Shortly after I bought a MacBook, I posted an (unpopular) article in which I vented about learning and using the new platform. I'd been a Windows guy for 20 years, and although I knew a transition to OS X would require effort, I didn't expect it to be quite so frustrating.
But I have since found a way forward with the machine. Rather than trying to jam it into my well-established workflow and have it replace my Windows laptop, I'm now trying to use it alongside my PC. It's also the only computer I travel with. And with a few tricks, I've found it to be a positive and productive experience.
Side by side on my computer keyboard (oh Lord...) At work, I like using the MacBook for instant messaging, Twitter, Skype, for researching and browsing, and for anything involving video. My old ThinkPad is slow, and offloading these apps from it during the day is a small help. I still use my PC for e-mail, since there's as yet no reasonable replacement for Outlook if you work at a company that runs Exchange servers, and for writing and taking notes, since my fingers know their way around a PC keyboard.
Although I'm using two computers, I use only one primary keyboard. Thanks to the old open-source app Synergy (and the Mac version called SyngergyKM), I can control the Mac from the keyboard that's connected to my ThinkPad. I have my MacBook on a stand to the right of my Thinkpad's external monitor (recommended: the Rain Design mStand), and when I drag the mouse off the right edge of the Windows screen, it appears on the MacBook. The keyboard then controls the Mac as well. Even better, copy and paste works between the machines (although, awkwardly, the keystrokes for copy and paste are different on a PC and Mac--I'm still learning to adapt to that). … Read more