I was a long-term Windows user, from version 3.0 back in 1991 or so, until Windows XP in 2004. Over that time, I got to be pretty familiar with Windows. And by 2004, I had had enough of it. I figured that I easily spent about one work week of each year just fixing my computer. People who work in medium to large companies do just fine with Windows as they have experts on staff or on call to diagnose and fix any problems. But as a self-employed person, I am my own computer fixer, my own IT department. Time spent on computer maintenance and troubleshooting is time that I can’t spend on productive work.
I had mixed feelings my first month or two with the Mac. I was busy, and I felt that every little thing that was different on the Mac was something that slowed me down. I still think that Windows Explorer is a little more functional than the OS X Finder. The Apple mouse was truly bad and hasn’t seen the light of day since that first month. Even so, more than three years later, I’m happy to write that I spend much less time as a computer maintenance guy. And as I’ve learned numerous shortcuts and customized the system to my liking, the system has just become more efficient for me over time. OS X’s fantastic Spotlight search feature saved me a lot of time when Windows had no comparable technology. (I understand that Windows Vista has added a similar feature.)
Macs are not perfect and the statement that “they just work” is not always true. Defective parts do slip through, and I frankly don’t believe anyone who says their Mac has never frozen up. Every computer fails eventually, so backups are essential. Macs generally work very well, however, and they require very little attention. They don’t get in the way of my real work. Sure, the hardware looks nice, and I love good design, but sheer prettyness is a small consideration next to such key factors as reliability and functionality. That’s why I use and recommend Mac.