I got my new MacBook Pro yesterday morning. I was thrilled … it combined the keyboard I’ve loved from the Air with the speed and screen size of the 15″ MacBook Pro. I couldn’t have been happier. And then I felt the crushing blow that was the WWDC Keynote. I fully expected a speed bump — I went and pushed the speed of my new laptop to a custom level because of it. I did not expect such an aggresive update so soon after the announcement of the uni-body machines not too long ago. The battery life is the thing, I travel and sit in meetings without a power outlet — a lot. The extra few hours is a real difference. I also really like the SD slot … one less cable to carry. All in all it is a shame.
The other thing this means is that my love affair with my Air is waning. I still love the form factor, but it has gotten to the point where my expectations of performance has outpaced the affordances of a very small machine. I thought long and hard about a 13″ MacBook, but that was before it became part of the Pro lineup and at the time it didn’t seem to add up. It doesn’t mean however that my “year in the cloud” hasn’t fundamentally changed my computing habits … I am still working really hard to keep my machine lean and mean. I did break down and install Word although I doubt I’ll use it much given how much I rely on Google Docs.
I spent at least half of this past year living mostly on a MacBook Air and I have been very happy with my transition to a mostly cloud based portable experience. I don’t have Office, Adobe PhotoShop, or many other large apps running on it — and I don’t miss them one bit. I have adopted Google Docs, learned how to use Apple’s built in Preview App and iPhoto to do image editing, taken lots of notes in Evernote, listened to my music online at La La, and have used this space and my PSU blog as an outboard brain with much success. I’ve found relying on local storage as being a limiting factor — and I am betting that more and more students will move in this direction this year.
So while I am moving back into the land of a bigger laptop, I am still committed to using less client based software and to keep things floating out there. I just wish that I would have waited another couple of hours to open the damn box for my old MacBook Pro.