I understand the thinning of the MacBook Pro from the 2012 model to the 2015 model (which is what I currently own, and in my opinion is the best Mac). But I definitely don't think it needed to get any thinner or lighter than that, especially if it's sacrificing ports or a good keyboard.
IMO the 2015 MacBook Pro is the best Mac out there, mainly because of its beautiful retina display, perfect weight, and most importantly, a good keyboard.
I know that going from a 2015 Macbook Pro to a 2017 one made a gigantic difference in how I used the device. The 2015 one I had to decide if I wanted to put in my backpack. It added a non significant weight to my bag and therefore my back. I wouldn't open it while standing or outside, simply because it wasn't comfortable to hold in one hand, or to type in a password.
The 2017 Macbook Pro, while flawed in many ways, is very different. I carry it everywhere without a thought. I can easily carry it open in one hand or closed like a book. I can pop it open for a second, type some stuff in while holding it, then put it back (TouchID is great for this too).
This may sound like Ive-esque purple prose, but truly, a lighter laptop lowers the barriers between the physical object and what I want to accomplish. I don't have to think about the physical weight of the laptop. I can just bring it. I don't have to think about putting the laptop down and using it. I can just palm it.
This modest difference in weight is mostly due to the reduced battery size that a more efficient chipset allows the newer laptop to have. The total weight of the 0.8mm thin ribbons of plastic and aluminium shaved off the plastic keys and edge of the aluminium case (the difference in key travel), is negligible compared to the weight of the laptop.
Apple could have made a laptop that was within 1% of the weight of your 2017 laptop, had a normal keyboard with good travel, and was just about 0.8mm thicker.
I do feel the newest MBPs gave up too much for the sake of thinness already. (The keyboard is unpleasant to use, on top of being unreliable.)
I wish Apple would be so bold as to Think Different here and prioritize usability.
Also thickness does matter! If you’re gripping a laptop in one hand, a thinner body is easier to hold. And it’s just plain beautiful. It feels futuristic. Which, yes, is nonsense. But it’s also how you make a product that people want.
Is it though? If you're trying to hold six closed laptops in the same hand, thinner might be better, but when holding one laptop in one hand, it's weight not thickness that matters.
IMO, a thinner body feels fragile. It feels like they've chosen aesthetics over durability to a detrimental extreme.
Thinner also means less room for cooling and a smaller battery. If I see a super-thin laptop, I'm going to assume it has low performance to compensate for inadequate cooling.
> But it’s also how you make a product that people want.
Is anybody asking for a thinner laptop? Or is Apple just creating a benchmark and advertising it?
This whole thing just re-affirms my belief that Apple isn't a tech company, they're a fashion company. They have absurdly inflated pricing and over-emphasis on aesthetics over performance.
I don't disagree! If you don't understand fashion, you won't understand Apple. I'm always mystified at how people are seemingly disgusted at Apple's business model of selling products that look good. Well, yeah, people will want to buy products that look and feel good.
That's why people buy expensive clothes. They don't buy clothes for the features. They buy it because it looks and feels nice. You can certainly wear clothes that have more "features" like cargo shorts or pants that unzip to shorts. But don't be surprised when people eschew them for clothes that are objectively less practical but more beautiful.
It actually stuns me how other companies don't understand aesthetics at all. Windows laptops are shockingly ugly. Thinkpads are truly the cargo shorts of laptops. Sometimes they're slightly slimmer, slightly better cut cargo shorts, but they're still cargo shorts. Microsoft's laptops are probably the closest to beautiful, but they're still not that good. And when they're good, they're suspiciously close to Apple's products.
That being said, Apple's laptops aren't as bad for the money as you'd imagine. Try finding a cheaper laptop with a unibody construction that feels as durable, as well built as a Mac. Try finding a cheaper laptop where I can speak to an actual, physical person about getting it fixed. Try finding a cheaper laptop with as fast of an SSD^. Try finding a cheaper laptop with as good of a touchpad. It's not as easy as you'd imagine.
It seems like Apple is spending the gains from better circuitry in the wrong way.
with that said, these discussions on mbp keyboards and thinness always miss the reason apple strives for thinness in the first place: to drive the market in a direction where apple is always perceived to have the lead/the best products. thinner products are harder to design, harder to manufacture, and really lean on the supply chain and operational focus/excellence of apple. that gives them their enviable market position, and most of the industry’s profits, so that’s why they do it. it’s really that simple.
Not having a tactile escape key is a poor decision, as is the choice to ditch the inverted-T cursor keys, just to make the keyboard look more symmetrical. Both seem like steps backwards in usability — both being harder to navigate by feel.
So having to remap ESC to Capslock and often hitting the wrong arrow key is a much too big drawback to a bigger touchpad
Imo, the touchpad on Macbook has always been its greatest strength and they managed to ruin it.
While thinner, the maxed out 2018 15" model is 4.02 lbs, whereas the maxed out 2013 15" is 4.46 pounds. To me, there isn't much difference in 'heft' between the two.
For portable use I'd rather throw a 12" MacBook in my bag.
