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#133949 - 05/19/10 03:15 PM New Mac Mini
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
I finally broke down and bought a new "Mac Mini" so I can run the latest software.

For the past year or more I couldn't use Google Earth, or Garmin's software, or any number of other apps on my old Mac G4.

It just wasn't worth $150 bucks to upgrade this old box. The Mac Mini and a "KVM" switch to hook it into my existing keyboard, video, mouse, costs about $600.

I'll be able to switch between the old and new computers and share files between them, so I won't have to spend a fortune upgrading software right away either.

I can't run dual monitors off the Mini like phat does, so I'm not near that cool, but I can run the latest Mac and Windows OS off that little Mac Mini wink

Bill
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#133955 - 05/19/10 03:54 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: billstephenson]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By billstephenson

I can't run dual monitors off the Mini like phat does, so I'm not near that cool,


Running multiple monitors doesn't really make you "cool". I do run two monitors a lot, but I'm trying to think of the word I'd use.. it isn't "cool":


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#133979 - 05/19/10 09:13 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: phat]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
That's funny!

And it really hit home too! A few years ago a guy I was sub-contracting for tried to entice me to come work for him at his office building by offering me my own office with a brand new Mac with dual monitors. It was the top of the line he was offering, at least an $8 to $10 grand machine.

But I don't really need dual monitors and speed to code web apps. It's just plain old text, and I'd be worthless in an office environment, so it was pretty easy for me to resist. He could hardly believe it though.

I think I waited long enough for this upgrade though. Spec wise, compared to my old G4 PowerMac, the Mini has twice the RAM, twice the Hard Drive space, twice the number of processors that run nearly twice as fast, it's about one tenth the size, and cost half as much.

If it lives up to half of all that hype it should be as good as what I have and be able to run the latest software I need for the next four years. That should work for me.

I have to admit though, I am pretty excited. There are a lot of new toys I'll get to play with when I get it set up smile

Bill
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"You want to go where?"



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#133998 - 05/20/10 08:50 AM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: phat]
Glenn Offline
member

Registered: 03/08/06
Posts: 2617
Loc: Ohio
"I'm trying to think of the word I'd use.. it isn't "cool":"

OCD?
Anal-retentive?
Control freak?

As a practicing accountant, I can relate authoritatively to all three. (Karol says I invented the first two; I tell her I didn't invent them, but I did perfect them.) grin

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#134058 - 05/21/10 08:23 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: billstephenson]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
Got the new Mac Mini, it's pretty sweet. Still working on my KVM switch. Cables and adapters, SOS frown Found them at eBay for a third of what Best Buy wanted, and they're on there way smile

The new video codecs are sure cool. Big improvement over what I've been seeing. Hulu and YouTube work now. I thought it was my slow connection.

And "GarageBand" is fun! I even pulled out my ancient "Peavy" guitar and plugged it in to the mini and man, I can ROCK now! "Woodstock Fuzz" smile

I haven't got to hooking up my old GPS yet, but I'm not too sure that Garmin's "Basecamp" is going to see it, and it won't work with my old MapSource maps, so I'm not sure what I'll end up doing there. (spend more $$$)

I think I can still get my National Geographic "Topo! maps running on it, so that's good for printed maps.

So far, I'd have to say the little Mac Mini is worth the price. It's quiet, fast, decent graphics, and the new Mac OS is certainly "The" state of the art.

Bill
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#134323 - 05/27/10 02:23 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: Glenn]
sabre11004 Offline
member

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 513
Loc: Tennessee
I am going with Glenn on those three...sabre11004... goodjob
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#134516 - 06/01/10 04:37 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: billstephenson]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
I got my KVM (Keyboard/Video/Mouse) switch hooked up today so I can finally use both my old and new computers without having to turn them off and on and switch cables.

And I got the latest National Geographic "TOPO!" software running on the miniMac. For me, for some reason it was hard to both find the software and install it, but once I did get it working it really does work a lot better than the version on the old G-4 Mac, so it was worth it.

