April 10, 2009, 5:50 PM — In crime fiction writing, when things got dull, Mickey Spillane suggested having a man with a gun burst through the door. He did that often in his Mike Hammer novels. For technology articles, the equivalent of a “man with a gun” appearing is a new argument about PCs versus Macs. The current one started with Microsoft, playing the “man with a gun,” and their sloppy new Apple Tax survey (Microsoft's 'Apple Tax' Claims Are 'Stupid' Counters Analyst).
The Apple Tax argument carries the argument on after Microsoft's new TV ad campaign showing cute young technology shoppers trying to find their perfect laptop. Amazingly, Apple somehow comes up short. Marketing blather notwithstanding, Microsoft got sloppy again trying to pass off these commercials as being “real people” doing real laptop searching. It wasn't long before new nerd hottie Lauren was outed as a fairly successful actress named Lauren De Long.
Let's leave the long running Microsoft and Apple feud to the fanboys and look at how this nonsense can help you buy your next laptop. Follow the TPT rule of Task-Process-Tools to identify the task you need done, define the process to perform that task, then choose the technology to implement the process.
What task will this laptop perform? What software will it need to use to perform that task? Which type of laptop runs the software applications needed to perform the task at hand? That's the starting point for your laptop shopping list.
If you're a Windows shop, you'll almost certainly stick with Windows. If you're a Mac shop, you'll definitely stick with Mac. If you're truly open to solving the task at hand following a defined process to choose your tool, you may wind up with a netbook, a smartphone, a Linux laptop, or a paper notebook and pen. Follow the TPT road and you'll end up in a happy place.