(Had to edit repeated keypresses when typing this post due to the butterfly keyboard I wrote it on)
I also hate that Lenovo are trying to join the "everything should be thin" crowd, especially seeing what it has done to Apple's keyboards. If you want thin, the MacBook Air or the Lenovo X1 models are there for you. If you want a more complete experience for working on for longer periods of time, the Thinkpad TXXX and MacBook (Pro) used to be what you go for, but those are condensing to look like the ultra thin models that it's becoming increasingly hard to justify the separation.
Please Apple/Lenovo, leave the thicker models thick and focus efforts on the thinner models if you want to make something thinner. I just want a good keyboard on my laptop...
It's not they're all in the replacement program and the mechanism condom they added to the 2018 still has holes dust can get through unfortunately.
Thinner != lighter.
It's totally legit to have a not-so-thin laptop that gets lighter every year, but preserves the most important ports.
You can ask any athlete, or look up calorie expenditure charts for people carrying different weights if that more your thing.
I was a serious athlete for about fifteen years and still am casually. Of course it makes a difference; the question is how much. The answer is not much, especially when we're talking about relatively short distances (I don't think anyone commenting here is talking about carrying their laptop for a 30 mile hike), and I'd much prefer better battery life and the old keyboard.
Im not saying a pound of weight is much, I'm saying that our "rugged farming ancestors" certainly wouldn't scoff at carrying a pound less weight.
We're not farmers. If you are living under conditions like a farmer then yes, by all means, shed every pound you can. I don't imagine that the person who started this thread has to deal with those sort of conditions.
It seems I wasn't the only farmer to state this, as @lolsal said:
> When I'm walking my fields repairing my fences I absolutely wish my fencing tools were lighter, even if I'm using my truck or other vehicle to carry my tools. I don't think they'd belly laugh at someone who preferred more efficient tools.
Yep. 2015 Macbook Pro is the last best mac. Probably this is why refurbished 2015 MBP commands premium over other models.
The fake click feels so real that people don't even realise it's a fake click if you don't tell them.
The mechanical trackpads only allowed clicking in the bottom half (since it was a hinge), and in my experience it was unreliable. After a few years, clicks started registering twice, or not at all, etc.
The fake click track pad allows clicking everywhere, it lets you configure activation force, and for me it has been working flawlessly every day for years.
Then I finally remembered it was haptic feedback and a reboot fixed it. I had completely forgotten it was not a real click.
Why so much "new" is actually worse these days..
even with plausible disney merch. strategy, to me it's a clear and sad sign of some issue in entertainment production
Not many things quit at their peak. You tend to notice less things which were past their peak when you were growing up and remember things which peaked while you were around.
It might have something to do with why people get more conservative as they get older. There's a bias towards thinking things were better before than they are now when people just don't remember the crap from when they were younger and things actually are pretty much the same (or really are generally getting better by most metrics)
You have a tendency to notice things getting worse that you personally experience. When you're younger you have had less time to experience something you care about declining than when you're older which leads to a cognitive bias where it seems that things were generally better when you were young.
However old you are, there were plenty of things in decline when you were young that you just didn't notice or care about because you never experienced them at their best and are much less likely to experience them. So many people have experienced Star Wars because it's super culturally relevant, but slide down that scale and there will be tons of things your parents saw the decline of that you might not even know existed.
New stuff in general is not worse. New versions of old things quite often are! So upgrade your taste and try new things instead of newer versions of the old things you know you like, because with these you're very likely to be disappointed.
In this context maybe the answer would be to try something else than a macbook. Tbh, and iPad pro capable of running Xcode and docker would rock for me.
I can't wait until the day where I can genuinely do some development on an iPad.
c'mon we won't tell
Apple takes the aesthetic far too seriously now, they're no longer concerned with approachability and usability. They're not really in the running for "what computer to give grandma" anymore.
My wish would be to see a return to a nice keyboard that feels good to type on, an option to omit the Touch Bar from high end MacBook Pro models, and the option for an Nvidia GPU. Otherwise, my next MacBook Pro will be a decked out 2015 model.
> This angle that he’s still going to work with Apple as an independent design firm seems like pure spin. You’re either at Apple or you’re not. Ive is out.
> Apple’s hardware and industrial design teams work so far out that, even if I’m right and Ive is now effectively out of Apple, we’ll still be seeing Ive-designed hardware 5 years from now. It is going to take a long time to evaluate his absence.
I didn't watch the full September iPhone keynote, but from what I saw there was a noticeable lack of Jony Ive voiceover in the featured iPhone product videos. I may have just missed it, though?
In the Jobs era, Apple would sometimes make drastic hardware changes very close to the release of new hardware. It's possible that the criticism of the keyboards from so many corners (WSJ, famously ) may have shifted their plans.
They used to use PowerVR GPUs in the iPhone line, but I think (?) they're designed in-house now. They have their own Metal graphics API already. And they're on a 7nm process from TSMC.
As far as this particular tech goes, the frailty of the butterfly keyboard is only half the problem for me. The other half is the lack of travel itself! I'm going to hang on to this 2015 model until it completely dies and then go find something else if what's on offer from Apple feels like typing on a sheet of tin foil on a kitchen counter.
