are coming into the workforce prepared to use Macs businesses are going to start using them too and I think that is what is starting to happen (albeit gradually).

    1. That resonates for me as to why Facebook is so Mac heavy. But VMWare is mostly old farts in that room. They aren’t influenced by college kids.

        1. Not very hard to understand when you realize the VMware is competing directly against Windows. Why WOULD they use the competitions products in public forums?

  15. In the past 6 years, I have purchased a Mac computer on four separate occasions. I have really tried but I really do not like the feel of the OS, and I don’t find it a challenging or usable computer for me. I’ll never buy another Mac. Windows 7 is actually quite awesome. I’m excited to hear about Windows 8.

    1. The only thing that bugs me is the way that the Mac maximizes and minimizes windows. But, personally, I have no trouble with Windows 7 either. Got one here myself. Put Chrome on it and it rocks!

      1. For me, the way OSX handles windows is fine a a single, medium-sized display, but cruddy on a laptop due to the limited screen real estate, and it’s crappy on dual monitors owing to the universal menubar.

  16. How’s the Mac adoption in China? In this Shenzhen design shop, don’t seem to have any of ‘em.
    Youtube video: “Shenzhen Behind the Scenes 3: Richtechie.com, Freescale i.MX51/53 PCB designer”

      1. China is a different market, but so are India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, VietNam (etc), all of Eastern Europe, all of South America, and so on. It would be simpler and more accurate just to say “California is definitely a different market than anywhere else” ;-)

        In other news, 4.8 billion of the world’s 6.7 billion people don’t have broadband, around 1.5 billion of them are living in poverty, and roughly 25,000 a day are dying of starvation. Most of them don’t really care whether a few nerds prefer Mac OS X.

        1. Eastern Europe is not one market. Take Poland and the Czech republic, they’re more likely to have Macs than say the Ukraine.

          The old “Eastern Europe” concept is now firmly split along EU and non-EU lines…

          As for South America with Brazil’s insane import taxes, how can you expect anyone to afford a PC?

  17. I’m actually a switcher back to Windows (see my own blog entry at http://bit.ly/hxNiOa about the new netbook/tablet machine that replaced my aging 1st-generation MacBook and complements the PC “tower” at home). MacOS may be an incredibly elegant and robust operating system, but Apple just has simply not made the case as to why it should be the primary operating system in the business environment. They still haven’t conquered the idea that the Mac is the machine for “creative types” and not for “real businesspeople.” I wonder how many of those iPad owners still have Windows-based machines back at home and in the office.

    1. Probably a lot. Why? Because of the same reason my brother had a Blackberry: his company was paying for it and didn’t give him a choice. Now that he’s laid off, he has an Android phone.

  18. Microsoft has no main visionary, like jobs. it seems they consists only of lawyers and marketeers. it seems the product exists only for one main reason, to make money. on the other hand osx lion is showing so much new ideas (“not features”) and many “risky” innovations that i think windows have to come up with something really huge to be not just a second class os for the cheap computer market.

    1. I don’t want to be a Microsoft defender (and I am not suggesting Microsoft is not litigious), but I think you have a significant blindspot when it comes to Apple’s litigious nature. While I feel that OSX is beautiful, there is very little that I’ve heard of Lion which has given me any cause to be excited for it’s release.

      It’s interesting that we hold so much emotional investment for software that is only a platform only for the actual software we wish to use.

    2. For a company of “lawyers and marketeers” they’re doing pretty well.

      I’m not microsoft fan or defender but let’s not exaggerate. Microsoft has some of the best and brightest engineers in the world. Yes they have a chequered history with regards to technology but they do also produce good products. Remember their product lines extend across the desktop and server space (and then some) and they dominate in many of those areas. You don’t get so successful by just being run by lawyers and marketeers. They’re clearly helping people solve real life problems.

      Apple V Microsoft is a debate rooted in religion not common sense.

  19. Microsoft has no main visionary, like jobs. it seems they consists only of lawyers and marketeers. it seems the product exists only for one main reason, to make money. on the other hand osx lion is showing so much new ideas (“not features”) and many “risky” innovations that i think windows have to come up with something really huge to be not just a second class os for the cheap computer market.

  20. I notice that many people comment on the case look/feel/design of windows-based laptops, but the internals are the reason I would never get a mac. While I wouldn’t say that I don’t care about the look of a system, it rates far below the actual performance/capabilities when I am purchasing. The actual hardware in a mac is frankly lacklustre when you step beyond the cpu.

    Having said that, I would buy OSX in a heartbeat were it possible to run it on any system. The only problem is that I don’t think Apple is capable of managing the mountain of hardware they’d need to support.

      1. Funny, my Dell laptops (both of them) have zero internal problems. (Mine is about 18 months old and the wife’s is about a year). Both mid-line Inspirons.

        So much for internal problems. ;-)

      2. Macs are and will be created hardware and software hand in hand. Just like Sony’s PSP and the PSP games. They are created to work only with each other, with the known available resources and all and do it well and stable.
        But. You. Can. Not. Expect. from an OS written to run with all kinds of ever created hardware and/or software to do that. Ever. What it does, it does pretty good. A problem or two in that matter is bound to happen. And not that often even, mind you.
        And can anyone please tell me what’s up with Dell laptops??? Get an i7 R15 Win7 one. Looks and internals abound for a budgety desktop replacement. Not for battery life lovers though. But as a lot of people kinda said here, THERE IS NO PERFECT SOLUTION TO ANYTHING. Windows machine, Android phone, Apple MP3 player, iPad to read your morning news… Each one has its niche, its customers, its benefits. Its stupid to argue about choosing one of a bunch of something so drastically different things. But even M$ and Apple don’t really get it, do they? Its OK, competition is good. But the “mine is the ultimate and yours is nothing” approach is really like a religious argument.
        Still, I can upgrade my machine whenever I feel like it, or put Linux on it, and it will still run, and I may curse it when it doesn’t, but that will most likely be my own fault. And it won’t make me be just a USER, or obligate me to do anything at all. In your faces.

      3. Funny, my Dell Inspiron 1720 which I am using right now is over 4 years old and I have not had a single hardware issue. The original battery still gives me 3 hours + and it is a quite stunning gloss white + chrome chassis. I don’t see anything amazing about Mac hardware, nothing at all….

  21. Corporate IT here at Akamai started offering everyone a choice between macbook pros and thinkpads about three years ago, where previously it had been all thinkpads. I’d guess that 2/3 of the San Mateo office has mac laptops now. Desktop machines (which some people use and some don’t) are overwhelmingly Linux machines. You can get linux or windows desktops and mac or windows laptops, and most people now have a mac laptop and a linux desktop, if they use a desktop at all.

  22. I think a lot has to do with marketing. Apple has been great at making the PC look sub par. But no one can argue that PC’s are much less expensive. I recently switched from a PC to a Mac and one of the big reasons I did was because I had purchased an iPad and found that it was pretty much hassle free. I hoped that I would have a similar experience with the Mac. I did. I could actually get things done without worrying about other things that made a Windows PC cumbersome: virus scans, nagging windows update and the instability/incompatibility that came with the occasional driver updates to the system. At least that’s what sold me. I also think that nowadays Microsoft Office products aren’t as necessary as they used to be (see gmail and google docs)

    1. I never notice virus scans. They’re done in the middle of the night one night a week, and they’re done by the time I get the screen saver off. We’re already seeing malware targeting smartphones, hiding behind something just because it currently doesn’t get attacked much is just security through obscurity. And if my son who runs a Mac laptop is any indication, Apple sends out their updates on a regular basis as well, and while drivers can be an issue, it’s hard to find hardware that WON’T work with Windows, as my son found out when he wanted to connect a smart card reader to the Mac.

      I have yet to be sold 100% on the “cloud”. Yeah, my email is floating around there, and I backup my local documents, but I’m wired all the way. Ubiquitous access still isn’t there, and I don’t feel like paying yet even more money for a cap that’s 1/100th of what I have with my wired connection, let alone speeds sometimes that I swear a modem could beat. And if anything surely will kill the cloud, it’s bandwidth caps.

