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Author Topic: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store  (Read 12246 times)

Alan Smallbone

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2017, 10:41:02 AM »

I don't have problems with my Windows 10 computers, laptop etc. My main desktop I put it together myself, tinkered with it, used Win 7 for a long time and now Win 10. It works great and reliable. I have some Apple products and I use an Android phone. While the only reason I have the ipad is for my drone and some of the art apps. I really hate the way the Apple systems work. I cannot just plugin to a usb port and copy images to or from, no I have to go through itunes. Itunes as it turns out really is horrible on a pc, crashes, slow, archaic methods of file transfer. My Android phone I can connect to my pc, go to the directory and copy the images from or to my pc and have it done by the time itunes starts and loads and decides it wants to talk to the ipad. Same with the Android tablet. I can get way more bang from my buck with a pc and android.
So that is my rant. I don't get the Apple blindness that can occur but that is just me. My systems run and I put up with the over control that Apple enforces when I have to.

Alan
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Alan Smallbone
Orange County, CA

Alan Smallbone

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #21 on: January 19, 2017, 10:48:19 AM »

The other thing I notice is that Apple users do have a lot of issues and complain and complain and then like a drug they forget after a few weeks, and make statement like "it just works". It just works except when Apple updates the OS, then everything dies until the apps are updated, drivers are updated. Then Apple does the scorched Earth implementation,  and in order to run new apps you have to have a new overpriced computer. I hear that a lot. Lets face it Windows is a lot more friendly about older apps, yes that can cause problems but it is usually the older software causing the problems and not Windows. I am trying to make it like I am some ultra Windows fan boy, these operating systems all have problems. They are tools, I use the ones that work well for me and runs within my budget. I prefer the openness of Windows and Android even though that comes with its own set of considerations. I really dislike the forced paths of the Apple OS.

Alan
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Alan Smallbone
Orange County, CA

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #22 on: January 19, 2017, 11:34:23 AM »

My experiences with Apple and Microsoft are long and varied. Many, many years ago I worked for a bank in the trust department following the technology companies. One conference I attended was put on by Ben Rosen, a technology guru who later became head of Compaq Computer. The event was held at the Lake Geneva, Wisconsin Playboy Club. One of the keynotes was given by Steve Jobs. Apple had recently come out with the Apple II. Steve was a very solid speaker, but the techie showed as well. I asked if Apple was at risk because so much of their business at the time was generated by the exclusive presence of VisiCalc on their platform. VisiCalc was the first spreadsheet application. Couldn't IBM or DEC put VisiCalc, or a similar application, on their mainframe or mini computer and bury Apple? Steve's answer was simple and brilliant. When you move your cursor one cell to the right in VisiCalc all is good. Until, that is, you move to a cell off the screen. Then the whole screen needs to be re-painted. That takes a lot of power (in those days) for a split-second. Mainframes and mini computers can't guarantee enough processing power for a specific user on their timesharing machines for the screen-roll time to be acceptable. But an Apple, while much less powerful, had power to spare. Simple and brilliant.

Many years later I got to watch a Steve Jobs' product release show in San Francisco. One of the key things being introduced was the new chip in the Mac. It was made by IBM and was so powerful its shipment to certain foreign countries was restricted by the U.S. government. There was a slide with three M1 tanks surrounding one of the chips on a pedestal. This was no longer a presentation by a techie casually talking WITH the audience. It felt like there was more ego on the stage than in the rest of the audience combined.

In between these two presentations I had a chance to see Bill Gates present at a keynote in Las Vegas during a Comdex show. Bill was not a polished speaker.  He certainly knew his stuff and had excellent slides, based around the popular TV show of the time, Twin Peaks. While Steve Jobs was very different in his two presentations, he was still much more comfortable with his audience. Bill didn't seem to be.

During the time of Bill Gates' presentation and Steve Jobs second presentation I worked for HP. Because of this I have always been a Windows user. It is interesting that both the Mac and Windows operating systems have their basis in the same Smalltalk user interface built into the Xerox Star computer. Back in my days as an investment analyst I had a private presentation from Xerox when Smalltalk came out. All the mouse-based point-and-click of today started back there. Apples have always been easier to use than Windows systems. In the earlier days they were more stable as well. But learning curves are only important for a short while. Once you use a system for any length of time the break in time goes away. Also, Microsoft pretty much eliminated the instability issues around Windows XP. I think the last blue-screen-of-death I saw on a Windows machine was over a decade ago.

I still am a Windows user. It is what I am familiar with. But there is another reason: I don't like Apple. I don't like Adobe either. Both companies actively do things to lock their customers into their ecosystems. And they do so even though they know full well that many of their customers don't like it. Apples' iTunes and Adobe's subscription-only models are examples. I just don't like dealing with companies that take their customers for granted. For most of my photography in the recent digital days I use micro four thirds. I went this way because there were two strong companies competing for my business and both were very creative. Canon, Nikon and Sony ran much more closed environments. You can find lenses elsewhere, but not cameras. In micro four thirds I have had cameras from both Panasonic and Olympus and lenses from both as well.