It could be a little lighter, but I carry it around in a backpack so I don't mind, and it's still not too heavy to balance on my belly if needed to, so I don't mind either.
Thinner? I also had an Air, and while it was a pleasure to carry around, I never liked the feel. It was too thin for my taste already.
People complain about how it falls out "all the time", but to me that suggests that it's doing its job.
Meanwhile one of my two usb-c ports on my 2017 MBP is already damaged from normal wear (jiggling a cable will challenge the connection), probably from the times the port took the whole load of a pulled cable. Magsafe did the right thing of sparing the port.
Though as Apple macbooks become lighter and lighter, we increasingly deal with the ridiculous failcase where a pulled cable can launch the entire laptop off the table. I feel like magsafe is even more necessary now than ever before.
I wasn't aware this was even a complaint. The magsafe always just seemed like it did exactly what it needed to; I think I can recall just a few occasions when I didn't realize I had set one of my MacBooks down at an angle on the bed or something and separated part of the power cord just enough to stop charging it.
I upgraded to a 2018 MacBook Air just earlier this year, and the lack of a native magsafe option is my only regret on the purchase. The plus side is that the battery really is pretty amazing, so most of the time I am just running without it plugged in at all, and at night the laptop peacefully charges.
Still miss the comfort of the magsafe though.
I used an MagSafe 1 L-form one for a couple of years as well, and now the MagSafe 2 T-form one.
With the MagSafe 2 the cable sheath started to become kind of porous and would fray after a year at the connector, which I had to fix (used some excess sugru my sister had lying around). This worked, but made the connector end a little heavier meaning even more chance it will slip if the laptop is moved ever so slightly.
Another half year later or so the cable showed the same symptoms in the middle of it, where now a large area of the cable sheath would become rigid, porous and would eventually rip open. That part of the cable was usually in the air, did not touch anything and of course was not in front of a heat source or anything like that. Imagine my confusion. I patched it up again with some electric tape.
I never had these problems with the MagSafe 1 cable. When I googled a bit, this seems to be a common issue for Apple cables, and a lot, lot, lot more common for the MagSafe 2 (anecdotally from what I saw in the google results). That and a lot of people would have the entire cable fray and stop working (usually at the power block end), at which point you'd either have to open up the thing and solder it together or more likely buy a replacement for 80 bucks, but that didn't happen to me (yet) thankfully.
I've used a lot of laptops, and while the magnetic connector is certainly an improvement (so of course, Apple replaced it with USB-C), I never had a cable slowly shed the cable sheath before. That's what I meant by bad design.
As far as I can tell, things didn't improve. Instead Apple decided to not even ship a cord with new models, so you either have to buy one yourself (another 20 bucks) or plug the power block directly into the wall socket. I'm cynic enough by now to believe they didn't stop shipping one because they are cheap, but to make the packaging box "thinner".
 e.g. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13307130
They used to not have that grippy coating and I think those smooth cables worked great (until I ran over mine with a desk chair), even the original ipod cables were pretty solid in my experience, but every L shaped magsafe 1 is a time bomb just like any other apple cable these days.
But is it just programmers that don't care about the thinness of their keyboards and want something functional and high performing?
It perplexes me why non-programmer consumers wouldn't want the same. Who is Apple aiming at?
Is it really any wonder that as Apple products become more and more of a status symbol we see quality slip, not entirely, but just enough that they can keep their status but increase their margins? I would argue it's what we should expect given their situation (even if it sucks).
People use these things around town in coffee shops, take them around campus, travel the world with them, etc.
Every pound in my backpack matters to me. Weight matters to me. Thinness matters to me. It's the difference between me deciding to bring my laptop and completely leaving it behind.
Same philosophy with my camera gear. I never got into the DSLR game because they were simply too heavy and bulky. I much prefer mirrorless cameras and I'm fine with the tradeoffs that come with them because I actually take my mirrorless camera around with me.
You don't have to agree with me, but I'm a huge fan of thin and light devices.
But I don't like having to carry extra connectors/adaptors (esp SD Card and ethernet port).
In my backpack, the screen presses on the keyboard and is leaving a mark on the screen.
A simple 1 meter fall on soft carpeted floor can dent its corners and cause the lid to not close fully flush.
These damages are not worth the few millimeter thinness or few grams of weight needed for added structural strength.
These are things I wish they addressed while pursuing thinner/lighter MacBook Pros.
The quality argument isn't worth discussing much, as I assume you agree with the premise that quality should not drop, even if you may or may not agree it has or has not dropped (but Apple doesn't score nearly as well as it used to with review sites, and there are various things I could link to regarding quality problems, or you could just watch from stuff from Louis Rossmann).
The keyboard argument I think requires a bit more explanation, in that I think the keyboard is both of more relative importance than weight, and should be of importance for more time than the weight is as well (you should be using the keyboard longer than you are walking around with the laptop, if it's actually important for your job). As such, I see a change in the keyboard as a functionality loss for a marketing gain, since the actual weight reduction could be very minimal since it was mainly for thickness reduction (it appears the 2015 Macbook Pro might be lighter than the 2019 Macbook Pro?). To me that speaks to Apple trying to retain or cement the status symbol feature of their brand, where artistic design is, to some degree, outweighing functional design.