      And I could launch into a diatribe about how sucky iTunes is (at least on Windows), the ridiculous procedure to get ringtones on an iPhone, alert tones that can only be changed and not added to by jailbreaking, and just how high the walled garden Apple has created. And that was just 24 hours with my son’s old iPhone.

  23. Make no mistakes my friends, Apple has, is plotting a World Domination of the next computing era without even using a Mac, they are doing it for a while now and they are accomplishing that every new product launch. The iPod was the first stone that nobody (where i am) could link to that, but with that (and maybe without they knowing imediately) they’ve catpured a whole generation, they have turn upside down the perception of Apple and Mac’s in the world.
    After having several contacts with Mac’s over the years, only the last one will probably last. Using an iPhone & iPad made the Mac so familiar to me for the first time. Apple biggest hurdle is not by a long shot Microsoft, actually is another non-PC, the Android.
    Anyway, this won’t happen tomorrow or in the next week, but that generation will grow and they will replacing us in the opinion chain, household suppliers and trend(imposed)setters.
    OTOH, i’m just mumbling idioticy, nevermind…

  24. The like/share button does not appear to be working in Chrome. I hit like, and see the bubble. When I click on share, nothing happens.

  25. I think you understand that my comment was not meant as an indication of the quality of components, but more as an indication of the variety of choice and performance of components available. Also, please don’t take my response as defending Dell :)

  26. When I started college in 1999, I was the only person with a Mac on my hall. I knew maybe 3 or 4 other people at school who had Macs. Now, 10 years later, if you go back to the same school, probably 70% of the incoming freshman have macs. When I graduated in 2003 most people bought a new computer right before graduation (to use their school discount while it still applied) and many people who had used PCs for their 4 years at school got Macs. They were just sick of dealing with Windows problems. Their parents were also sick of fielding phone calls about how their PCs crashed or got a virus before their term paper was due. The web was making software compatibility less of a concern. Plus, by that time, the iPod was starting to take off and that gave more credibility to the Apple brand. Finally, unlike the generation before that was scared that they needed the same computer for home that they’d likely use for work, most graduates figured that if they needed a PC for work, their future office would give them one. They wanted a Mac for home use because Macs were better at the kinds of things they did on their personal time – namely digital music, movies, and photos. Its now 10 years later and most of my former college mates still use Macs when they have a choice, even if they are forced to use Windows at work.

  27. Wow, you write:
    “Those who are passionate about tech are going to get Macs and everyone else is gonna get a PC because their boss probably bought one for them assuming that if you only do email, Excel, and Powerpoint that there’s no need for you to have a Mac?”

    Could you sterotype/generalize a bit more there? You act as if people only buy Windows because it’s forced on them. Did you ever think that some (i’d even say most) people actually LIKE Windows. Basically you are saying that unless you are tech enthusiast, your a stupid, uninformed, ignorant, low life loser who doesn’t know how to make a educated decision.

    Why shouldn’t people be excited for Windows? You said yourself that Windows 7 works really well, Windows 8 is only going to be an improvement on that. Win7 is easily the best OS I have used and yes I hav used OSX, using OSX is like using Gimp – there are so many freaking windows/pallettes floating around, it’s so awakward and tedious to use.

    Why should anyone be excited about Lion? You have iOS apps coming, ok, so what? Don’t you already have those on your iPhone? Your iPad? Why do you need them on the desktop? Didn’t Steve Jobs say that your desktop OS won’t work on tablets and that is why MS hasn’t been successful with Tablets? Isn’t that basically what is happening by bringing iOS apps to the desktop? So since Apple is doing it, it’s ok?

    The problem isn’t that Windows isn’t built for Tablets, the problem is that the applications built on Windows aren’t built for Tablets. If Windows develpers actually built apps that were touch friendly, it really be an issue. Think about it, take any iPad app UI, convert it to WPF and run it on a Windows comptuer, it’s going to work just as well, it’s going to look exactly the same. Yet, on a Windows tablet, developers could utilize every windows API that they want, want to allow flash, done, want to allow multi-tasking, done, etc. When Win 8 comes around you’ll truly see a write once use everywhere scenario throught the MS ecosystem. Developers who ignore that expandablity/potential client base are foolish.

    How many of the people from conference to conference that you go to are the same people everytime? 25%? 50%? More? Go to any major office building, how many Macs do you see now? Go to a corporate buisness meetings, how many Macs do you see there? Silicon Valley will always be skewed from real world, it wouldn’t be Silicon Valley if it wasn’t.

    Does anyone in Silcon Valley care about Windows anymore? Yes, how do I know? Because I use Facebook on my Windows machine, I use QuickTime on my Windows machine, I use Twitter on my Windows machine, etc. etc. If silicon valley didn’t care about windows they wouldn’t build applications that are OS independent – because why? Most people don’t use Macs!

    1. “Windows 7 works really well, Windows 8 is only going to be an improvement on that.”

      I actually like windows 7 very much but I wont buy this statement until I see windows 8 running better than 7. there is too much bad history regarding the “next” windows

  28. I was an Apple skeptic clear through 2009. Then I went on vacation to Miami, and inside this huge upscale mall there was exactly one store selling any kind of computer – the Apple Store. And it was packed on a Thursday night. I walked through that place and realized that Apple had already pushed its products out of the “computer niche” into a much wider world of consumer goods. I think its that movement that Jobs is referring to when he says the “post-PC” world. And its for that reason – not because Apple has already won SV – that I think they’re going to dominate the next couple cycles of computing.

    I don’t think we have to debate whether SV early adopters will convince the broader market – just whether SV offers a good glimpse of where the broader market is going. Fwiw, I just met with a friend who is living in Australia right now. He says there’s more people carrying iPhone 4s in Sydney than here in the Bay Area by a wide margin.

  29. It’s all just a matter of perspective. Look at the standard offering for an employee of most large businesses (100+ people); it’s 90%+ Windows. Go international and businesses of all sizes are Windows. Macs aren’t invading cubicle farms, factory floors, hospitals, banks as fast as many might think if all you’re really exposed to is Silicon Valley conferences.

  30. As far as I’m concerned it’s not just windows that’s become irrelevant, it’s the Operating System that is not of interest anymore. Whether it’s Windows, OS/X or Linux I just don’t care about it. Currently I just use what is at hand without much thought about it. If I need to communicate, in most cases it’s my phone i use, if I need to create documents etc. I just grab my laptop or sit behind the desktop depending on where I am.

    I expect as more of my stuff is slowly moving into the cloud i won’t need a laptop or pc but could just do with a tablet (I still don’t use one).

    Apple makes nice hardware, without a doubt, but as far as hardware is concerned I’m still more the spec kind of guy and Apple’s just don’t cut it for me specwise, but that’s an other kind of discussion.

  31. I’ve been in computer design for 40 years, and worked with and designed hw/sw for the PC since 1981 when it first came out. Here is my motto today, given to friends and colleagues in no uncertain terms:

    If you need a computer, get a Mac.
    If you can’t afford one, wait until you can.
    And if you need one now, take out a loan.

    The next person that asks me about a Windows problem they’re having (cuz they heard I’m a computer expert) will see my eyes and skin turn red and my face morph to whatever they imagine to be the emissary from hell. (I thought Windows 7 was great until Service Pack 1 arrived and I put my hands in my face.)

