This Girl Got a Mac – First Impressions

By August 23, 2012Tech

After years of saving and begging this girl, yes ME, finally got a Mac. Why would I make such an expensive purchase when we already have an awesome HP Touchsmart that the whole family loves?

PC to Mac Book Pro

Why Mac?

First, I was frustrated with video editing on my PC and really wanted to dive into iMovie and perhaps Final Cut Pro in the future. Sophia wants to have her own little talk show and I want to dive into video reviews as well as begin to vlog more.

Second, we happen to have other Apple gear. A lot of it. And in spite of the million things I tried, my PC just didn’t play nice. Now, I should say that it is Apple’s fault. Now that I have one I know this. This baby just doesn’t like anything of the Google or Android or PC species. We were okay with our iPods. It got tougher with the iPad.  Then, when I ditched my blackberry for an iPhone my calendar because impossible to sync.  I love Outlook and my husband hates Google calendar.  Everything that popped up on my iPhone from him disappeared somewhere.  When the cloud came out it just got worse.  I tried to sync with my PC but nothing went right.  Then my iTunes started going wrong. The straw that broke the camel’s back was Apple TV.  We want to cancel cable and have all of our media go through the Apple TV.  We simply got to the point where we knew a Mac would do this easily without a bunch of workarounds while our beloved PC was thwarted at every corner by the Apple.

Mac and PC Won't Talk

That’s it.  Nothing fancy. I just wanted the stuff we have to work.  And I want to make little movies.

First Impressions of the MacBook Pro

Clicking is  a Mystery

After a few minutes trying to go through the setup screens and being unable to click on anything I wanted to throw this thing out the window.  I had lots of people on twitter offer to catch it.  Clearly, there is something great in this little computer.  When I got in to the computer I didn’t know where anything was (and I still struggle after a week) and it took me awhile to figure out how to copy and paste.

My keyboard shortcuts end up screwing everything up so I need to figure out how to get them back.  I don’t want to command C for copy I want to control C.  My hands will not re-learn this.  They may be stubborn.  So be it.  This is a work in progress.

Downloading is Strange

Downloading things is strange, and programs I LOVE for the PC gave me little MAC errors because they aren’t in the App Store.  Seriously? Bite me. My brand new Samsung Galaxy III has been rejected by the OSX Mountain Lion as has all of the software Android developed to play nice with Macs.  Boo to that.  (This phone rocks and I will tell you more about my Verizon Wireless Ambassadorship soon!)

I can’t even figure out how to save anything to a location I can find without using the finder.  How the heck do I even access my desktop?  Does that same concept even exist?

Apple Loves Its Own

As far as Apple devices, this is smooth sailing.  The cloud and photo stream finally work and while I accidentally deleted all of the pictures from my iPhone when I hooked it up to a new iTunes they are safe in the Mac so I’m okay.  Seriously, it’s like a whole little happy Apple family and it may sound silly, but that will help our household work.  I don’t have time for bickering between my devices.  I have three kids.  That is enough!

Size and Looks

Overall, it is small but heavy.  I got the 13 inch MacBook Pro with 2.9GHz dual-core Intel Core i7 processor with 8GB of memory.  I was very appreciate of the Apple staff who assured me that in no way did I need the retina display or the advanced video cards.  I am not a gamer, and I would bet that most of my readers are not either.  I like the look of the Mac and that I have something small enough to travel with.  My last laptop was 17″ and was sort of a bear.

I did purchase the One-on-One for $99 for a year.  I can get free training on anything I need in person at the store.  Hello iMovie people, here I come!

First Impressions of iPhoto

Um, get me some Picasa stat!  I love that this brings my photos in automatically from my devices but it does nothing with my Samsung photos and the way it organizes things baffles me.  While I may take the time to figure it out I may just let it do it’s thing and use it when I need to.  As soon as I downloaded Picasa all my photos were nicely organized and easy to manage.  I could rename folders and files and I was happy.  I could Google+ to my heart’s delight.  If anyone knows anything super special about iPhoto, please let me know!  What tricks does it have?

First Impressions of iMovie

So beautifully confusing.  It just doesn’t work like standard video editing programs.  The words are different.  The effects are there but they are not called the same things.  Instead of working in files and films you are working on projects and events.  There are so many features but so few buttons it takes time to learn.  I read so much on this before my purchase and I was still shocked. See?  There are only a few buttons on the actual video.  You need to know how to click and drag (which I still suck at) so it is a steep learning curve.

iMovie Screen Shot

Still, I finally found this AMAZING tutorial and will share it with you in my next post on this major transition – must haves for the MacBook Pro!

What the Mac Doesn’t Have

Clearly, the Mac does not have windows nor does it come with the standard basic versions of Microsoft products.  I am just used to having those and for more than decade we have functioned as Microsoft and Windows family.  I know you can spend money to make your Mac look like Windows and can even run virtual desktops.  I am not going to do this.  I want to get to know this baby on her own terms.  Of course, I still have a PC to run to when I need a good friend.  So, it is Mountain Lion for me but what about my programs?  I have no idea where all of the accessories and stuff are hidden on here.  I am mainly using this as my online hub, but at some point I will figure it out.

Clearly, I am not in love, yet.

Missing Microsoft

Does this have a basic text editing program like Word?  I don’t even know where I would find it! I missed Microsoft Office so much it will be on my must haves list.  Oh to have my spreadsheets and my Outlook and my PowerPoint!

