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The Spam Thread!

Earlier today, I was reading question and answers on Quora about the whole PC vs Mac debate. I'm still curious as to why designers gravitate towards Macs, and I'm starting to see the answer.

Pro Mac people contend the usual points that macOS is easier to use, prone to less viruses, and the hardware just looks cooler than PC stuff. Less technically minded people appreciate the simplicity of everything from hardware to software and how tight the Apple ecosystem is. They also state "tradition" because Mac's were apparently the first computers to get widely used in the desktop publishing industry. In the PowerPC era, Macs did have a leg up in terms of computing power, from what I have heard.

However, the PC users are noting that Windows and PCs in general have caught up to the Mac in terms of usability and looks. Look at the MS Surface Studio. It's my dream computer, actually; a sleek looking PC that doubles as a massive drawing tablet. Too bad it starts at $3,000 and it's just as locked down as Apple's computers.

In the end, it just boils down to personal preference. Some people prefer the tightly integrated Apple world, while others want more control of their systems and gravitate towards PC. The argument that Macs are better for graphic design is moot nowadays since Adobe programs run on both, and you can easily get a 5K display for a PC.

I have nothing against Apple users since computers are just tools, no matter which side you're on. But I do wish that Apple would stop exploiting their users. Many of them have been loyal Apple users for over a decade or more, and Apple uses that loyalty to try and milk money from them by costly "repairs" and planned obsolescence. Want to run macOS Catalina? Too bad if you have a 2011 or earlier Mac. You can patch Catalina to run on an unsupported Mac, but the average Apple user isn't going to do that.

At times I do want a current generation iMac as a daily driver since I want to learn macOS and finding the aesthetic designs to be nice, but I can never commit myself to buy one because said designs prevent user upgrades. Service is also a nightmare. If your Mac breaks down, your only option is to send it to Apple or an authorized repair center. An older iMac is preferable since it's relatively easier to remove the display to get at the internals. (still a delicate process though) But the 2011 and earlier models can only run up to High Sierra without patches. A PC from the same age can run Windows 10 without many problems.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E6WLn-pUN7o
I'll leave this here. Some people cling on to older Macs for far longer than PCs it seems. This video is a little promo from one of the illustrators I follow on Instagram. It was recorded in 2018, and said artist still uses a 2007 to 2009 era iMac as shown in the background. That's neat and all since it prevents e-Waste, but those era iMacs can only run up to El Capitan without a patch. Security is a bit of a concern too. Firefox and Chrome still run on older macOS dating back to Yosemite, but it's going to be a matter of time before Yosemite/El Cap get dropped. Thus, when I get my retro iMac of the same vintage, I'll limit web browsing on macOS, and leave WinXP cut off from the web.

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Apple's business model reminds me of what Fisk Johnson of SC Johnson said in an interview about his family's company, e.g. why he would never sell his soul to Wall Street out of principle. He obviously has a business to run which is Johnson's Wax, but his family has no intention of printing more money than they already have amassed.

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https://mspoweruser.com/microsofts-lates...-10-users/

Once again, an MS update that works fine on my systems causes chaos for others. User profiles are being replaced by temporary ones during updating, resetting desktop and start menu settings. Both of my computers took the update without problems.

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(02-14-2020, 01:18 PM)cpd2009 Wrote:  https://mspoweruser.com/microsofts-lates...-10-users/

Once again, an MS update that works fine on my systems causes chaos for others. User profiles are being replaced by temporary ones during updating, resetting desktop and start menu settings. Both of my computers took the update without problems.
Now tell me why some still cling on to Windows 7 despite it being practically a Russian roulette to use security-wise.

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LGR does make for entertaining YouTube viewing. Here's his latest video if you haven't seen it already...