    1. No thanks! I’d rather choose my own hardware on an open platform than be locked in and

      l i m i t e d
      —————

      You design computer software or hardware? Then you are no doubt aware that Macs do not have a hardware advantage, as they now run on hardware that originated with the PC. In fact it is fair to say that the PC running Windows or Linux has the hardware advantage and better driver support. The only real seperation between the platforms is the BSD based operating system with a skin slapped on which Apple has passed off as it’s own. You are also aware that the reason OSX works so beautifully for you is that it has been deliberately under-engineered. It only supports X hardware and if you need Y then it’s tough luck. With such built in simplicity any OS could be hassle free. This is a farcry from Windows or Linux where no effort is spared to support the most diverse range of hardware and software imaginable.

      i find it hard to believe you are any kind of computer expert, since no real tech could get by with a Mac – and I mean THAT ‘in no uncertain terms’. If all computers were Apple, then the tech industry would indeed be boring, pathetic and static.

      1. I’d disagree there. I worked at Microsoft and we knew that much of the PC hardware had crappy drivers. In fact, word on campus got around quickly to avoid certain brands, like Sony’s laptops, that had lots of driver problems. I’ve never seen problems with Apple’s drivers. They test them a lot more.

        Also, I disagree that the hardware is the same. We visited Seagate’s harddrive factory in China and Apple had a separate line that had more tests performed on it. IE, the quality of hard drives that Apple got was higher than the quality of drives that everyone else got.

        1. What?? You’ve never seen problems with all FOUR of Apple’s drivers? Surely this cannot be true!??!

          You completely avoided the point I was making – a sure indicator that it is in fact the truth. ALL of the technology in Mac’s, from the APU to the CPU to the FPU to the MMU to the GPU are not just PC based, but straight-up ripped technologies made possible by and developed in the Windows world, not the Mac world. Apple has not brought us a single technological innovation contrary to the myth and legend.

          You are trying to blur the issue by referring to component quality, which is irrelevant. If you pay good money for a good quality PC, you will get good components. If you buy a cheap PC you will get cheap components and it is down to the luck of the draw. I would actually say that Apples tend to under specced compared to their PC counterparts, but I’m not leveling any criticism at Apples QC at all – although I could if I was being prodded ….

          1. >Apple has not brought us a single technological innovation contrary to the myth and legend.

            I don’t remember a cell phone with a touch screen before the iPhone. Nokia? Nope. Windows Phone? Nope. RIM? Nope.

            As far as Macs? My brother-in-law worked on the custom chips that are now in today’s MacBookPros. They don’t have totally standard stuff, but, yeah, most of it is stuff that came over from PCs, like Intel processors, etc. So?

            You have no clue about supply chains. I’ve been in one. Apple’s line is right next to PC’s lines, but the Apple one has more workers on it, more equipment to ensure better quality, and extra steps to make sure the design is best-of-breed. I don’t remember seeing uni-bodies on PCs. Only Macs.

            It doesn’t matter, though. Silicon Valley has spoken. We’re using Macs. There is a reason for that. They work better.

          2. “I don’t remember a cell phone with a touch screen before the iPhone. Nokia? Nope. Windows Phone? Nope. RIM? Nope.”

            Which shows the limits of your knowledge. Are you 12, or just clueless? I have here in my hand a phone from 2005 called the HTC BlueAngel. You probably haven’t heard of it, but among its many features is a 4inch touchscreen – WOW! Tell me from your vast knowledge, was this the FIRST phone to feature a touchscreen, do you think? Wrong! In 2004 there was its predecessor, which had just a slightly lower spec and no QWERTY keyboard. Was this the first? Nope! In 2002 I owned a phone called the O2 XDA otherwise known as Wallaby. Do you think this had a 4inch touchscreen? Yes, you catch on fast. So much for that one….

            “As far as Macs? My brother-in-law worked on the custom chips that are now in today’s MacBookPros. They don’t have totally standard stuff, but, yeah, most of it is stuff that came over from PCs, like Intel processors, etc. So?”

            Well you said it…. A Mac is basically a PC. Thansk for making my point.

            “You have no clue about supply chains. I’ve been in one. Apple’s line is right next to PC’s lines, but the Apple one has more workers on it, more equipment to ensure better quality, and extra steps to make sure the design is best-of-breed. I don’t remember seeing uni-bodies on PCs. Only Macs.”

            Did I question Apple’s QC? Did I not EXPLICITLY state that I WASN’T questioning Apple’s QC?

            “It doesn’t matter, though. Silicon Valley has spoken. We’re using Macs. There is a reason for that. They work better. ”

            And to sum up, “Yes, I have made not one valid point, but, off with you, because I am in Silicon Valley”. Gripping stuff….

  32. Somewhat surprised that Macs are as popular at PHP based companies like Facebook. But the pictures could be misleading. How many of those Macs are running Windows? How many of the handful of PCs are running Linux? Windows could be more (or less) represented than the picture shows.

  33. I work on Windows from the middle-ages era (3.1). I used to be an IT sysadmin and in that role I managed Unix machines (a variety of). I do not know Mac.

    Now: in the real world of corporations one needs a way to centralize users, machines, administration. MS is good here. Could be better, but it’s good nevertheless.
    Linux is poor (though I love the platform). No centralized user base (don’t mention NIS, this is such a crap that I feel disgust

    1. Regarding central administration and management of OSX, Apple provides LDAP schema that can be used to centrally manage Macs called MCX. This is openly published and can be loaded into any LDAP compliant directory server system. Examples would be Apple’s own Mac OS X Server, Active Directory, OpenLDAP, Novell, etc… System Administrators point the OSX clients to the directory server and they get policies applied not unlike Windows with group policy and Active Directory. If the directory server implements Kerberos (as AD does), they clients can take advantage of single sign on to services in the domain/network as well.

  34. At work we use PCs on XP because of specialized software and legacy issues. At home I have a laptop running Ubuntu and a PC running Windows 7. The reason I care about Windows is because I’m a gamer. Mac falls flat in the gaming world. That’s the way it’s always been, Angry Birds or not.

    1. Or MS, oh wait, they aren’t in Silicon Valley. Or every other major website not in Silicon Valley (which is far more than you could mention that are in Silicon Valley), or every other Brick and Mortar company around the world.

      How many of those companies actually started in Silicon Valley, how many moved there later?

        1. How many of the people who use those services even care or know where those companies are based out of? 10% maybe? People care about the service not where that service comes from. If Facebook was based out of Des Moines Iowa, people would still use it because it offers a service that people want to use, the location has nothing to do with it. So So no, people don’t care anymore about silicon valley as they do any othe location.

          1. I have to agree with this thread. Doing business in CA sucks ass, with a lot of major companies moving core business out of CA to the mid west with lower operating costs. Silicon Valley has a found place in my heart from the growth of the PC and computers in the distant past, but it makes up very little of the overall business these days. Most interesting things, even from Apple and Google, are coming out of Asia. Following sales patterns of the Asian manufactures seems more interesting to me. Geeks and especially super geeks always use different computer devices because they believe they know better than the masses. Somehow the mass dollar still rules though.

            Most of my friends with mac hardware have their macs serviced for failures at least once a year sometimes more. While I still have a P4 XP machine that has only suffered a HDD failure in 5+ years of service. I think a lot of this has to do with dirt and heat on the mac side. But come on mac is suppose to be a good design right?

            Windows will be relevant for sometime to come, but I do not think windows needs a version 8. I think MS needs that next change like we saw going from win 3.1 to 95&NT. Interface design and input is changing and I do not think MS is keeping up with the state of the art.

  35. I totally agree. Here in Michigan, specifically in the Detroit-Ann Arbor area, I’ve have noticed the same thing. Robert you do not know, how much this article has touched home for me. Prior to reading, I was having problems working in XP with AD on a Mac with a Boot Camp partition and was thinking to myself the same thing and how awful Microsoft makes the UX.. As a systems engineer dealing with over 500 nodes (computer, iPads, servers and smartphones), I’m happy that we only have 5 Window machines in our environment (4 Windows 2000 servers and SQL server).

    Technology lovers are not the only ones who appreciate a Mac, just look at college campuses. Macs are the number 1 notebook on colleges campuses in the US. People just want things to work and be simple, as if life wasn’t already tough enough. Apple has mastered the art of simplicity through their product lines and that’s why people love them. Given the choice, I would always buy a Cadillac over a Chevy Cobalt and that’s the difference between buying a mac over a pc. Sure you could sup up a Cobalt and get a bunch of bells and whistles to go with it but at the end of the day, a Cobalt was not built and designed for the ultimate UX like the Cadillac.