I don't mean to excuse the keyboard problems - those should be addressed. But I just wanted to share my opinion because there are A LOT of others who feel the same way I do - they just have no incentive to participate in these discussions. I usually just ignore them - but in this case I was a bit bored.
I've had professors delay class because they forgot the damn dongle, or the dongle mysteriously doesn't work in this particular lecture hall but "worked fine in my office!!" Occasionally you'd see someone in the wild with a tiny keychain usb drive or logitech wireless nub and a hulking 4 port dongle taking up nearly half the table space as the laptop.
I get keeping a wedged laptop like the air sparse, but Macbook pros have like 6 inches on either side where they could throw in a usb type a or hdmi cable (or the card reader, if you like photography!) if they reduced the taper by 1mm and kept the laptop at the same thickness. To not do that is aggressively stubborn, especially when usb-c isn't even the standard plug for their phones.
They've become a fashion company. They have an over-emphasis on aesthetics over performance and durability, matched with incredibly inflated prices. For the price of any Apple computer, I can get a PC with equivalent or better specs for at least 30% less cash.
Don’t get me wrong, when I sold my mbp 2018 edition earlier this year it was replaced by a surface pro 6. But if you’re not fed up with the Apple eco-system as I am, then there can be a lot of value in resales and you won’t get those with any other brand. My surface pro by contrast lost 80% of its value to moment I bought it.
The article is based on a patent filed half a year before the current butterfly keyboards were introduced. There's absolutely no reason to assume that this is exactly what the next iteration of the mac laptop keyboards will be like.
Maybe there should be a 15" MBP lite that is just that?
Also as you said, user replaceable battery, ssd and ram.
Which is why Apple should differentiate between the "air" and the "pro" line more. There would be a place for a 15" air, which is a slightly thinned version of the current 15" pro, and a true pro machine which sacrifices a bit of portability for features and performance.
My current dream machine would be roughly like the late 2015 MB Pro (that happens to be the machine I am typing this on), with at least a 16" screen (the bezels are plenty large on mine) and 1-2mm more thickness, allowing for good thermals and more serviceable parts. For a pro machine a battery, keyboard or ssd exchange needs to be doable by a skilled technician on-site.
To me it seems an oddly missing niche. A lot of people spend a lot of time on planes, don’t need much of a laptop, and often don’t much care for tablets as laptop replacements. Nothing really on the market for them.
To be fair though, I'm not that bothered about macos and ran linux on it for several years. I bought it because of the screen, typing and the trackpad, and since the MBP is well into compromise land, I might buy a matebook x pro.
Yep, I have a Late 2013 Retina still going strong, the only thing is I've had to replace the battery a couple of times which is a pain in the ass but it was used as my daily work machine for half of its life and still going strong.
My old work laptop was one of the more recent MacBook models and I never got used to the keyboard or having to use dongles for everything.
At work I have a 2015 15” and imagine that’s the route I’ll go to replace my personal machine soon enough...
But I'm with you on it needing a functional, decent keyboard. That shouldn't be sacrificed.
There is a wireless standard for displays, but Macs and PCs seem to be incompatible.
But I would ask - what sort of projector? Because some of the meeting rooms here still have VGA connectors, we have others that use HDMI, screens in our collab area that have mini-displayport, I'm pretty sure there's a DVI-only projector hanging around somewhere too... Do you want all these ports on your laptop?
I'm loving the (seeming) convergence of display-port-over-thunderbolt using USB-C connectors. Though unfortunately it also seems that not every device and every display are happy talking over that so maybe it's no panacea either.
I think this needs further explanation, because I do think people want less port and thinner. Just not at the inconvenience of it.
Example, had there been a Wireless Standard that allow direct transfer of 5Gbps+ Real World speed, energy efficient, widely available etc. I dont need more ports. I need one for power / Display and that is it.
I would love the MacBook to be thinner, but not at the expense of having only 7W cTDP CPU and zero-travel keyboard. ( And I know we are approaching the limit of physics )
And I wanted to point out, when the current MacBook generation were designed, Apple were looking at Roadmaps of upcoming tech. That is 802.11ad 60Ghz and its successor 802.11ay with 80Gbps direct transfer, 802.11ax with 3.2Gbps and more. Intel 10nm that is suppose to be Super Power efficient, and its 7nm that superseded it.
All of these were suppose to come in 2016 / 2017. And if there were delays, may be 2018. But none of them did, we are closing in to 2020 and we are just starting to see WiFi 6 coming out. And judging from Intel's extremely conservative statement 10nm won't be in high volume any time soon either.
So Apple designed their product with future iteration in mind for the next 4 years and none of that went according to plan.
On one hand I blame them for not reacting, like their Keyboard they simply refuse to admit there is a problem until a Journalist herself had the same problem described and decide to write a piece on it that went viral. On the other hand I believe everyone were blindsided, the WiFi 6 tech has been on trade show since 2017, and it keep getting delayed, Intel kept thinking their 10nm will come. And most Keyboard problems dont actually went to Apple Store for repair because we cant afford to have 3 days without our laptop. And Apple thought the stats were fine.
