As it’s been three weeks since I made my transition to Mac and bought a 13-inch MacBook Pro, I thought it would be useful to share some thoughts on how it’s going so far.
One of my biggest concerns was adjusting to a touchpad after many years of using a TrackPoint. While the multi-finger touch options are really useful, especially for browsing and such, for heavy text work, I still keep reaching for my TrackPoint, because removing my hands from the keyboard for navigation doesn’t feel natural. I also find myself inadvertently zooming in and out because of the pinch motion.
I find the MacBook Pro’s keyboard to be functional, but the flat keys still don’t feel right to me as I have always liked a sturdy tactile IBM keyboard. At this point, I think I’ve nearly reached my same typing speeds, so I don’t believe it’s adversely affecting my productivity, but it still feels awkward.
Conversion to using the Cmd key from Ctrl for shortcuts hasn’t been a huge issue for me, but relearning the new shortcut keys for text selection is an ongoing process (thanks to everyone for the tips in the comments of my previous post). I’m also finding that having to use Fn+delete to match the behavior of my old delete key still trips me up quite a bit.
The screen is probably the most significant upgrade from my old laptop. Even though it’s smaller in size, the widescreen format and higher resolution let me see more of websites and documents, while the brightness and clarity of the display is just astounding compared to how my dull and off-color my old screen was. It’s a joy to work with and everything just seems to look better.
The hardware itself is quite light and manageable. I love how quickly it wakes up and makes itself ready to work. The long battery life is quite nice and while I haven’t really tested or timed how long it lasts I find that for my regular work flow it really won’t be an issue for me.
The biggest issue so far has been the change in software. While many of my day-to-day staples have Mac counterparts, they often work differently. Sometimes even just the UI differences are enough to just make me feel “off.” For the rest of my software, where a direct Mac counterpart isn’t available, I’m still finding replacements and learning them. I was prepared for it to be an ongoing process, though, and even though I am taking a productivity hit, it’s also giving me the opportunity to evaluate and review a lot of software that I had only been able to read about prior to my switch.
Overall I am finding the experience to be enjoyable and positive. There are a lot of quirks, a lot of frustrations, but some nice features and benefits as well. I can’t say I like it better than my PC, but I’m not hating it.
How was your transition to Mac? How long did it take for you to be hooked?