    It’s always funny to see someone with a PC try to hook it up to a projector, it takes them like 20 minutes. It always cracks me up. LOL.

  36. Sure, there are people that still care about Windows—but not the right people.

    Large companies who’s IT infrastructure is tied to Windows care because they have to. Anyone who’s job security depends on Windows has to care.

    Thanks to the rise in prominence of startups and techies/nerds/geeks, we have a growing group of influencers who do not want lowest common denominator computing—Windows.

    And for web developers and designers, it doesn’t hurt that Mac OS X comes with many of the hot programming languages and frameworks pre-installed like PHP, Ruby, Python and Rails—the Ruby on Rails community is almost entirely on Macs.

    With there being over 350,000 apps for iOS devices and Apple having paid out over $2 billion to developers, there’s a growing industry that’s entirely Mac-based. As an added kicker, this industry is creating iOS apps for iPhone, iPod touch and the insanely hot iPad which themselves have changed computing and reduced and, in some cases, eliminated relying on Windows at all.

    Windows isn’t going away anytime soon; but its role as the 800-pound gorilla of computing is fading pretty quickly. What’s sad is how out of touch Balmer is about the whole thing.

  37. Robert – I switched to MAC about 8 months ago. Primary motivation was to run xcode in its native habitat.

    OSX in some ways feels dated/clunky compared with Windows7 – no/limited dynamic-icon stacking on the application bar; very “texty” menus; detaching menus from window frames doesn’t work so well on really big screens. Perhaps Apple will attack some of the UI-tiredness in Lion later this year.

    On the plus side, it is much more reliable and less subject to DLL-rot type decay than Windows. Time-machine is great. The hardware is world-class. And the native *nix prompt is nice.

    Honestly, I think both Windows and OSX are now so good, I think the “not caring” may be simply that people’s focus has moved on to other things.

    1. You understand that the hardware in Macs is the same as the hardware in PCs. Which is why you can build a mac with off the shelf parts and install OSX on it. Not that Apple wants you to of course. There’s just a small hack you have to do to get it to install and you’re off to the races.

      1. I too can build a car with spare parts, but I prefer a major manufacturer to do the planning, engineering and construction.

        For some reason the end product is much more stable and reliable…

        1. Fortunately for you, then, we’re talking about computers and not cars.
          Computers are far less complex then a car and your chance of dieing in one
          is next to zero.

          *
          *

          1. Oh, yeah? How much would it bother you if your car crashed as often as Windows?

            Computer components are supposed to follow a “standard”, unfortunately they don’t always work well together. I much prefer a laptop be designed and tested by engineers.

            My point still stands, you just ignored the whole issue. It’s not a question of life or death, it’s about productivity and TCO.

  38. This same trend is present elsewhere, too, e.g., colleges. ~80% of my college classes have been filled with MacBooks of some kind; and, in some cases, this was noted by the professors calling the class an amazing “ad for Apple.” This important demo clearly loves Apple, and that includes not just the iPhone and iPad, but Macs as well.

    And outside of Silicon Valley, nearly every tech enthusiast or geek I know uses a Mac. So it really isn’t just Silicon Valley.

  39. Well Robert,

    You are mis-characterizing this whole thing. Its not about Mac/PC. If you checked you’d note that MAC [computers] sales are off too.

    Everyone doesnt need a PC. Most people get by fine with a notepad device, or a phone. That’s what you’re missing.

    For years Microsoft has pushed its homogeneous solution stacks, and they got progressively more complex, until they got to the point that it was just too much work, and too expensive to invest in.

    Which created a niche for a solution to provide, say, your email and a stock quote for example that didn’t require 2 million dollars worth of software licenses, a staff off 200, and a million dollars worth of Dell servers to support.

    As professionals — I mean pretty much the rest of us actually work, not just pimp some cloud provider and offer jaded and one sided opinions, so I take umbrage at the ‘afficianados’ label — we do whatever we get paid to do, and increasingly that’s not working with some hot off the press, buggy, and sure to be replaced in the next iteration toolset from Microsoft.

    What would we need Windows 8 for?

    And don’t take offense at being called a pimp, you’re probably used to it by now anyway.

    Just sayin.

    T

    1. You don’t know the actual market figures obviously, so you just made them up to suit your reality?

      Mac sales are still growing, not falling at all. The PC market has lost share [probably] due to tablets killing the lower end.

  40. Microsoft is basically today’s IBM. They will just end up selling high cost services for enterprises while other companies innovate.

  41. I bet all of them use Parallels and windows. All the people I know with a Mac have a virtual machine to do real work, so I guess yes, we all care about Windows :)

    1. Nope, not if you develop for the Web, you don’t need Windows. From Ruby to Java, there’s no need for Parallels or Windows.

  42. i am passionate about my apple laptop and Ithings; on the other hand, i build my own desktops. W7 is excellent. i know that most of the planet is still W, and the apple transition is slow but steady. so, what are you thinking?! out here in the sticks, AT&T kicks butt as well. silicon valley is an island, you need to get a realistic perspective. PS love your vision anyway

  43. I don’t get the ‘Macs are more expensive than a PC’ logic, they are two diff things (just like someone in the market for a minivan won’t go to Porsche store to compare). And what’s with the ‘Silicon Valley techies are paid too much’ argument? I think techies elsewhere have more disposable income (way lesser cost of living) than valley.
    Its a mindset, when it comes to buying one or the other.
    Do you value time? After being a Unix user, I was a windows user for 9yrs before I started using Macs. Realized I wasted almost 20% of my time struggling with Windows issues, and I could reclaim that time to be more productive. Valley is about developers who want to do more with the resources they have. Hence the popularity of Macs and Linux.
    Macs, IMO, are real value for money – if you want to be productive, creative, worry-free…. having said that, I think Windows are still easier for lot of normal folks, Macs require some learning curve.

    iPads are a different beast altogether, and shouldn’t be brought into comparison. Its (mostly) a readonly device, good for consuming some fun stuff, but useless as a productivity tool. The guys who walked into VMWare conf with iPad in hand, were prolly playing Angry Birds!

  44. I really don’t understand why this is happening. I use Windows at home and Mac at work and don’t see any difference. Actually, I like Windows more, because it is easier to customize it (anyone tried remapping keys in Mac OS X?) and there’s a lot more free utilities for Windows while even the trivial utility for Mac will cost you money. And prices are outrageous (probably AppStore will change that) – at some moment TextMate cost more than full-fledged IDE.

  45. Here at Virginia Commonwealth University there is at least 3iPad users for every 50 students. There are least 40 percent of students carrying Macs. I get asked constantly why I use a windows netbook, a Macbook and my Android Tablet. They find it odd that I would use both windows and mac. I honestly prefer each for different reasons.

    I use my windows netbook for note taking but when I am on campus all day (I hate using chargers for obvious reasons). I use my Macbook for note taking when I know I will be only away from charger for a few hours. I use my tablet for those classes where attendance is manditoy but I know that I will not be paying attention and browsing the web instead.

    I am a fourth year Business Marketing major and VCU is an artsier school.

  46. My mom could care less about multitasking. She wants to respond to emails and read the news. An iPad or an Android tablet would easily cover all her needs. I only say an Android tablet because her friends always send those damn flash videos to her.

  47. I love Apple hardware… but still use Windows on the MBP. Windows 7 is great for getting work done but my wife uses Apple to consume information.

    Windows = Creation
    Apple = Consuming
    Linux = Enthusiast

    Next time look what is “on” the computers and not the shell. Sure I dual boot, but I never use OSX.

  48. I love Apple hardware… but still use Windows on the MBP. Windows 7 is great for getting work done but my wife uses Apple to consume information.