What about integrated USB and display ports that don't require external adapters? Isn't that the dream? o_o
- Apple: you get USB-C and a bucketful of dongles.
- Others: we'll make machines with all those ports.
2024 [the dream is realized]: peripherals use USB-C exclusively.
- Apple: We were right about USB-C. To congratulate ourselves, let's introduce USB-NeXT (incompatible with USB-C).
- Others: Your old machines still work. New machines just have USB-C.
2024 [darkest timeline]: peripherals never converge on USB-C.
- Apple: USB-C isn't converging. Let's introduce USB-NeXT (incompatible with USB-C).
- Others: Your old machines still work. We'll continue making machines with all those ports.
On the flip side, the maniacal focus on thinness led to the disastrous butterfly keyboard and associated replacement program.
It was the first Apple product I bought but I can't see myself buying another MBP. They've signalled and demonstrated over and over I'm not in their target market.
Just seems like a weird complaint about otherwise excellent laptops.
I have an X1 Yoga and it's pretty good. A little awkward as a tablet, but I rarely use it that way, just as I rarely use the trackpoint.
This is especially true now that they're trying to position the iPad as a serious "work" machine. If it hasn't crossed this threshold already it will soon where the only reason one would need a small MacBook is because the interoperability of ports and a solid keyboard/mouse navigation process is important to your workflow.
Let the iPad handle use cases where those aren't important and let the Mac be the heavy-duty machine.
Jobs had a good quote back in the day about how not everyone wants or needs a computer equivalent of a pick-up truck and most computer vendors tend to assume they do. Apple is leaning towards the opposite problem where they're assuming everyone wants the equivalent of a sports car, which is just as bad.
Let the iPad be the Miata and let the Mac Pro be an F-250. But some of us in the middle just want a nice Camry (or the BMW/Audi/Mercedes equivalent) and they're doing a poor job of understanding what that means.
That said, theres nothing wrong with trying to make progress. Sometimes there are hiccups (the 2016+ keyboards).
I certainly appreciate the thinner form factor of my 2018 model (I don't mind the keyboard). I do see room in improvement for making them thinner, as my absolutely favorite portable is the Pixelbook (sans giant bezel), which is quite a bit thinner (0.4" vs 0.61") and still has the 2015 style keyboard.
It also had a variety of ports. The only downside was the machined aluminum case of subsequent models was rock solid.
Also, cramming a number pad into the keyboard seems like a poor trade off.
I realise this is a bit of an edge case, but at this point i'll take every gram I can get.
It's pretty telling that apple is only concerned about milking every dollar out of you when phones start at 64gb, laptops are sold with 8gb of RAM, and getting 1tb of storage on your laptop requires another thousand dollars. Apple either rips you off on the upgrade or forces you into their cloud service, where you are at the mercy of our good friendly and ever reliable ISP cartels to access your files.
"The MacBook doesn't need to be thinner": The MacBook doesn't need to exist either, but I think as technology improves and things are lighter and more power efficient, the smaller the footprint will be (size and weight).
I can see the argument against a decision to shrink it down 0.001m - which is only a 6% reduction in thickness (0.001/0.0149), but if it was a 0.49m reduction, bringing it down to a thickness of 1cm, would you still hold that same opinion?
Taking this to levels of science fiction - I would love a laptop so thin you can fold it like a piece of paper and place it in your pocket. I don't need any ports if all my data is always available in some "cloud" that my laptop has free and instant access to. So thin and cheap, if I dirty it I can crumble it, toss it in recycle, and just rip open a brand new one.
These are all things I care about that are being sacrificed by Apple to improve one aspect I don't care about (thickness).
I'm definitely not the only one who's thinking that, as evidenced by the comment threads here.
On your opinion on RAM - I disagree. I feel like the way memory modules are psychically, they would probably be detrimental enough (thickness, keyboard, battery, maybe eventual water resistance) that it would out weight the benefits. Besides, you can get enough RAM when you buy the notebook that the amount you get will be good enough far past the date of the CPU being good enough.
On SSD though, I agree. I think with M.2, now with Gen 4 M.2 (and SFF NVMe?), Apple could and should of went to the lengths of allowing that. Even at this thinness, there is not great excuse why not. Besides, its STORAGE. It goes bad, people want to back it up, extract it, recover it, etc. Apple should not have to replace the whole logic board for that.
I got lucky and ended up with a 32G work laptop. I've got enough headroom to run a couple docker containers at the same time. My co-workers stuck with the 16G laptops are really in a tough place. As things stand, I end up stuffing a pile of dongles into my bag as I transition from work to home and back again.
It is unfortunate the person who keeps demanding 'thinner' over 'professional' keeps getting listened to. Wish I could find a 16:10 laptop that had expandability.
As someone who took a job using Windows after 4.5 years away from it, I completely disagree.
I hate windows with a passion, and it’s part of the reason I’m looking for a new job.
I’m not saying it’s not good enough for some, a lot of things in it still suck.
