Friday, March 03, 2006

The soul of the new machines

Oh brave new world! In the past week I've gone from a 15" PowerBook for work/travel to a new 12" bare-bones travel machine, and I'm now in the process of migrating 76 GB of data from my old (half-grapefruit style) iMac to a new Intel iMac.

After consulting with some of the leading authorities on Macs (outside of the reality-distortion field) I made the leap and bought the new Intel machine. Like all the current iMacs, it looks like a big screen (or, rather, a 20" screen embedded in a big plastic frame).

After plugging keyboard and mouse into the machine, and the machine into powerstrip, I found the On button by simply reaching out to where I thought it should be (behind the lower left corner). Once on, the machine asked if I wanted to transfer the contents of an old machine to the new using a FireWire cable. I connected my old and new machines, restarted the old machine while holding down the T key (to put it in target mode) and then clicked to start the data transfer. It said it will take about 4 hours for the 76 GB to transfer, but at the rate it's going, I'm thinking more like 1 hour.

The iMac comes with a Mighty Mouse. I used one of those for the first time last week, and was amused by its teensy track ball. I've been using a very hefty Kensington Optical Elite mouse because the height of it works well for my wrist, but I will give the Mighty Mouse a try.

While the Intel gets up to speed, I'm spiffing up the 12" PB (a refurb that shipped with outdated software) with iLife '06 and iWork '06. I also need to install a GB of additional 3rd-party RAM tomorrow so the machine can handle more graphics-intensive programs. Somewhat to my astonishment, the 12" PB was able to run a 23" external monitor with just 512 MB of RAM.

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