    Windows = Creation
    Apple = Consuming
    Linux = Enthusiast

    Next time look what is “on” the computers and not the shell. Sure I dual boot, but I never use OSX.

  49. I think the use of a Mac in the tech enthusiast space is more about elitism then technology. What can you do on a Mac that you can’t do on Windows? In fact, Windows is more flexible then the Mac is, has more software available, you don’t have to pay for patches, stability and security issues are virtually gone on Windows 7, and the IE browser is one of the fastest. You can also run Chrome, Firefox, and Safari and a plethora of development tools and IDEs. I look at the Mac when I want to do something and I find one or two choices, I look at Windows and I have 10 or 20. Windows PCs cost less, run faster, and have many more choices of hardware configuration. As a tech enthusiast I can do more experimentation and try out many more technologies using a Windows box when compared to a Mac, period. When I really want to geek out though, Linux is the winner. It is where the real cutting edge stuff is being done.

    In the end it is more about fads and believing that you are better then others because you can afford a pretty, sleek Mac. It is like driving an expensive car around to show how much better off you are then others. It is like the days when all the geeks wore those ugly glasses and pocket protectors. Macs are the new pocket protector…that is really what the headline of this article should say.

    1. Well, just being able to run bash and being able to script endless tedious tasks on great hardware does it for me. I could’ve bought some cheaper hardware and put Ubuntu on it, but the thing with Mac is that I can do all of what I can do on a PC and more.

      Plus I can also run Ubuntu and Windows with Virtual Box. The hardware is just great and in comparison with say the HP Envy (which someone has in the office), the form factor is just pretty amazing. Any other laptop with the same hardware specs that I have on my Macbook is usually huge, noisy and heavy.

      This thing also just works as expected right out of the box. I also love the Fact that GarageBand comes installed, this is a really really cool app if you compose music, or edit music or podcasts. I’ve not found something that’s so friendly and easy to use in Windows or Ubuntu.

      I don’t think it’s a fad at all, if it is, it started around the time Apple switched to Intel, everywhere I started going I saw more and more macs, the fad is still there.

      It’s not about believing you’re better than others. To me, I’m lucky to be able to afford a Mac, I spend probably 10 or more hours a day working in front of my screen, I might aswell work with a great tool. To me, it’s money well spent since I don’t have to deal with many of the headaches Windows users don’t realize they deal with everyday.

      1. I work on Mac and Windows. To me Mac gives me more of a headache. I have bugs on the Mac and I have to pay $30+ to fix them. I try to use wifi and I can’t browse to a non-standard port. I go online to find out how to resolve the issue and I am forced to physically go to a ‘genius bar’. How is that better?

        As for scripting, you have Cygwin, Perl, WSH, Window Task Scheduler etc., etc., etc. You can run other operating systems in Windows Virtual PC. Of course you can’t install OSX because 1) Apple does not allow this in their OS licensing 2) Mac OS X specifically checks to ensure that it is installing on Apple hardware 3) Mac OS X requires that the computer has an APIC (this all is just so friendly to the tech enthusiast, isn’t it?!?). That being said, I’m sure if you do a little searching you will find out that it is possible, even though it violates licensing. What if I want to do something on OSX that is a little different or out of the ordinary (this is common for a true tech enthusiast)? How is that experience on Mac? In a word it is lousy. In fact, it reminds me of supporting computers prior to the Internet. Almost impossible to find the information you really need.

        I recently bought a Toshiba Satellite M645-S4050 for under $700. It has equivalent or better specs then a 13″ Macbook Pro that starts at $1199. I turned it on and it worked. No configuration issues, nothing. It just works. It is not noisy or hot. The form factor is just as nice, if not better. With the savings I can buy a top of the line app for composing or editing music or podcasts if I wanted to but I would probably just download one for free.

        I completely disagree with this… “but the thing with Mac is that I can do all of what I can do on a PC and more.” It is just not true. The number of applications out there for Windows is just leaps and bounds greater then the number of applications out there for the Mac. In fact, I think the number of applications out there for Linux is even greater then for the Mac.

        Also, ‘I’m lucky to be able to afford a Mac’ is code to me for I have plenty of money and can afford to do this when other people can’t. An attempt to be humble about the fact that you have the money to be able to afford to do this. It’s like a guy saying, “I’m just lucky to be able to afford this Mercedes.” Maybe fad is to strong a word. But elitist is not.

        Don’t get me wrong though, I use Windows, Mac, and Linux machines all of the time. They each have their strengths but I think making a statement that Silicon Valley doesn’t care about Windows anymore shows that, perhaps, Silicon Valley needs to rethink what they are doing. From the perspective of a tech enthusiast, tying yourself so completely to one vendor or technology is a bad think and has a negative effect on innovation. Perhaps this indicates that Silicon Valley is losing some of its capability to innovate.

        1. All fair points. People can certainly do everything on other brands, otherwise they’d be out of business.

          In the end a lot of little great details that you can appreciate on the mac amount to a lot for people like me.

          As for working on Windows like a unix minded programmer, the experience is really uncofortable. The cygwin shell doesn’t have a proper look and feel, things like selecting text, copying and pasting are ridiculously broken, I wonder how many hours of my life I’ve spent going to the Menu on top to be able to Mark text because it just doesn’t support it like in Linux or Mac.
          Little things like that add up. Don’t get me started on all the nuances of working on Windows, how it will try to do all it’s updates when you try to shutdown your computer and you need to run with it, let alone having to deal with antivirus software.

          I bet if we went to work together outside, you on your toshiba, me on my mac and both of us didn’t bring a power adapter, I’d be working a few hours after your computer ran out of battery. I’ll take a look at the Toshiba Satellite M645-S4050, sounds great for the price.

          That and other details that got me to buy Macbooks on an essay I wrote a long time ago, the list of reasons keeps growing.

          And I want to make clear that I’m no Apple fanboy, there’s plenty of internet evidence on how much I like to bash on Apple’s flaws on many of their product, most notably the iPadMania which I still don’t get (they seemed to have nailed it with iPad 2 though), and their draconian thinking when it comes to iTunes and their AppStore.

          I also think the title of the post is nice link bait, of course the world and Sillicon Valley still cares a great deal about Windows. 90% of my customers are running on a windows machine and that’s why I still need to use it, however, Robert makes a point with his picture, it’s something we’ve all been noticing when we go out there and meet with developers and web social butterflies, everyone is sporting a macbook these days. I personally think that they’re actually not that expensive.

          Nowadays you can get a decent entry level macbook for about $1,000 so no elitism there.

          I’ll retract my statement that I can do more with the mac, I guess I went a little too far there. However, in terms of out of the box media and software capabilities the price of the Mac might be more because you’re paying for a lot of great software that comes with it (that’s your savings right there, apple just makes sure they nail you with their software before you go somewhere else = lack of freedom)

          Whatever the case, it’s still a Windows World. Windows is still putting the food on the table for the majority out there, it’s just not on the news, everyone seems to be focused on what’s going on in the web, on mobile apps, but the truth is that Windows and a lot of desktop software is still rocking hundreds of millions (if not billions) a year on top of Windows.

          As for paying for repairs, I don’t know where you’re going, that’s one thing that I do love about mac, support on the apple stores has always been free for me (I’ve had fans, keyboards, hardrives, batteries replaced, ipods, headphones,etc. all free), I think that’s also part of the high cost of the machine, Apple makes sure you pay for the computer and spare parts when you pay the full price of the computer.

        2. You make a lot of valid points that I find I want to disagree with but struggle to do just that. So for me the interesting thing is why do I want to disagree with you? I don’t own anything Apple but I do respect the way Apple have innovated like no other company. Reinventing the smart phone, bringing a keyboard free tablet out where companies like Microsoft had failed miserably in the past.

          So while I agree with you that on paper Windows gives you more choices. The experience of using those choices is inferior on Windows. I’m not simply comparing OS X to Windows 7 here, for me its a bigger game than that now. It’s OS X, Windows 7, Windows phone 7, Android/Linux and IOS.