And no, in my opinion WSL is not real solution if the OS still makes life harder and more weird. Just a new twist to the cygwin/mingw/virtualisation scheme when running the real thing would be a lot better option.
And no, Macs and Linux are not perfect either, but they both are more friendly and humane options for developers.
I dual boot constantly and sometimes I forget what OS I am running. Until I see one clock instead of the other.
Of course there are some specific tasks that are more suited to one OS over the other (a reason for restarting), but things like using the browser, the text editor, VPNs, Kodi, epub readers, Anki, etc, they basically work the same.
So, for some games-> Windows, for CLI -> Linux, for anything else, any of them.
Since VMs and containers because standard for development, I honestly have no idea what problems your colleagues are having. I haven't had a "Windows problem" other than the clunky UI since Win7, and the UI is 100% customizable.
- a windows 2016 server for which we needed to dig deep in powershell so it wouldn't reset the clock every 6 hours
- a user whose local account services is totalled and he can't access his desktop any more
Personally I would like the start menu search to only look for applications but I gave up on that.
I suppose using windows only for office would help, of course.
I attribute the other one to a brutal shutdown of the PC that somehow corrupted a running update, some random clicking from the user in a misguided attempt to fix things behind the back of IT et voilà.
Why doesn’t WSL work? It’s Linux. It’s closer to what you’re deploying on for production than a Mac
WSL2 is a lightweight VM and is Linux. It has some new quirks.
Directory management: 'Directory Opus'
Fast search: 'Everything' and 'Agent Ransack'
Powershell is actually pretty neat once you get past the odd syntax.
But yeah, you can't turn it into a native unix env.
I mostly use Linux Mint Cinnamon and the window and workspace management just feels more consistent and snappy.
Also Windows apps have a very annoying habit of showing windows for background tasks (file sync? software updates?) which I don't want to care about -- all they really accomplish is that sometimes the service gets stopped altogether just to forget about it.
It's like Total Commander: efficient and good in a way, but not in a way of modern streamlined UX that e.g. Apple software was once known for.
Has no one used WSL? It’s pretty close compared to the past. No need for powershell. You have bash now
honestly, powershell is a superb weapon. Yes the syntax is .net-ish and not my preference but really the functionality is high.
The onus is on you to prove that this is true and endemic to the platform and not your unfamiliarity with the workflows on Windows.
I had a similar transition. I used DOS through XP/2000 heavily growing up. I worked jobs that used Linux and had a Mac at home until I had a recent job as Win10 was being adopted. I tried to give it my best effort. I got a book on Powershell and read it and researched. I was aghast that the same frustrations I had with XP and earlier hadn't been touched. I wish I had kept a log as I re-discovered them.
* Nobody used PowerShell. I tried to push it, but then I realized I needed a BAT file wrapper to run PS1 files, anyway. I was hoping PowerShell would be a next-gen BASH, but having verbose flags is great in scripts, but horrible interactively. The system I was on was air-gapped and the documentation required an extra download on each system.
* Man, Windows still updates a lot. Often requiring reboots. MacOS asks to reboot like twice a year (and doesn't force it). With Linux it's very, very rarely necessary to reboot.
* I found window management awkward. I was coming from Linux where META+LMB moved Windows, META+MMB resized them. I tried the hot-corners shortcuts and other built-in things, I tried installing a few things.
* When the UI is busy I still can't resize or minimize it?
* Control Panel and other configurations were a huge mishmash of tacked on menus with a mix of old UIs and icons.
* I really missed ssh-ing in to query and poke at stuff. RDP felt so heavy for small stuff that should be quick or automated.
After a few months I toyed with WSL, but spent most of my time sshed into a Linux box using vim or bash when managing files or source code. Most of the small services I set up running in Linux. After a year and a half I left for a variety of reasons.
Nothing stops you from installing an SSH server also.
Also, you can change the update policy (although that might be due to your IT).
> Nothing stops you from installing an SSH server also.
I didn't want to get too much into this in my previous comment because it has more to do with how the place was managed, then Windows itself. But it does speak to Windows out of the box. This was an air-gapped setup and they were fairly open to me making changes, but I was very careful about jumping in suggesting big changes since I had 0 practical experience managing Windows. They mostly started with Windows as it was installed when it was delivered. Windows 10 was fairly new and they were comfortable with 7. Things were managed with PDQ. Most things were done in an "artisanal" fashion (individually done in a simple or straightforward way). I was used to installing a bunch of software on a network drive and running it directly off NFS. I've been told at multiple places that's unfeasible with SMB because of performance. (I'm definitely not speaking to NFS or SMB as a whole here--just with this specific use-case)
This also meant our rack of headless machines, when the power went out, had to be brought up individually since the disk checker was waiting for input before booting. I had on my todo list to change this, but it's difficult to test and roll out and doesn't come up often.
Back to that question; it would have meant finding a third-party ssh and rolling it out just to appease me. I likely would have done it if I stuck around, though. Maybe in tandem with a full update to Win10.
