Oct 102008
 

No. I won’t.

My iMac finally arrived Wednesday so, after almost three years of lusting, learning, and saving, my journey to the Light side is nearly complete.

I worked from home on Wednesday so I could be there to sign for it and have a good portion of the day to set it up. Of course, that meant FedEx didn’t deliver it until 4 p.m. >:-(
On the upside, my half of the office is spotless. There is nothing on the floor in front of the closets for the first time in years, all of my papers are sorted and filed instead of in stacks around and under my desk, and I threw away an entire 30-gallon trash bag full of papers and junk. I also cleaned the desk itself, causing several dust-induced sneezing fits. Once the old PC and monitor are gone it’s gonna be seriously Spartan in there, which is just the way I want it.

The packing was tight and efficient, as expected, containing only the computer, power cable, and a small white box with the keyboard, mouse, and some extras. At first I thought I was missing some items because I couldn’t find the install DVD, but everything was in the white box once I looked more carefully. I’ll post a couple pics of the unboxing later.

Basic setup was incredibly easy: I plopped it on the desk, plugged in the power, keyboard, mouse, and network cables, and fired it up. After the “Welcome to Leopard” intro movie I filled out a few registration questions, set up my free trial of MobileMe, and set about configuring my mail.

I have to admit that, despite buying and reading four different Mac books, and several years’ worth of articles on many Mac-related websites, I was still slightly intimidated that first day: the frickin’ thing is HUGE! It’s like sitting too close to a video wall, and my desk is not small. When I changed the wallpaper to the “hurricane from space” image, I felt like I was looking at Earth from the bridge of the Enterprise.

Once I got through the initial setup, and installed all the current patches and must-have software (Growl, Evernote, etc.), I suddenly had this, “Now what?” moment. All the time that I’d been dying for a Mac I’d built up this mental list of things to configure, install, learn, and do. Now that the thing was finally sitting on my desk that list went right out the window and I was at a complete loss on what to do next. I was paralyzed by too many choices.

Fortunately I recovered quickly and set about transferring all my docs & media from the PC and, thanks to Jake Bouma, got all my iTunes metadata moved as well. Add the installation, patching, and addon transfer of World of Warcraft, and I was on a roll.

On that note, World of Warcraft looks amazing. On my old system I had to run at one resolution notch lower than my monitor’s native setting, with the graphics options for the heavy-duty settings (terrain distance, texture filtering, etc.) at about half. Once I got WoW installed and patched on the new box, as an experiment I cranked everything up all the way and logged into Shattrath City.

It was glorious.

Vivid colors and effects, razor sharp textures with zero pixelation, and a frame rate so high as to make brave men weep.

Once I’ve installed WinXP and Fusion for the few Windows-only apps and games I use, and I’m satisfied I’ve gotten everything I need off the old PC, I’ll wipe the drives, shut it down, and pass it on to some poor soul still consumed by the Dark side.

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