          Taken overall Apple have been innovating over the last few years like no other company. Everyone is playing catch up with Apple. Tablets are all coming to market now that copy ipad. Laptops are influenced by Apple, smart phones are absolutely influenced by Apple.

          It’s perhaps naive to talk about Windows 7 as a platform that’s trouble free now. I count myself as a bit of a nerd that can google my way out of trouble with Windows but trouble does come, nothing like as regular as it did under 98 and then XP and when you factor in the huge shift that’s starting to happen now with tablets and phones taking the place of laptops, a strong case can be made for going with Apple.

          Other companies are copying Apple very well and will create better products, you could and indeed have argued that is so and that’s a great thing I want to see. I’ll probably end up buying a tablet with android at some point when the resolution is high enough that I can treat it as a real replacement for reading magazines. Apple won’t be the first to innovate there (they are stuck with having to double resolution for legacy reasons and that’s hard when you’re at 1024x and have to jump to 2048), that’s already happening with other companies but you have to admit these companies are standing on the shoulders of Apple and incrementally innovating around what Apple have done before.

          Finally, while I agree there is a lot of elitism out there with Apple, the far more important point for me is one you raised about competition. It’s absolutely fantastic that Apple are doing so well right now, as it has to be scaring the hell out of Microsoft and forcing them to bring us better product. Everyone wins when there is real competition, and I think we are starting to see Apple become real competition for Microsoft.

          Long may Linux in all its forms, Apple and Microsoft try to out innovate each other, bring us better products and platforms to geek out on and so in the end I find myself agreeing with a lot of what you’re saying but feel you’re missing the point slightly putting all your eggs in the flexibility basket.

  50. Its the hardware I have been a long time Windows users and bought a mac 2 years ago and the computer is just built better. MS needs to create there own computer from the ground up make it simple, clean and powerful and I think it would have a chance to come back.

  51. I think a lot of this has to do with the hardware. There isn’t a single PC company laptop that even approaches the quality/aesthetics of the Mac laptops. I owned Dells attempt, the Adamo, and it was frankly pathetic in comparison.

  52. What, you don’t have printers in Belgium? ;-)

    Either way, I’m glad you have €3,000 or so to support your approach. I just use an ultralite PC that cost a lot less than an iPad, and use the Alt-Tab key combo….

  53. XP came out in the same time-frame as OS X 10.0 (Cheetah). Since you’ve probably paid good money for Puma, Jaguar, Panther, Tiger, Leopard and Snow Leopard since then, I certainly hope it makes XP look dated! Mind you, so do Vista and Windows 7….

  54. The tech heavy crowd might be all Mac. But it will take a mainstreamed Chrome Notebook to finally say bye bye to Windows. It is about moving the action completely to the browser. Microsoft needs to move to IE10, not Windows 8.

    1. >> The tech heavy crowd might be all Mac. <<

      Not so. There are millions of us (yours truly included) who are tech-heavy and wouldn't touch a Mac. I develop with Visual Studio and have been a developer for 35 years never even coming close to the Mac platform. Forget about saying goodbye to Windows and quit drinking the Apple Kool-Aid. They're both competent platforms – neither is going away. All this fighting over which is "best" is nuts.

      What's great is that there ARE multiple platforms, so pick the one you like and enjoy it. This isn't a race for world dominance. (Or at-least it shouldn't be).

  55. Wow. Made it through all those comments :-)

    What hasn’t been made explicit, and perhaps some people here may not remember all the way back to ancient times, is the concept first [presumably] popularized by Gates: Capture the minds and hearts of the developers, Capture the applications. Capture the applications, capture the marketplace. SV developers can assumed to be the birds in the mineshaft of developer’s platform preferences.

    That said, it may be the Unix’y aspect to OS X that is winning the day, and these developers are not developing apps so much for the Apple platform (Objective C? Give me a break) but the cloud. It just so happens they are doing it on Apple hardware, which may, of course, result in a modicum of apps being developed for Apple hardware as a side effect.

    And, yes, people will ‘work’ on desktops and ‘play’ on tablets. There is a new severe bifurcation of the PC market occurring.

    1. >> That said, it may be the Unix’y aspect to OS X that is winning the day … <<

      Winning what day? Get real. If you get around a group of Apple developers you're going to hear that OS/X is the "only" platform that the 'world is going to'. Get around a similar group of Windows developers and you'll hear the same thing about their platform.

      There is no objectivity to this article or this long argument.

      1. It is not all that complicated or fuzzy. There has been a massive move away from desktop applications (Windows) to cloud applications (and smartphone apps). The majority of cloud applications are unix’y. It is a pain to setup a development environment on a Windows box that resembles the unix’y deployment environment [this is what I do and it is indeed a PAIN]. Therefore it behooves one to have a unix’y box as development hardware. OS X just happens to be a little more comfortable for some people than the other unix’y box alternatives.

        This is not to say that Windows won’t linger around for a long while, and MSFT may figure out a bold way to reinvent Windows to make it more relevent [e.g. turn Windows into a new kind of browser: a massive multiplayer metaverse ala Snowcrash. And Silverlight is a step in this direction]. But it will probably just die a slow death ala most previous large corps [except IBM].

        1. Interesting viewpoint. However I think the death of Windows is being greatly exaggerated. Doesn’t really matter to me, I guess. I can throw a rock in any direction and 9 out of 10 hits will be a Windows box. Until that situation makes massive changes I’ll continue to develop for it.

          Cheers…

  56. I like Windows because it is so easy to make useful peripherals and other hardware that communicates with the operating system. I recently launched a new product for Windows (Google “gizmag and piano” and you’ll probably find it, if you’re interested). Now I’m working on making a Mac version, and I am finding it to be much more difficult and expensive.

    Its wonderful that PC’s are so inexpensive and common — practically disposable!

  57. Why do otherwise sane people promote Windows 7. It’s slow, buggy, a victim of UI churn, and has about 5 improvements (out of 20,000 features) over XP. Oh yeah, and MS removed at least 50 of XP’s features, good ones too, so let’s see: that’s 5 improvements vs. 50 missing features. And slow. And buggy. And stuff has been all shuffled around so that you have to google to find it. And when you do find it, if you’re lucky, it still works the way it worked in XP. If you aren’t lucky, the thing you find has been re-factored just enough so that it no longer makes sense to a person who knows XP, but after a half-hour, or an hour of experimentation or so, you finally figure out how to make it work, and then what? It works, just like, wait for it, it worked in XP. Wow! What an epic win, Redmond!

  58. Macs can never be the dominant brand of PC. At least, not with their current model. They are over priced, and control their hardware. It never ceases to amaze me how people always complain about how unstable Windows is and how stable Mac is. OF COURSE it is! Because they completely control your environment! Windows has to support an infinite number of hardware configurations, so OF COURSE there are going to be issues.

    If Apple opened up the Mac to any hardware, guess what? It would be incredibly unstable, too! That’s why they won’t do it. And THAT is also why they can never be the dominant PC with this model. It would totally kill the hardware market.

    Yes, among the rich of silicon valley, of course they can all afford Macs. But, some of us still like to build our own computers, which you can NEVER do with a Mac.

    All my computers are dual boot Windows 7 / Linux Mint. And they are half the price of a comparable Mac.

