DISCALIMER: This is all written from memory – being the old fart I am, there might be things I remember wrongly. I have not researched any of this!
I have always been a DOS person – I remember how I hated it when Windows 3.11 came out, and everyone started using the mouse – who the fuck wanted to use that stupid thing? Everything could be done so much more effective using the keyboards – the mouse was clunky and slow, and made no sense to me. It was no longer the intend to start your computer where the autoexec.bat was fine-tuned in a manner so that it would play the games or run the software at maximum performance, you lost control as Windows started taking control over the processes – and just did stuff without telling you. I was content and happy with DOS 6 – I did not want any of that stupid Windows shit.
At some point (I cannot really remember when) I made a boot option to boot with Windows 3.11 on my DOS machine – I only used it when I needed some software that only ran on Windows – so I rarely used it. This was the way I did stuff, until games that were only compatible with Windows 95 started coming out – ohh what horrors – I had to completely ditch DOS and go all Windows – DOS was now reduced to cmd.
I also started using the mouse – at first I did not see the point (remember those 1’st person shooters, where moving the mouse forward would move the character forward instead of looking around? That must have been the most idiotic idea ever! If i remember correctly, the game “Blood” had this mechanic) but later I started seeing the advantages of the mouse usage in games. “Decent” was one of the first games for me where the mouse really made sense.
From then on, I was a Windows man, there was not really any alternative option if you were a gamer. (except for consoles, but I have never really been a console man)
For me, Mac have always been a bit of a mystery, and Mac owners more so. I never owned a Mac, so I had nothing to say about it, since my experience was very limited, the only thing I could talk about was that the hardware was much more expensive than a regular pc, so from a pure economic perspective it made no sense at all to buy a mac. The funny thing was, that if I even mentioned something about Mac´s that could be taken in any negative way, Mac owners would be over me, and protecting their choice of buyinng expensive hardware – they could go on for hours and hours about how it was more stable, more user friendly… how things just worked.. etc. But it was fun teasing.. so I did that for a couple of years.
Then came the time, where I needed a new computer at work, and since I was in charge of Quality Control, and we needed a Mac for this purpose, we decided to swat two flies with one stroke, and I was to work on a mac from then on.
I was scared, and a little bit exited – I was unsure what was going to happen to me, and if the tales of a “more user friendly and intuitive experience” was to come true – since DOS, I never really liked Windows – it have been usefull, and I could use it for the things that I wanted to use it for, but it was and is a flawed system, and all Windows users know this (and to be honest, we, the Windows users, accept this, since we know that in order for a system to work with so many different types of hardware, so big variations in hardware quality – there is no way it can ever be perfect) But I have NEVER ever heard a Mac owner say anything negative about a Mac. They all go something along the lines of “Since I bought my first mac, I have just loved how easy and perfect it was, I have not regretted it a bit, and I will NEVER go back to Windows!” So as you can probably imagine, my expectations was pretty high in terms of usability!
Then came the day, the Mac arrived. I must say, hot damn it looks good – if a computer could ever be classified as sexy, this was it. I plugged it in, and the OS started installing – to my big surprise, this was pretty much the same experience as installing Windows? Well, I created a user account, and had to start installing software and using the Mac… uhm… drag and drop to install with no instructions? Dragging mounted images to the trash to unmount? There was so many things that were complete an UTTER idiotic usability (much like Windows) and boy, was I disappointed!
Within my first month, I have had all the same kind of problems, you have on a Windows pc, I just had to learn new ways of fixing it or get around it.
After having used the Mac for a few years, I have come to the conclusion – Mac and Windows are the same – they both equally suck – Mac just do it with style!
Now, I have started developing for mac, and this is a whole new adventure for me. Right now it seems rather strange, with a lot of wierd restrictions from Apples side. As an example, I had to buy a mac to develop for iPhone, rather annoying, but I guess that is just how it is.