Lucky for us…

Right Now You Can Get Microsoft Office at 15% Off

Buy Office Home and Student 2010, Office for Mac Home and Student 2011 (3 pack), Office University 2010 or Office for Mac University 2011 between August 8th and Sept 14th and get 15% off.


I Might Fall in Love with the Mac

It isn’t love at first site, but everyone tells me it will happen and it will be forever.  This s clearly a relationship that takes work.  I am up for it but I will need a little help from my friends!

Tell me what you love and hate about your Mac and if you are a PC tell me if you want to switch or why you are staying with your trusted old friend.  I know I will not be without a PC for a very long time, so you are not alone!

Stay tuned because I have some great must haves for Mac users coming up!  I’ve some simple things that made me feel so much better!

Join the discussion 7 Comments

  • Tracy Mangold says:

    I switched from PC to Mac back in 2007. I wouldn’t go back if you paid me. It took me a week to adjust and after that, it was smooth sailing. For documents, you have Pages, instead of Excel, we have Numbers and rather than Powerpoint, we have Keynote. All of it is very intuitive. What you pay more for up front when you buy Apple, you save in the long run when it comes to programs. Apple software will cover up to five computers in a household if you buy the family plan. From a creative standpoint, I love what Apple offers. I started with a MacBook and now have an iMac and a MacBook Pro. I love them both. I think once you get used to it, you’ll be fine. When it comes to customer service, I’ve had only good experiences with them. I hope you enjoy your mac. Oh and you can get Bootcamp which allows you to boot both Windows and OSX on your mac.
    Tracy Mangold recently posted… “If I Only Had a Brain”My Profile

    • Brittany says:

      Thank you! I was a banker for years and I live in my excel spreadsheets so I just can’t give that up. The macros that I have built on my pc seem impossible to replicate on this mac but we shall see! Someone told me about pages…I just can’t even find it! I am sure I will love imovie and final cut pro as soon as I learn them. Do you use iPhoto? It seems so disorganized versus Picasa for handling folders and stuff. I guess I am just still confused by the events concept. I hope I love this machine and I can’t wait to learn more!

  • Candice says:

    I just got my MacBook four days ago and only have a couple of hours a day to look at it, so I’m really still learning, but I like it and just have this sense that in time I will adore it. My sister’s had a MacBook for years (she gets one through her job as a teacher, lucky duck). She swears by iPhoto and says she’d never go back to a PC for anything.

    I haven’t had a computer of my own for over a year now, maybe a year and a half or more? So I’m still getting used to just having a computer regularly. LOL I think I forgot half of what I used it for, so the Launchpad is overwhelming to me – do I really want to try all that? Little by little I’ll figure it out.

    Pages is in the app store. I think it’s $20.
    Candice recently posted… Two and a quarterMy Profile

  • Josh says:

    Good luck! Just keep playing with it and you’ll find the love. I switched about 3 years ago, and I couldn’t be happier. I’m a teacher, and now with deeper iCloud integration, it makes things SO much easier. I still use Word and Powerpoint from time to time, but most everything I do is in Pages and Keynote. In terms of iPhoto, I love it. Downloaded Picasa a while ago, thinking I might like it better (I used to use it before I used a Mac), but I really don’t like it. Might even delete it soon. I find iPhoto uh more intuitive and easy to manipulate. And iMovie? I love it! I keep learning more, playing more, and reading new stuff on the web to try out.

    As with most tech stuff, just play with it all more. As long as you don’t hit ‘trash’ you’re usually ok, especially if you’re just playing around with some throwaway video or photos. That way you can experiment and see what’s possible. Also you get to see what doesn’t work for you. 🙂

    Good luck!
    Josh recently posted… Summer WeddingMy Profile

  • Shell says:

    I hear so much good about Macs, but then I hear people saying the same things you do- and I just justify getting one! I think I’ll stick with what I have for now! Not that I wouldn’t try to catch yours if you did decide to toss it out the window!
    Shell recently posted… Things They Can’t Say: By Word of Mouth MusingsMy Profile

  • I’ve been a Mac user since 1987 and would be happy to help you figure out some of the questions you ask here. Let’s combine that with the wine 🙂

    But for starters, here are some quick answers:

    Any applications you may be looking for (the pre-loaded ones) will be in the Applications folder (which can be found in your “home” folder). The basic text editing app is called TextEdit and will be in that folder.

    iWork is Apple’s answer to Office. It works amazingly well, is better for people who like things to be well-designed, and costs insanely less money. You can get the whole iWork suite (Pages, Numbers, Keynote) at the App Store for $60.

    Finder is the home base for, um, finding things. Click on Finder and then choose Finder Preferences. Click on the “sidebar” tab and set up the things you would like to see in your Finder windows. In my “favorites” I have Desktop, Documents, Home folder, Applications, Downloads, Dropbox, and shortcuts to important work folders (which all live in Documents). You can add a folder on the fly to the Favorites section by hitting command + t.

    Anything else, let’s get together 🙂

    Welcome to Mac. Even if you’re not convinced yet, we’re happy to have you.
    UpsideUp Laurie recently posted… How To Public SpeakingMy Profile

  • Alison

    I switched to a MacBook Air early this year, after water destroyed my faithful Dell. The only reason I did was because it was lying around unused, after my husband bought it for work and stopped using it.

    It took a little while to get used to the OS, how things work (cut and paste, who would have thought that I’d have to relearn how to do that!) and where things are. But now that I’ve sort of mastered it, I love it!

    I can still use a PC if I want to, and I have no problems switching between the 2 at all. BUT I’ve gotten attached to my Mac and I do like that it’s light and sleek.
    Alison recently posted… One On OneMy Profile

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