One final note. During my time at HP I had occasion to visit the HP Cupertino campus many times. It is gone now. Rising from its ashes is the new Apple megaplex. I have visited both Apple and Microsoft stores. But then again, I am a techie at heart and still fondly remember Sharper Image stores as well.
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Peter McLennan

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #23 on: January 19, 2017, 12:21:50 PM »

I tried to make an iPad Mini work as a photo travel solution and it failed.

No wonder. iOS has no file system accessible to the user.  Game over.

My $300 13" touchscreen Lenovo ThinkPad EDU series works just fine as a travel photo computer. It's not a computing powerhouse, but I don't care. I can view 40MB NEFs quickly and easily. I'll do my serious work when I get home.  Two 2TB USB drives from Costco and I have a heck of a system for less than the price of an iPad.
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MattBurt

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #24 on: January 19, 2017, 12:34:52 PM »

No wonder. iOS has no file system accessible to the user.  Game over.

My $300 13" touchscreen Lenovo ThinkPad EDU series works just fine as a travel photo computer. It's not a computing powerhouse, but I don't care. I can view 40MB NEFs quickly and easily. I'll do my serious work when I get home.  Two 2TB USB drives from Costco and I have a heck of a system for less than the price of an iPad.

Right! It was just not the tool for the job. I got it for free from my employer so I thought it was worth a try. Then I bought that i5/4GB/128GB Surface Pro on eBay for $400 and use an old 500GB laptop drive in an enclosure with it for a very lightweight and capable enough travel system and it has been good. Like you I save the real work for when I return so it's good enough for social media, previewing, and backing up my images on the road.
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adias

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2017, 03:52:25 PM »

Everything seems to take a religious zeal these days. Computers, cameras, etc. are just tools and competition is good.

bobtowery

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #26 on: January 19, 2017, 05:18:53 PM »

Curious to me that some of you are having issues with the Surface. I have had Surface Pro 3 and 4. We have several more at the office, and I have numerous friends with them. Completely bulletproof. I use LR on it extensively, Office 365 apps, a video program, etc.

AFAIK it is lighter and thinner than available airbooks. Screen resolution is awesome. Plus, once you have touch (screen) it is hard to be without.

There were several articles written about the Apple/Microsoft dynamic on the day the Surface Studio was announced, as Apple had a product announcement event the same day. Whoa, added the "track bar!"

Here is one: http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-macbook-touch-bar-vs-microsoft-surface-studio-2016-10

I always thought Microsoft would turn into the next IBM. Big, old, a worn out aircraft carrier that can't get out of its way. But now that I live in Seattle, and attend some meetings with Microsoft people, I can see that isn't going to happen. They have a bunch of young, smart, people. They are doing innovative work.

(disclosure, I'm not an apple user :>)

As far as the demo unit Kevin tried locking up, I should think they'll solve that.

armand

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #27 on: January 19, 2017, 07:48:23 PM »

Curious to me that some of you are having issues with the Surface. I have had Surface Pro 3 and 4. We have several more at the office, and I have numerous friends with them. Completely bulletproof. I use LR on it extensively, ....

On my part it was mostly the fact that I couldn't find a small dongle with a SD card reader and another USB that will reliably detect both a connected hard drive and an SD card in the same time so I can copy directly from the card to the hard drive. I was compromising in copying first to the Surface hard and from there to the external HDD. I don't know if it was an issue with the power, I'll try with an external SSD.

Probably on version 5 when they will have a USB-C (or two) there will be good enough.
The other thing is that I don't know why they kept the fanless version only with the base version, more RAM and a 256GB would have made it quite attractive.

Wayne Fox

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #28 on: January 19, 2017, 10:26:29 PM »

I was mystified to read that anyone could blow $400 on dongles. All is not lo$t at Apple.
Interesting.  I bought the new MacBook Pro, and only have 3 dongles, mainly because I attach the computer to other displays at two locations.  So I bought one of the Hyperdrive mini-docks that has mini-display port  usb and an SD card slot, as well as  1 thunderbolt 2 dongle and one for HDMI. I had two dongles for my old macBook Pro (granted I didn't need them anymore, but I needed them when I first bought  the first thunderbolt MBP.)  Sort of a pain, but USB _C does seem to be one of the "holy grails" ... all devices could interconnect with the same cable.

I will say I'm not sold on Touchbar, seems cool so far isn't very  useable.  Safari tabs are too small to make out and everything on the bar seems to be something that can be handled on the screen with a quick mouse click, so why would I move my hand to the touch bar when i'm already moving the cursor with the trackpad.  I think there are some things that would make it much more useful, like customized buttons to perform actions I choose.  I would love it if Ps would just put the name of the action I've assigned to a function key into the bar instead of just leaving them labeled F1, F2 etc.  So maybe it will get better.  Then again, I only use the computer non tethered and open when I travel so I'll need to take it on a trip or two and maybe I'll find the TouchBar a little more useful.

