About 1.5 years ago, I made the switch from SuSE Linux to a MacBook Pro running OS X 10.5. Here are some brief notes I made regarding the transition:
- OS X’s Spaces gives you virtual desktop functionality. I don’t think it offers the same depth of customization, but it works just fine for my needs. One feature I like is to left-click and grab a window, then use ctrl-[1-8] to move the window to one of my eight “spaces”. On my Linux system, I had to navigate a menu to accomplish the same thing.
- The program that I replaced Gaim/Pidgin with is Adium. However, I now see that Pidgin appears to have an OS X client…
- I miss being able to copy text by highlighting, and paste via the middle mouse button. With OS X you need to do
command-cfor copy and
- Speaking of the
commandkey, it annoys me. I’ve been trained my entire life to use
ctrl, but OS X makes you move one or two keys over to use a different key. Which brings me to the next topic…
endkeys have the obnoxious behavior of jumping you to the top and bottom of a window, as opposed to the start or end of a single line. You can change the behavior in Cocoa apps (more succinct info), but all 3rd party applications (Eclipse, Firefox, etc) seem to require individual adjustment via other means.
- Not having focus-follows-mouse is incredibly painful; Steve Yeggae agrees.
- Quick notes on the hardware:
- Two fingers to scroll, pinch to zoom out, un-pinch to zoom in – I like the multi-touch pad, even though trackballs are typically “how I roll”.
- The auto-dim/brighten of the display and the backlit keyboard is really cool.
- The display is gorgeous.
- The case gets uncomfortably hot for a device that theoretically sits in your lap.
- The only way to access the
altkey is via the
- If you have more than one user, do yourself a favor and
Preferences -> Accounts -> Login Options -> Show fast user switching menu
- iTunes is disappointing in that it has no native FLAC or OGG support. Additionally, iTunes servers are apparently “listen-only”; you can’t copy files!
While OS X certainly has a proprietary, somewhat locked-down feel to it, the slick and user-friendly interface more than makes up for it. This is the same reason why I usually run Opera instead of Firefox – I prefer a high-quality computing experience.