My First Mac

A lot of people are writing about their first Mac, so why not me too?

My first Mac — the very one I’m sitting in front of as I type this — is this one:

Screen Shot 2014 01 25 at 1 18 36 PM

My first Mac is the same Mac that I bought almost 6 years ago, in October 2008. It was among the first aluminum unibody Macs, the design of which is still seen today in the MacBook Pros. (In fact, Apple added the “Pro” surname to the MacBook in 2009.) The aluminum MacBook was introduced at a special event on Apple’s campus, which also happened to be the one and only instance when — to my knowledge, anyway — Jony Ive spoke publicly.

My MacBook was the high-end model, and shipped with these specs:

  • 13.3-inch LED-backlit display (native resolution = 1280x800)
  • 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo chip
  • 2GB RAM (since upgraded to 4GB)
  • 250GB hard disk drive
  • Nvidia GeForce 9400M graphics
  • 2 USB ports, 1 MiniDisplayPort, Gigabit Ethernet, SuperDrive
  • Weighs 4.5 pounds and is 0.95" thin

My MacBook also shipped with OS X 10.5 Leopard, which came with a physical disc that I still have in the computer’s original box. This Mac has since been through Snow Leopard, Lion, Mountain Lion, and now runs 10.9 Mavericks. And it runs it just fine. While this machine is ancient by current standards and should theoretically be replaced, I’m actually very proud of the fact that I’ve been able to get so much life out of it. It definitely is showing its age, but my MacBook continues to serve me well. I don’t do anything that makes it choke — well, Skype notwithstanding — so it keeps churning along reliably despite its old age. I’m hoping to this year replace it with a 13-inch Retina MacBook Pro, but for now, this is my Mac.

I was a Windows user before buying my MacBook, having only used Macs sparingly in the computer labs at school. My reasoning for buying this Mac was a (a) because I wanted one; and (b) because I wanted a laptop that I could take to classes with me. I switched to the Mac full-time in March 2011, and I’ve never looked back. I love it. I’m not a “power user”, though: things like Automator and AppleScript, while great, aren’t features I’m very interested in. Truthfully, I don’t use my Mac that much unless I’m at home, because my iOS devices, particularly the iPad, are my workhorses now. Put another way, I’ll use my Mac when I’m at home, in my bedroom, but I won’t seek it out except for certain tasks, like when recording my podcast.

It’s great to hear that Apple thinks so highly of the Mac, and that it won’t be overshadowed and/or subsumed by the cash cow that is iOS. While I use the latter with much higher frequency, I still love the Mac for all the ways that it isn’t Windows. And when the time comes that I do finally retire this six-year-old dinosaur, I’ll put it away near my original iPhone and iPad, because it has too much sentimental value for me to part ways with it. I’ll just look at it fondly, and wonder how I ever managed with such a shitty display into 2014.