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Good riddance to the Macbook Pro

Posted by joconner on October 31, 2007 at 11:49 AM PDT

After using a Macbook Pro for almost a year, I've returned it to my employer. The FedEx package should arrive today at their doorstep. What a beautiful machine! What a crisp display! What a cool, little magnetic power supply connector that drops off without pulling my laptop to the floor! What a frustrating experience for Java developers!

Sure, I used Parallels to run Windows...to run Java SE 6...to get my everyday work done to create demos and articles about the latest features of the Java platform. I realize now that I was spending more time in Windows on my Mac than in OS X. Sigh...something was wrong. So, now that my work situation at Sun has changed and I've returned the Macbook Pro to my manager, I say "Good riddance!" Not to Sun or my previous manager ... to that Macbook.

My new laptop will run all my applications and games. And it will run Java SE 6. And it will run Windows Vista as its primary OS. Sorry Apple. I tried. Apple failed. I'm a customer that will move on to something that fits my needs better. I recognize and acknowledge that other customers will choose a Macbook Pro to meet their needs, and Apple has a fine product. It just doesn't work for me. I also think I represent a significant potential customer profile -- Java developers who really want an alternative to Windows on their laptop. But Apple doesn't serve that market well. Please don't tell me about 1.5 and the Java 6 preview, etc. I know about all that. My personal conclusion is that Apple does not serve the customer profile I've described. I don't think I'm alone.

I don't want to whine about this. I just wanted to share my recent experience in this area. And while I'm at it, I'll make a controversial statement too:

I posit that the best Java development and deployment platform is Windows, not Mac OS X or Linux or even Solaris. Which host os supports Java Web Start the best? Which host os supports all the latest deployment and desktop integration features the best? I believe Windows wins all around.

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