Meet Winston, my new iMac.
A few weeks ago, the backlight on my iBook started acting funny. I was worried about this, because I knew it could cost a pretty penny to fix that. A trip to the Apple Store confirmed that it would be close to $400 to get it fixed.
At that point, I figured, you're starting to be in the new computer range. That wasn't ideal, but I'd bee planning on replacing the laptop in the relatively near future anyway, so I started shopping.
At first, I was convinced I needed a pimped out Powerbook that would give me the horsepower to run a bajillion apps all at once. Then, the clerk had me convinced I would do just fine with a new iBook at less than half the price. Then, I reconsidered again and was ready to drop a large chuck of change on a new Powerbook.
Then I called my friend Joe.
He made me realize an important principle. What I really wanted from my next computer was more power, not more portability. I now do the lion's share of my computing in my apartment. From time to time, I like to use my computer in the living room, but my biggest frustration is not that I need to take it places, it's that the machine isn't powerful enough. Joe suggested something I hadn't thought of: "Get a desktop."
Suddenly, the path was clear. For less than half of the price of a top-of-the-line Powerbook, I could get a new iMac that would be significantly MORE powerful than the Powerbook. After that, I could pay to have my current iBook repaired or even buy a brand new iBook and STILL pay less than one Powerbook.
So that's just what I did. I'm typing this now on my new iMac, Winston. Why Winston? Well, in the past I've had an "Embassy" theme in my apartment and I was trying to revive that a little. Joe and I figured that one of the best diplomats of all time was Churchill and...ya know..."Winston" sounds cool.
The machine runs like an absolute dream. I bought 1GB of additional RAM and I never, ever run out. It makes my computer (and me) more efficient and effective. I do darn near everything I can on my computer and having something really speedy and powerful makes a big difference. Plus, it will roar through thousands of photos in iPhoto without breaking a sweat.
The screen is big and bright. The "Where's the computer?" design turns heads and fits in my tiny bedroom. OS X is the best operating system out there. Heck, even the stock keyboard is pretty nice. I'm very, very happy with my purchase.
I still haven't had my iBook repaired. I figure I'll let the backlight finally die before I worry too much about it. Besides, I no longer really use it while in my apartment. I'm sure that will change; I want to strip that machine down so it will run as fast as possible for email / web surfing. But for now, I don't miss it.
Besides, when it does finally die, it will only cost a few hundred bucks to get it good as new. Or a thousand for a brand new iBook. Remember, I won't need to the laptop for heavy lifting, so it doesn't need to be at all souped-up.
Anyway, I love my new iMac. If you get one, you should too. Plus, the process I used to choose it just reinforces the old Yogi Berra-ism, "When you see a fork in the road, take it."