Home is where the hardware is

Friday, 3 November 2006 — 12:10pm | Computing

I am proud to say that I have finally been repatriated to the mother country.

For those of you who are new to the show, I was born and raised on the bourgeois luxuries of Apple Macintosh computing products. As a child, I eschewed “playing” with “friends” in favour of cutting my teeth on HyperCard scripts and hacking resource forks in ResEdit. I look back now, and I’m actually astounded at what a bona fide Mac expert I was before I hit puberty and Apple hit rock bottom. I suspect I knew more about computers then than I did after completing (NP-completing?) my degree, though back then I was still playing in the QuickBASIC sandbox and mischievously tying GOTO statements in impossible knots, and didn’t know what objects were (because nobody knew what objects were, and a lot of them still don’t).

I remember the beginning of the PowerPC era, since my first machine was a hand-me-down Macintosh SE with 2MB of RAM, one of the last of the Motorola dynasty. Now I return at the end of the PowerPC era, with a Core 2 Duo MacBook Pro (which I have christened “Scrapple from the Apple” after the Charlie Parker tune, as “Penny Lane” was already taken), and the landscape has changed considerably. I’d say it’s for the better. I left my fruitful homeland in the first place because of its crippling compatability issues, none of which remain a problem. As for what to do with the Windows copy of Civilization IV beckoning me to log another hundred hours of virtual conquest, I suppose there’s always Boot Camp – or, better yet, actually getting work done.

I want to develop for this platform. I have never said that for a Windows machine. In fact, I don’t think I ever said that for a Linux or BSD machine, either (having worked on those out of necessity and convenience). During my BSc, I don’t think I wrote a single line of code that didn’t pertain to my assigned course work; it’s suitably ironic that it’s as an English major that I’m reading up on the finer points of Objective-C and the Cocoa API for fun and sport.

I’m properly armed with my arsenal of utility-belt essentials (Zyzzyva, Quackle, TeXShop, Xcode, and so on and so forth) and ready to take on the future… or at least play around with Exposé. Zip! Now you see them, now you don’t! All I need is a screensaver involving flying toasters, and I’m set.

(I have just written most of this post in a widget. Intriguing. For my next trick, I think I’ll redesign this entire site.)


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