Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Is Mac redefining PC?

Apple may be well on the path to redefine the term PC. For years now, PC has been synonymous with Windows machines - instead of it's true definition of Personal Computer. With the current advertisements from Apple, we may have to adjust our definition of PC.

Don't you just love the new Apple commercials, comparing Windows and the Mac? Whoever is heading up this marketing campaign is earning every dollar of their salary and then some. I am curious to how many people will be receiving their first Mac this year for Christmas. I am pretty sure that I will be part of the crowd.

For years now, I have wondered why so many of my software developer friends prefer Macs to Window machines. I have had the stereotype that Macs were used by people who enjoy web development and graphic design. I always assumed that these types of people was the crowd that Macs were appealing to. My perception changed when I found some hard core Java developers who prefer the Mac environment to Windows. Then, I watched the demo of the latest release of OSX, Leopard, and I was hooked. The features and functionality that comes standard with this OS is simply amazing, and it appeals to everyone, not just software developers.

What does this mean to me? If I am right, and more people start switching from Windows to Mac, then that means that the overall Windows community is going to decline over time - windows specific languages, may not be the best investment of time and effort in learning. The current perception is the .NET should be used to develop desktop applications on the desktop while Java is more suited on the server. In the long run, maybe Java will not only reign supreme on the server side, but also on the desktop.

What are your thoughts?

2 comments:

Jon said...

One thing to keep in mind is that C# / .Net may not necessarily continue to be a Windows-only platform in the future.

Microsoft will shortly be releasing a lightweight version of the .Net CLR that will run on non-Windows platforms (including Mac) in their new Silverlight 1.1 client. (Alpha version available at: http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/silverlight/bb419317.aspx)

Given that, it wouldn't necessarily be a big surprise to see Microsoft release a full version of the CLR for Mac in the future.

There's also the open-source Mono project, which purportedly provides pretty good support for .Net applications on non-Microsoft platforms today. (I haven't played with Mono myself yet, though.)

Jason said...

I think we'll be seeing more things along the lines of the .Net CLR in the near future. Take a look at Parrot, which just released version 0.5.0, for another example.