Monthly Archives: July 2012

Buying a PC Laptop?

I’m a Mac

I’ve been a Mac for a few years now. When I was working at Pelco a few years back I had a 17″ MacBook Pro and I loved it. We bought our daughters Macs when they graduated from high school and I bought my lovely wife a Mac. We have more than a few iPod’s laying around the house and four iPhones between us. We’re definitely an Apple loving family.

Three years ago, with the help of my brother, we released our first iOS application, RxCalc. It’s been all Apple, all the time since then. I finally got my first Mac for Christmas, December 2011. Up to that point I developed iOS software on my wife’s Mac.

I was finally able to venture out on my own in May, 2012. My primary goal was to find enough freelance work to allow me to work on my own software from time to time. I’d love to ship some iOS and Mac software this year, or early next year. So far things have been great. I’m just rolling off a great project and trying to wrap up another, both iOS. But, being a freelancer is difficult. Work is work, right?

To Windows, or not to Windows?

Most of my 20 plus hears has been spent writing software for Windows, so it’s something I know, and I’m comfortable writing software on that platform. I’ve been in discussions with a company to work on some Windows based software, so I may need a PC once again.

I have a decent MacBook Pro so I wonder if VMWare would do the trick, but the software I’d be working on requires hardware accelerated graphics. Have the VM folks solved that problem? Will Direct3D work? I don’t know the answer to that. These are questions I need to solve so I can decide if spending the cash, and carrying around two laptops, is worth it.

PC Laptops

On Saturday I walked into our local Best Buy to see if I could find a decent 15″ laptop for under $1000. All the laptops were under $1000! That was a big surprise. The thing I quickly discovered is I don’t pay attention to hardware any longer. Since I became a Mac user our choices are limited to a few very high end pieces of hardware, so all you have to decide is how much RAM you’d like and how big the hard drive should be. In the PC laptop world is wild and varied. The one thing I did notice is every laptop I looked at had about 4GB of RAM. That would need to be bumped right away to 8GB and I figure I’d need at least a 500GB drive, but what processor should I get? It’s not like I’m going to use this laptop for anything but coding on Windows.

So, the big question. What sub $1000 laptop is decent enough to install Windows 7/8 and run Visual Studio? It doesn’t have to be the best ever, just good enough.

Comments welcome.

Facebook Is Not Your Brand

I’m not a fan of Facebook. That’s ok, plenty of you are fans. The business world is obsessed with Facebook. I’d imagine most major corporations have a Facebook page by now. Why? Facebook is not your brand. Why should you promote another companies brand by using them as your main page? Why not use your corporate website for that? Sure, you can have a Facebook page, and advertise there, just don’t make that your brands main site. Doesn’t it seem counter to what you’re trying to achieve? Don’t you want the focus to be your brand, not the fact it’s hosted on Facebook?

Here’s a quote from an article in Fortune that left me thinking, you’re doing it wrong.

The Timeline redesign changed all of that. Tabs have been minimized and — more importantly — companies can no longer set a default landing page. For brands, a critical chance to make a first impression is gone. The first thing users now see on Pages is a fluid, ever-shifting Timeline of recent posts and comments

Emphasis is mine. Why in the world would a company rely on something completely out of their control to make a first impression?

Host your content on your website. It’s your brand, it belongs to you. Link to your important content from your Facebook and Twitter account. That’s what the Internet is all about. Links. Facebook is a walled garden. Why trap your content behind those drab blue walls?

BaahHere’s a great example, at least for me it’s a great example. Peter Jackson has been posting updates about the progress on The Hobbit via his Facebook page. I don’t have a Facebook account, so I can’t get behind the wall to see his updates. Why would you make those posts private? Wouldn’t you like 100% of the people who have access to the Internet to have access to those updates? I guess not. Maybe Peter Jackson’s company is being paid handsomely for his Facebook updates?

The big question is, where does that content go when Facebook disappears as a company?

As my brother is fond of pointing out, in the end I guess we’re all just a bunch of sheep, some choose to follow Facebook.

Twitter Crazy Talk

The hubbub over a recent Twitter Engineering post, and all the follow on posts, has me thinking. No, thinking isn’t one of my strong suits, but here’s what I think is going to happen.


Watch out! It's a blog fly!That’s it in a nutshell. Why do I believe that? Today Twitter announced it’s overhauling They just shipped a new release of Twitter for iOS, without a Twitter for Mac update, and now they’ve taken the time to overhaul Something stinks, besides me.

Why would you spend the time and money to overhaul the mobile website if you didn’t intend to make it your primary view of the Twitter Universe on mobile? Ok, ok, maybe they’re perfectionists, who love their craft, I can accept that explanation. Then again, maybe they plan on killing off all native clients? It could happen, right?

There’s my big BOLD prediction.

I hope I’m wrong. In fact I’m pretty sure I am, but there’s that little part of me that thinks this may happen.

Man, I really don’t want to HAVE to use the website to tweet and read tweets. That would be teh suck.