    1. I have a Dell Inspiron 1545. I use it constantly for development and everything else I do. The machine runs 16 hours a day (sleeps with me at night) and is seldom shut down. Aside from making normal Windows updates and stuff like that the machine is in a constant state of use. Running Windows 7 Ultimate. It has crashed 0 times since I put it into operation in December ’09. My total investment in the box is less than half of what it would have been with an equivalent Macbook (not that I’d have used a Macbook for development but you get my drift). The hardware is still in nearly new shape even after the beating it takes from my heavy use. I’d say a “stock” PC is a pretty good value. :-)

    2. I have a Dell Inspiron 1545. I use it constantly for development and everything else I do. The machine runs 16 hours a day (sleeps with me at night) and is seldom shut down. Aside from making normal Windows updates and stuff like that the machine is in a constant state of use. Running Windows 7 Ultimate. It has crashed 0 times since I put it into operation in December ’09. My total investment in the box is less than half of what it would have been with an equivalent Macbook (not that I’d have used a Macbook for development but you get my drift). The hardware is still in nearly new shape even after the beating it takes from my heavy use. I’d say a “stock” PC is a pretty good value. :-)

  59. well well well…don’t forget that if there was no PC, there was no MAC or Google, or any industry as is today…. I still use Windows and W7 for all purposes….Window’s the best thing on earth, and no one can take the share…. and about future? don’t ya worry, gates will get windows to the cloud too :)

  60. “NEVER have I even thought about using anything other than a Mac.” That would be why you can’t appreciate the Mac’s limitations….

  61. Here in Northern Europe Macs are everywhere. I guess it’s more about what you can afford, but the product is really great as well.

  62. That’s a very odd measure of a “good” operating system. The number of bugs divided by hardware is not a win for the user!

    The real issue is how well does the OS perform for the average user. In that respect Mac OS X performs a whole lot better, you even admit as much in terms of bugs.

    I challenge your claim that Mac users experience “around the same amount of bugs”. That’s certainly not the reality for Mac users, what bugs I ask. Windows is a different [buggy] world.

    As for hardware architecture; are you forgetting that Mac OS runs on two sets of hardware? Still PowerPC and Intel x86. You’re careless with your facts and probably don’t know much about either platform.

  63. Ok, you say I’m making up sales, yet you say ‘probably’; — who’s full of it here? I could point you to recent articles quoting that Apple is selling fewer Macs, but why bother — you’d rather read sales literature in ‘MacWorld’

    Go ahead, live in your little world.

    1. This is all getting a bit silly. There is nothing to be gained from insulting each other and I’m not just referring to tdavis. As a real geek,bordering on nerd I can’t understand why these discussions have to turn mean and have replies that sound like people are defending slighted daughters.

      This is just hardware and software were discussing. Surely as a techie you can appreciate all the choice we have and understand that we need competition from more companies, not less.

      Imagine a world where only Apple existed. I promise you the innovation would be gone, not needed because who else can you turn to? Same goes for Microsoft and for years we were heading towards that complete monopoly, at least in the OS space. Look how long we were left with XP.

      And everyone is selling less on laptops as the tablet form factor takes over.Apple are doing incredibly well there but those android tablets are out innovating Apple. It’s great fun watching all this unfold in the news and a little sad we all can’t be a little more excited about competition as opposed to being offended by it.

      1. well this is the kind of crap Scoble creates. He’s always been a drama queen, even getting fired at Microsoft for it.

        Now he’s the worlds ‘most influential’ braggart with a job of being, well a braggart. He can’t even have a blog without spattering an ad for his employer at the top, or he’d probably lose this job too. I mean really, any of you that’d do that? Jeesh.

        The world is moving on. I wish they’d move on from all this childishness and pandering to childishness.

        Maybe I’ll pick up a copy of ‘MacWorld’, maybe I’ll just think about what I’m likely to ever read in ‘MacWorld’ and leave it at that.

        Maybe I’ll just think about what Roberts ever going to have to say about anything and let it go at that too.

        Learning anything?

        1. I’m wondering why you are reading Scobles articles really but that’s your prerogative. I find it easy to see how you’d react badly to what Robert writes sometimes. He doesn’t mince his words and comes right out with it. My first introduction to his work was at Channel9, remember those Microsoft videos he did? I found those were excellent, he was both passionate and not afraid to ask the kind of questions I was interested in having answered. Not following the kind of details that had been cleared as OK from some press release. I also learned back then that Robert is a very friendly happy guy. And so when I read his words online, I’m reading them with that happy geek in mind and it colours the text for me. You see a drama queen and I see a happy geek that can’t wait to have his say about something he’s found out or thinks. Who’s right? Beats me,

          I also find he’s very insightful in what he writes and records, or I wouldn’t be following his work I guess.

          1. Well I guess I got trolled. Thats what Scoble does. He doesnt even work in the industry, never really did. At Channel 9 he got paid to cheer-lead the Microsoft thing, here on his blog he’s cheer-leading again, anything that gets him noticed. Why anyone listens amazes me.

            As to the point, the world has moved on from it, he doesn’t want that because its what pays his rent.

            Go figure why he’d want to fuel the fire, if you’re dense.

          2. You are an idiot. While working at Microsoft I often cheerleaded Apple or Google. I don’t work in the industry? I work for Rackspace which hosts more Websites than anyone else. That’s the industry. You have no clue what work I do. Especially if you think I’m a cheerleader. Geesh.

          3. By the way, I was NOT fired from Microsoft. In fact they tried very hard to keep me and, even, gave me a huge raise as I was walking out the door. They’ve tried several times to hire me back, too. But I guess accuracy isn’t your strong point. Contact my former boss Jeff Sandquist to learn the truth. He’s @jeffsand on Twitter.

          4. Whatever. What do you do for Rackspace, are you a developer? no. Youre a cheerleader. They hired you because you have this troll following.

            Go on milk it.

            And I watched the Microsoft thing happen, whether they asked you to resign or told you to GTFO or you would be fired, it doesnt matter.

            You didnt do anything at Microsoft anyway, except cheerlead the dolt that came to channel nine to sit in court and listen to you, well, cheerlead.

            Thats just the facts.

            Eventually people figure stuff out. They figured out Microsoft, and probably eventually will figure you out too.

            I did.

            Tell me, is it better to be an idiot, or a famous idiot?

            I’m not an idiot, and I may not be famous, but I’m sure not a famous idiot.

          5. I don’t like getting into arguments, there just no fun, but I do have to say that as far as what’s being written, you’re the one throwing personal insults around. I’d really look in the mirror if you want to see who the troll is in this thread.

            And as for suggesting Robert doesn’t work in the tech industry. That’s the silliest thing I’ve read since my 6 year old niece texted me asking why sheep didn’t shrink in the rain.

          6. I don’t like getting into arguments, there just no fun, but I do have to say that as far as what’s being written, you’re the one throwing personal insults around. I’d really look in the mirror if you want to see who the troll is in this thread.

            And as for suggesting Robert doesn’t work in the tech industry. That’s the silliest thing I’ve read since my 6 year old niece texted me asking why sheep didn’t shrink in the rain.

          7. Ok, name me one thing he’s built? Tell me why he’s got that adv tacked on the top of th blog? Because that’s why they hired him.

            I just stated that PC’s and Mac sales are off, and its because the old way is dead. Then the trolls started in.

            People like Robert that never really did anything, but they follow people on Twitter so they have a right to speak.

            And I know what Robert does. He mouths off, and mouthed off about Ballmer at Microsoft being dense, or ugly, and he may be both, but only an idiot puts that on a public blog about your boss’s boss’s boss’s (etc) boss.

            So I’ve proven, he’s never built a thing, and that he’s an idiot.

            He’s proven he’s a troll all by himself.

            So, back to my point.

            Microsoft is dead, Robert wants to cash in on the death by hyping it up.

            The PC is dying. All you *real developers out there, and there might be a few that would read anything Robert said, wise up.

            The days of DLLs COM COM+ DCOM and pretty much anything else Robert ever cheerleaded as the best thing since his mother stopped breast feeding him are gone.

            Why do you read about the same dead troll arguments from Robert. He’s got no cred.

            Move on.

          8. You have issues you need to work out. Just not with me.

            I’ll let the lolcat take it from here.

          9. Like I said, I didnt start the troll.

            Resorting to trolling images is lame.

            I also note you dont refute any of it.

            By troll rules, I win.

            SUCKS 2BU. /rolls eyes

            Like I said, why anyone reads any of this is beyond me.