The Belkin KVM switch is pretty cool. I'm still using the old mac for surfing the web and email, and doing all my real work on the new mac. The only software I've put on the new mac is that which I could get free upgrades for.

With the two macs networked as well I can even run all my old software on the new mac, while it still resides on the old mac.

So, as far as geekiness goes, I think you must have more than one monitor and computer hooked up to your single work station if you really want to control the world.

Since I only meet one of those criteria I'm still not there yet frown

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#134630 - 06/03/10 02:08 AM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: billstephenson]
phat Offline
Moderator

Registered: 06/24/07
Posts: 4107
Loc: Alberta, Canada
Originally Posted By billstephenson

So, as far as geekiness goes, I think you must have more than one monitor and computer hooked up to your single work station


I'm sitting in my nerd cave at home. I have two 26 inch lcd flatpanels hooked up to my desktop workstation, a generic quad core intel machine. The monitors are also hooked up to a dual G4 macintosh build machine. I have two laptops on the desk as well - a MacBook pro and a lenovo. I have an HP/PA RISC workstation, and the G4 mac under the desk, and a Zaurus (arm based critter) on the desktop. In the server closet next to my desk are tucked away making noise, a Dell 1425, Sunfire x2200, DEC Alpha rackmounted, Sun V120, and SparcStation20. Everything but the laptops is doing Operating System builds. My workstation talks to their consoles over serial ports and has 16 serial ports on it to debug kernels...

So if you're truly nerdy - you talk to most of your computers over serial connections. not monitors and keyboards.


Edited by phat (06/03/10 02:09 AM)
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#134754 - 06/05/10 09:28 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: phat]
Cstolworthy Offline
member

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 74
Loc: American Fork, Utah
Originally Posted By phat

So if you're truly nerdy - you talk to most of your computers over serial connections. not monitors and keyboards.


I don't use serial, but I do use SSH. laugh I don't program that low level, I work in C#.

In my house currently I have:

In a closet, headless (no monitor, keyboard or mouse):

A P3 1Ghz, 1 gig or ram, 4 8Gig 10K RPM SCSI drives in raid 5, Server as my router running IpCop.

A p3 800 4U Dell server running Ubuntu Server.
A p3 800 4U Dell server running OpenSuSe.

A Sempron 2800+ running WinXp
A Sempron 2800+ running Win7

A custom built server running a Core i7 with 12 Terabytes of storage.

About 5 laptops, and another 4 desktops that are between repairs.


My personal computer is a Core 2 Duo E8800, 4 Gigs of ram, ATI HD 4600 , and 2x 80Gig WD Velociraptor 10K RPM drives in raid 0, with a 24" widescreen monitor.
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#134836 - 06/08/10 09:42 AM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: Cstolworthy]
billstephenson Offline
Moderator

Registered: 02/07/07
Posts: 3889
Loc: Ozark Mountains in SW Missouri
I'm not sure you and phat don't control the world now. If not, I'm pretty sure you could wink

I'm just a lowly perl programmer. Mostly I code CGI stuff for web apps.

I also write HTML and CSS, but I'm just barely proficient at either, and I copy and paste Javascript.

I don't know why, but perl is more intuitive for me. I can read simple Javascript, but I still have a hard time writing it.

I might dabble again with Apple's Objective C on the mini. I doubt I'll make it far though. I generally get stuck wondering why I need to put a "null" statement at the end of a function.

Apple's "DashCode" seems to provide a sort of bridge for little web driven desktop apps. I'll be looking close at that too. There's a lot of really cool stuff in one of those "Mac Mini's".

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#135927 - 07/06/10 11:25 PM Re: New Mac Mini [Re: billstephenson]
Pat-trick Offline
member

Registered: 06/22/09
Posts: 175
Loc: Portland, OR
you guys need to go camping
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