What I Use, Build 2018: MacBook Air (Premium)

I'm taking a Mac to Build 2018, and you're never going to believe what happens next.

Just kidding. I resent the cheapness and clickbait-ness of this kind of manufactured tech experimentation as much as I suspect you do.

But then, that's not what I'm really doing.

In truth, I've spent over two decades keeping up on Windows competitors like the Mac, Linux, and Chrome OS. For the most part, I'm quiet about this work, but it helps inform my opinions about Windows and other Microsoft products and services. Not to mention my opinions about the competition too.

Sitting here in early 2018---in this case, literally, on a plane heading to Seattle---the act of experimenting with alternatives to Windows takes on a new urgency. As I'm sure many of you have noticed, the quality of Windows 10 has nose-dived over the past year or so. Part of this is literal, as seen in the many issues we're experiencing with the latest Windows 10 feature update. And some is more subversive: The steady drumbeat of dumb features, advertising, and other nonsene in Windows 10 is getting worse and worse over time.

And I'm getting frustrated. Frustrated with Windows. And frustrated with Microsoft for chipping away at the quality this thing that I've long supported and still care about very deeply.

This frustration takes many forms, the relevant one here being that I'm able, too often, it seems, to point to some competing offering and see many ways in which it is better than Windows.

Luckily for Microsoft, the competition still lags behind Windows overall: I have no plans, now or in the foreseeable future, to use a Mac, Chrome OS, or Linux in any kind of regular, day-to-day capacity. For all its issues, I still very much prefer Windows.

That said, Microsoft has likewise made it much easier for even those in its sphere of influence to use competing platforms. That makes sense on phones, since Microsoft has no real presence there anymore. But it's true of the desktop, too.

It's especially true of the Mac.

I first used Macs back in the 1980's, and I even owned a tricked-out Apple IIGS for several years before I went to the Amiga. But I bought my first real Mac, an iBook, in early 2001 in order to test Mac OS X, which at that time was the secondary option to OS 9 in a dual-boot system.

And I've owned a lot of Macs. More Macs, in fact, than many real Apple fans. A 12-inch PowerBook. An iMac. Two Mac minis. Two MacBooks (one white, one black). And at least two MacBook Airs. I have a hard time keeping track of them all, to be honest.

My current MacBook Air, which is only very slightly different from the newest model (I believe it's just a single processor generation bump difference) is out-of-date in some key ways. The display is a low-res 1440 x 900 unit with large bezels, an anachronism in this age of Retina displays. The processor is three or four generations of out date. It has no modern connectors, just USB 3.0 (times two), Thunderbolt 2 for vid...

Gain unlimited access to Premium articles.

With technology shaping our everyday lives, how could we not dig deeper?

Thurrott Premium delivers an honest and thorough perspective about the technologies we use and rely on everyday. Discover deeper content as a Premium member.

Tagged with

Share post

Please check our Community Guidelines before commenting

Windows Intelligence In Your Inbox

Sign up for our new free newsletter to get three time-saving tips each Friday

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Thurrott © 2024 Thurrott LLC