          10. Thanks! You can’t deny the impact of those pictures, can you? The Computer History Museum is filled with companies that used to have lots of market share. Or, just ask Nokia whether market share matters. It doesn’t.

  64. How can you justify making an argument about a tool that, in your own words, you admit that you have never even thought about using.

    “(drag and drop is soooo much better than, however it is that Windoze users do things)” – How would you know if you havent used it?

    I dont like macs, I like Windows, shoot me down in flames for it if you wish, but I use both regularly; and i prefer using Windows.

  65. That’s pretty much how I view the iPad – as a big iPod Touch (or iPhone). Nice box but if you’re using an iPhone already it just seems like an extra gadget to carry ’round. I can see why people like it for reading and stuff but I find the iPhone4′s “retina” display very readable so I do all my reading there (if not on my laptop).

  66. in Europe? I think you should stick to your part of Europe. In my region of Northern Europe Macs, iPhones and iPads are everywhere.

    The prices are high, but so are our salaries…

  67. I am not sure what quality of photographer that you are but. The mac has fallen way behind in this regard. I agree the mac is way overpriced for what you get. The quality in the newer macs are also really poor. How many out there have gone through three hard drives already, too many to count.

  68. I’m honestly not sure why so many tech geeks buy Macbooks. I picked up a white 13″ Macbook in 2007 and still use it at home, but (no matter what rabid fanboys say) it certainly didn’t offer as much bang per buck as a similarly-specced PC. A lot of people seem to be won over by the stylishness of Apple gear, which to me feels very sleazy and airheaded.
    The only real win for the Mac is having an underlying Unix OS and the usual set of tools, as well as Macports and Fink to help bridge the gap between OS X and the easy package management of Debian/Ubuntu/etc.

    Regarding iPads, I don’t think I’ll ever buy one after experiencing the evil, controlling hand of Apple trying to restrict how I use my iPod in so many ways. Why can’t I just write a short program, compile it with gcc and upload it to the device? I have to use XCode? I have to PAY APPLE a yearly fee to upload my own software to my own device? No thanks. Will get an Android phone/tablet next time…

    1. My use for Apple is limited to my iPhone4 (which is excellent) and my wife’s iPod touch. They’re great devices. I don’t worry about “jailbreaking” them because these are boxes that I just want to work with no fanfare – and they do work. If I wanted to do anything else like development for them, however, forget it.

    2. My use for Apple is limited to my iPhone4 (which is excellent) and my wife’s iPod touch. They’re great devices. I don’t worry about “jailbreaking” them because these are boxes that I just want to work with no fanfare – and they do work. If I wanted to do anything else like development for them, however, forget it.

  69. I still use Windows and that too XP at that, because I don’t care much about the OS anymore. The only apps I am using actively on my desktop are chrome and firefox. For these apps it doesn’t make much of a difference which OS I’m using.
    To use an analogy, I don’t care if my car runs on diesel or petrol, I just need to commute that’s all =)

  70. Christine, I wonder how many Mac users go under the hood? A college-age relative of mine has a Mac, and that relative, while using the Mac applications for video editing and the like, would probably never dream of muckying around in *nix or dual-booting.

  71. That doesn’t surprise me. Same model as I use. PC and iPhone4. The iPhone connects to our Exchange Server flawlessly – works even better than the Blackberry I had. I’m a Windows developer myself and this combination works great.

  72. Aww, don’t worry about Randolph – his mother dressed him funny. He doesn’t have anything better to do than post nonsense. :-)

  73. Concur, Bob. I’ve been a developer for 35 years. I have never had any trouble finding work to do for the Windows platform.

    Don’t get me wrong, the Apple platform is also an excellent one but it doesn’t have nearly the penetration (or the flexibility) that the Windows platform does. Let the Apple fanbois say all the want to about its superiority but the proof is in the numbers. Go walk around in any office supply store, Best Buy, what have you. Apple has a presence, but about a 10% presence. Everything else is being developed for Windows. People don’t care about Windows? Uh huh … just keep drinking the Kool Aid folks.

    All the talk about the Mac being “higher quality” than an equivalent PC reminds me of the old Amway business (which has since morphed into Quixtar or whatever). Piece-by-piece, item-by-item you compare the products and find that the “Amway” product (Apple in this case) is 3 times as expensive and of equivalent (or lesser) quality. I just checked the pricing of a laptops on Best Buy. Machines made by Apple seem to be priced 2.5x the equivalent PC with exactly the same specifications. EXACTLY the same specs.

    I’m not against Apple, not at all. I have an iPhone4 and love it. But don’t try to convince me that the Mac is worth 2.5x the price of that Dell sitting right next to it with exactly the same specs. I’ve been at this for far too long to be fooled by that nonsense.

  74. I don’t think anybody in the rest of the world cares about Windows anymore. But that’s not to say they care about OS X instead. People are getting tired of platforms.

    You’re onto something, Robert, with people getting excited about iPads, but that brand loyalty isn’t going to last much longer. Other tablets will start matching its capabilities, and when one of them has an advantage over another, it’ll just be frustrating. iPad users will look at Android/WebOS/whatever tablets and ask, why doesn’t mine have [x] that the other guy has? Android users will look at iPads/WebOS/whatever tablets and ask, why doesn’t mine have [x]? WebOS users will look at iPads/Android/whatever tablets, and ask why doesn’t mine have [x]? And then people will get tired all over again.

    That’s why VMWare is getting so big, because, like you always say, it’s the apps that matter. Or, in a broader sense, it’s the capabilities that matter. Who cares whether you have a desktop, a laptop, a tablet, a phone, a gigantic touchscreen desk, a gesture-controlled thingamabob, a cranial implant, or some kind of biological computer grown in a petri dish? Shouldn’t they all be capable of executing the same tasks, or at least augmenting one another seamlessly? Why should we have to worry about whether X app can run on Y OS with Z hardware bells-and-whistles?

    Nobody cares about Windows, nobody cares about Macs, and nobody cares about iPads, even if they don’t know that yet. All they care about is stuff just working, without having to worry about petty brand differences.

  75. Although the point about the things being ‘moved around’ is valid. Things that you could just right-click->Properties in XP are now at least 5 clicks and 4 windows away in Vista/7, which is simply ridiculous.

  76. Example: There is no reason for Network and Sharing to be in my way when I need to get to the properties of a network adapter or wireless network. This was simple and fast in XP. Actually XP was nigh on PERFECT if you wanted to find something system related quickly and there were several ways to do it. Windows 7 has made some routes unnecessarily difficult to navigate.

    Before you retort, allow me to point out that this is a fact, not an opinion.

  77. Whenever I look at a Mac, the first thing I notice is my reflection in the glossy screen. Until Apple fixes this, there’s no way I’ll go any further in exploring whether a Mac might be for me.

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  79. I don’t know about photography, but he actually hit the nail on the head on a couple of points. The OSX window manager is way behind Windows 7, maximize is just plain broken, and I miss the window key + arrow to move apps between monitors. The alt-tilde to switch between windows in an app is just ridiculous, and it’s mind boggling that macs don’t support dual external monitors, that one kept me away for a long time. That said, until about a year ago when I switched to ubuntu, I was an avid windows user, with 11 years working at Microsoft. Now I use macbooks pretty much exclusively for all of my computing, but particularly for development. Why? Posix and sh, cygwin just doesn’t cut it. Homebrew is nice too. About the only crappy thing about OSX for software development is the xcode mangled gcc, but I must say that it hasn’t been a problem for me yet. Anyone who says PC’s are better for development than Macs just doesn’t know what they’re talking about. Unless you’re building windows software (who does that any more?) you shouldn’t do development on windows.

  80. Most software that I typically use on an OS is available on a Mac, but I have to get an app for it on Windows (cygwin). Seriously, how can they go to sleep at night knowing that their OS doesn’t do SSH?

  81. I remember seeing a photo in some magazine showing a majority students in the University lecture all using MacBooks, and that was a few years ago.