On that topic, though. Currently, I support Windows users who work from home. It's a bit odd you need admin privileges to create a symlink (I admit, that need mostly comes from trying to get feature parity with Linux/macOS), but detecting and running Admin rights is incredibly awkward . We also need these non-technical people do to some port forwarding or to ssh into our Linux servers. PuTTy's configuration interface is horrid to describe to random people. Since you can't import/export configs we've looked at creating a Registry file with the right configuration, but it's not a trivial thing. For a few people we've had them install WSL, but it's a bit overkill to install however many Gigs along with Linux just to get an ssh client (and it's not an option for non Windows 10 users).
With WSL, it’s usable for me now since Linux is baked in. Are the apps as good on a Mac? Usually not, but a lot apps on Mac aren’t even native anymore.
On WSL (one? whatever) there is no raw socket access, zero. Cannot run something as simple as tcpdump. Plus the copy and pasting (CTRL-SHIFT-c/v) is incredibly annoying and inconsistent. Also the redraw in the terminal is really screwed up, half the time I try to go back to WSL and my terminal prompt is drawn in 3 different places on the screen.
I prefer my Mac with iTerm etc etc but I still work with WSL just as well today
1. I absolutely hate the latest UI changes. Not only are things hard to find and not organized very well, especially in the system settings, but the UI feels jerky and rough compared to MacOS when moving windows around or when the “Are you sure you want to do this?” dialog pops up.
2. I cannot stand working with Windows Explorer, drive letters, and the overly complex tree view.
3. Things that are easy on MacOS (i.e. rotating and cropping pictures, editing and signing PDFs, etc.) are either hard or not supported on Windows.
4. Device driver issues are more frequent on Windows and suck to fix.
5. Windows has a LOT of shitty software for it and it seems that everyone who asks me for help is running that shitty software.
6. I don’t like the cluttered UIs that most Windows applications have; like the Ribbon thing that Office introduced.
7. I don’t like .NET and Visual Studio much, and I don’t like programming for Windows. I prefer Swift and Xcode. Having said that, I do like F# quite a bit.
One area where I think Windows really shines is gaming.
These days I'm on macOS not linux but my desire for that kind of control and speed remains; fortunately tools like BetterTouchTool enable this really nicely, and I get the best of both worlds: nice mouse-driven control when I want it, and a quick/easy way to throw a window where I want it the rest of the time (i.e. most of the time).
(I'd also say, addressing the parenthesised part of your first question, that for me, this isn't just about dev - this is a general preference; for some tools, e.g. the GIMP, tiling's a bad fit and the mouse is where it's at, but in general, if I can keyboard it, I will.)
So I've got a whole bunch of hotkeys doing things like "maximise window", "put window in top-right quadrant", "put window on display 3, taking up 1/3 of the width of the screen at the right and at full height". That kinda thing. This allows me to quickly/easily set things up as I want (not _automatically_ but that's fine for me in practice since the world and my needs are always in flux.) If you dig into it you can do some fairly powerful things... E.g. you can set up named triggers (i.e. actions not bound to hotkeys) which you can then call from AppleScript triggered by hotkeys (or, if you want, triggered externally by, e.g. Alfred, though I don't do that); the AppleScripts can maintain state between calls, so I have some hotkeys that move windows in cycles, e.g. "maximise the window's height and push it all the way to the left, and on each call cycle its width between 1/6, 1/3, 1/4, 1/2, 2/3" - stuff like that.
It's true you don't get "real" tiling with this - but as I say, for me, it satisfies the "why" of tiling WMs, without doing the "how". Hope that makes sense.
Weird, I always ask people the opposite. Why would you spend time manually positioning windows when the window manager can do it for you?
What is "tedious" about tiling window managers?
In a tiling WM full screen is the default. I never have to manually full screen something, it’s automatically taking up the whole screen. I usually have it in tabbed mode, so all new programs are just full screen in tabs. (And split view is just a hot key or two away)
Really though my favorite thing is the easy multiple desktops. Win+4 is always my chat program. Win+2 is always my ide, win+1 is always my web browser. I never have to mash alt+tab a varying number of times. and more importantly if the second desktop is actually two programs in split screen, it’s still easy to switch to and from. Otherwise I frequently find myself looking at one thing in full screen, then having to alt+tab multiple times to bring two half-screen programs back to the front.
I’ve tried to install various windows tools to either provide hot keys to virtual desktops, or otherwise replicate my tiling WM setup but nothing seems to be quite as convenient to me. I feel like I waste so much time alt+tabbing and getting things where I want them whenever I’m in a normal WM. In i3 it’s all either already the way I like or it’s 1-2 hotkeys to fix it.
It automatically makes the window you're using take up 100% of the screen. You can also switch between tiling and a maximized view in pretty much every tiling wm. Also, there are usually multiple desktops (or even better, "tags" like in dwm) which allow you to easily switch between applications in any of the different tiling modes.
As long as it runs well on anything newer than 5 years old, I'm happy. This captures enough users without requiring me to go to great pains to get the remaining, much harder hardware/software setups.
People may read that and hate it, but the reality is I have deadlines to meet, demanding bosses, and a never ending queue of features and bugfixes. I suspect a lot of folks are in the same boat.