This gives you an idea on what kinds of odd old software I plan to run on the retro iMac thing once it's all set up later this spring. I already own some software like this on CD-ROM from companies like "Expert Software" and "Cosmi". Stuff like that always interested me since I wanted to use alternatives to popular software programs back in the day. While my family used Internet Explorer, I used Netscape or Mozilla. Instead of MS Office, I use Softmaker Office on my modern PCs. (Softmaker Office appears to be much more stable than that LoveLetter thing above Tongue )

It was very easy to find this kind of shovelware at local retailers in America until at least the mid-2000s. I'm not talking about the shovelware PC game section at Walmart, but rather small independent stores carrying loads of knockoff productivity and utility software in addition to games. My local RadioShack store stocked Cosmi-branded software and I recall getting a desktop publishing application, some weird game collections, and a typing tutor program. Cosmi felt the need to use DRM on most of their discs in the form of finding a specific word in a paragraph in the jewel case leaflet. I wrote the passwords down in disc-safe marker on the CD itself. Another company was Expert Software. A local department store stocked their titles around the same time the RadioShack had Cosmi stuff. The Expert stuff was much older though, and a bit more buggy. These days you can sometimes find these titles at thrift stores, but you can readily find these brand new on eBay for good prices.

I love foxes, especially the one in my avatar.
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The personal computing boom sure has brought us a lot of, um, interesting software over the years. Taken UpToEleven when CD-ROMs came out and less-scrupulous publishers would exploit the media's immense storage capacity by kanging stuff off BBSes and selling them as their own. While many content authors of the day are understandably upset about it, there's an intriguing side effect of preserving what would otherwise succumb to link rot and defunct web hosts.

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(02-15-2020, 12:09 PM)huckleberrypie Wrote:  The personal computing boom sure has brought us a lot of, um, interesting software over the years. Taken UpToEleven when CD-ROMs came out and less-scrupulous publishers would exploit the media's immense storage capacity by kanging stuff off BBSes and selling them as their own. While many content authors of the day are understandably upset about it, there's an intriguing side effect of preserving what would otherwise succumb to link rot and defunct web hosts.
I got one such disc for Christmas 1999... "1000 Hot Games" from The Learning Company, of all things. Originally released by Softkey, this disc makes use of something called "Softkey CD Guide" which is your method to browse the disc contents and run or install a shareware game of your choice. As expected, these "hot games" are a whole bunch of Shareware games likely gathered from BBSes as you mentioned, and the fact that these are shareware is only in small print on the back of the jewel case. Perhaps once I can run the CD Guide again, I will do some kind of screenshot tour of what kinds of games are on this disc. The disc won't run on modern Windows, but I was able to get it to run on XP 32bit just fine.

That also brings up another sad thing about old shareware. Who knows if the developers are even still alive? Even if they are alive, will they actually care enough to send you the full version if you pay the asking price these days? Would they even still have the source code or full versions on hand?

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Softkey... Now that you mentioned it, they aren't exactly the most reputable company even in its time as what LGR mentioned in his review of American Girls Premiere.

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(02-15-2020, 11:11 PM)huckleberrypie Wrote:  Softkey... Now that you mentioned it, they aren't exactly the most reputable company even in its time as what LGR mentioned in his review of American Girls Premiere.
Yeah, they specialized in such shareware discs. It's amazing just how big Softkey got, yet I knew them from when they were known as TLC. I do have AG Premiere on disc, but I think it's still back at my old home. I'd have to find it first, and if I'm not mistaken, it still runs fine under XP, right? I recall you had to modify the game code to get the program to run on newer Windows versions.

I love foxes, especially the one in my avatar.
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(02-16-2020, 12:09 PM)cpd2009 Wrote:  
(02-15-2020, 11:11 PM)huckleberrypie Wrote:  Softkey... Now that you mentioned it, they aren't exactly the most reputable company even in its time as what LGR mentioned in his review of American Girls Premiere.
Yeah, they specialized in such shareware discs. It's amazing just how big Softkey got, yet I knew them from when they were known as TLC. I do have AG Premiere on disc, but I think it's still back at my old home. I'd have to find it first, and if I'm not mistaken, it still runs fine under XP, right? I recall you had to modify the game code to get the program to run on newer Windows versions.
Yeah, though it was AG Dress Designer which had a more serious compatibility issue.

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