I mean, I know it's useful, but at my previous job I was able to use my vintage 2GB Macbook Air after installing things with brew + rbenv, while everyone else needed 16GB. All it took was a couple hours to setup the local environment.
Never had a problem because the environment was different and my app startup times were much smaller.
MAKE THEM THICKER, I want more battery life and better performance! I am a fat out of shape need and I can carry 40lbs on my back, no sweat. MAKE THEM THICKER.
Yes. Anyone who carries them around demands thinner, where possible. I could have bought a MBP and am typing this on a MBA. The latter has various advantages but the latter is fast enough and also lighter. PG uses (used?) 11" MBAs. https://twitter.com/paulg/status/740739637572997120?lang=en
I use my machine to do work. Better performance makes we work better and faster. It's my bread and butter. Less weight... is a slight convenience while commuting, I guess?
If weight is an issue then swapping aluminium for plastic would be more effective. But then it would be function over form.
If you put it in a single strap bag like a satchel then it can dig into your shoulder after a few hours. If you use a briefcase then you have to mount it somewhere or continually have one hand occupied.
1) desktop (Ubuntu), main daily use at home
2) laptop (t410s/Ubuntu). For work in apps rooms. Really falling to bits now, but still using it due to things like Ethernet port. The keyboard is now worse than the air so looking how beast to replace it
3) MacBook Air, for portable use
Right tool for the right job. If I want a portable I’ll go for a small air. If I want a useful machine I’ll go for something larger and heavier, but with the ports I need
Well, they could be tightened back when I carried a few around.
I am (perhaps incorrectly) assuming that your hinges are loose and not actually breaking apart.
The cpu fan doesn’t work either.
Why? Because I want the least possible weight, and a screen size I can use. The only way to hold screen size constant and drop weight is to get thinner.
I just got a 13" MBP, which is about the same weight and size as my 2012 Air, but gives me better battery life, better performance, and a way better screen. It's great. I even like the new keyboard better.
Like yeah, going from 2.8 to 2lbs is great and all but it's not as notable as the jump 10 years ago from the 5lbs bricks to the original MacBook Air. The computer still takes up about the same space in my bag and I wouldn't really notice ~1 lbs difference, especially if I still have to carry around a 1lbs power adapter because the thin battery lasts less than 8-10 hours of moderate use.
In the meantime, the design compromises to get to 2lbs are becoming increasingly aggravating: thinner keyboards that jam, screens bonded to glass so that repair is impossible, RAM and SSD soldered onto the board, batteries broken up into pieces so that replacement is annoying or impossible, passively cooled Intel chips that throttle, weak integrated GPUs. And probably a bunch of other stuff.
I see the appeal of light and minimal, but I also see the idea of heavy and feature packed.
Plus pursuing thinness as end in and of itself (edit: to the point that reliability is impacted) is preposterous. Is a few millimeters thinner really going to change the way you feel about your laptop? Probably it would not impact any functional aspect of your relationship with the laptop.
After all, thicker doesn’t necessarily mean heavier. I’m fact thicker things are more resistant to bending, so perhaps it could mean lighter. If you want to understand the mechanics, check this out https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Section_modulus
Or get rid of bezels. Or have a better aspect ratio.
> gives me better battery life, better performance, and a way better screen
That is be expected after so many years. Also, before apple started its "retina" branding it just had worse screens than comparable competition, e.g. sony vaio or hp and lenovo with nice high-res IPS screens while the air had a rather low res TN screen.
I won't say I'm for thinner laptops, per se, because I'd rather that every laptop came with the maximum permissible 99 WHr battery, but I want everything as light as possible hell yes.
Let the skinny-jeans kids get their skinny phones and have to charge everywhere, but I'm fine with a brick in my pocket if the battery can go for a couple days.
It's fantastic and I love it. I just wish it were bigger - 17 inch laptops were a nice, but sadly almost extinct, form-factor. Particularly the 2010ish 17" MacBook Pros were rock-solid, indestructible machines.
I will be working and playing on this thing, not waving it around in the air with just two fingers.
I want something I don't even notice in my shoulder bag when I commute. Battery life is good enough, performance is good enough (and can boost a bit when the machine is plugged in).
You sound like you might be in the market for a workstation-replacement thinkpad.
Particularly the Air is weird, it's not a lot slimmer or lighter than the 13" pro now, but it is a lot less powerful. It's a weird market segmentation (to my eyes).
I have my desktop for serious typing and my laptop for a mobile workstation. Sometimes I need to work while visiting family or when going to conferences, and I need a decent keyboard, battery, and performance to do so.
If I want thin, I'll get something like a MBA, a tablet, or my little Lenovo Yoga (11"). But that's not enough for me to get work done on the go, it's mostly just barely good enough to take notes and watch videos. I need something capable of compiling decently large codebases and 3D rendering, and no MBA is good enough for that.
Also, you give people reason to have more than 1 Apple laptop, one with ports and great keyboard when ultra portability is not necessary, and the other for portability above all.
Current MBPs have problems with thermal throttling already, but you want them to be even thinner _and_ more powerful??
yes. a lot of people, myself included.