I will admit the slight weight decrease ( i think it is a little over .75 lbs?) was noticeable to me when I put it in my back pack.

john beardsworth

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #29 on: January 20, 2017, 04:37:45 AM »

I imagine Kevin must have bought a dongle for each peripheral, rather than one for each of the ports. After all, if you don't mind blowing hundreds on dollars, who wants to carry around a sleek new laptop with dongles sticking out of every hole? ;)

The USBC-only configuration lost them one sale here, along with the extra price rise in the UK (due to the stupid Brexit vote's impact on the Pound). I don't dislike the touch bar, but it wasn't a selling point for me. A poor substitute for a touch screen or for adding fingerprint recognition to the trackpad?

But as someone who is more PC than Mac-based, I do share Kevin's feeling for the Apple store. I seriously loathe greeters or being approached by sales assistants, but the Apple store is one of very few places where one has ever made me open my wallet. The guy listened to what I was trying to achieve before showing me a solution I hadn't considered (it was an Apple TV). You walk out of the big London stores in Regent Street and Covent Garden as if you've just visited a cathedral.

John

Hans Kruse

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #30 on: January 20, 2017, 06:43:32 AM »

I bought 3 USB adapters, one TB3 to TB2 adapter and one HDMI adapter. That was less than $200 including 25% VAT in Denmark. Some people speculate about touch for MacOS and it is a bit odd as Apple has said quite clearly that they are not planning MacOS to be touch enabled. I have no need for touch on my MBP. I love the iPhone and iPad Pro and I don't use (or want) a keyboard with the iPad. what Microsoft has made with the big touch screen is like a huge iPad. The 13" iPad Pro can be used quite effectively with the pen to create artistic work. See here http://www.apple.com/apple-pencil/. Except for the size Apple already had this before Microsoft came with the Surface big screen. I like the new MBP 2016 with the 5K LG external screen. For me this is the ideal setup as a travelling photographer. The touch bar is not yet so useful especially since there is not an external keyboard with it. Within the next half year I'm sure there will be a lot of app support for the touch bar including Photoshop and Lightroom. Will it be a game changer for me, probably not. Has Apple lost the innovation skills? The big thing was the iPhone and the iPad was just a bigger iPhone in a way. Since then the new products have been improvements on the same idea. The Mac is the same and has been improved over the many years in existence. From a helicopter view it hasn't changed much. We have seen new and faster hardware, better and higher resolution screens. If people are expecting game changers as innovation, Apple would have to come up with a totally new product and I don't see Microsoft doing that either. Such game changers only happen rarely and the rest is refinement of existing ideas.

It is often mentioned that there is an almost religious affection to products and companies. Personally I have used Windows in the past. It worked for me but many things annoyed me. I changed to Mac in 2009 (I also used Mac in the 90'ties but change to Windows NT in 1997 which was a relief) and have been very happy with the Mac since then. I would change to Windows if there was a better product there for me. So far I have liked the Mac more than Windows, but have not tried Windows since Windows 7 so my view could be different today.

Look at game changers the Tesla model S EV and autonomous driving that will come in a couple of years is a real game changer. But these game changers are rare. When they come other quickly come in and make compering products like Microsoft did with Windows after the Mac came out. Like Android after the iPhone. Sometimes I'm wondering people really think of when they talk about lack of innovation. Do they have any idea about what that should be? Typically no, just asking for something completely new. If I knew what the next game changer would be, I would not reveal it :)

The experience that Kevin had with the Microsoft store is one I often have when going into a store. The personnel are not very knowledgeable and they don't keep an eye on the customer and when to approach. I have been in an Apple Store once and I could go around without being approached immediately which I liked and then I was asked if I had questions or needed help. Quite pleasant and professional. But I would not generalize based on one experience. Some people make analogies with religion and cathedrals and this is really ridiculous in my opinion. When people are defending the tools they use I find that most of the time they simply rationalize their purchase and decision. Tools are just tools and they only make sense for us to achieve the results we look for and in our case, the resulting photos. That seems trivial to me, but I value good discussions about tools and techniques and there are many good discussions on this forum.

john beardsworth

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #31 on: January 20, 2017, 07:28:29 AM »

Some people speculate about touch for MacOS and it is a bit odd as Apple has said quite clearly that they are not planning MacOS to be touch enabled.... The 13" iPad Pro can be used quite effectively with the pen....

They'll say it equally clearly, until the day they do enable it - and then they'll pretend they are innovating. After all, "who wants a stylus?"

Hans Kruse

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #32 on: January 20, 2017, 08:22:07 AM »

They'll say it equally clearly, until the day they do enable it - and then they'll pretend they are innovating. After all, "who wants a stylus?"

The pen is useful for certain types of work like what is shown on the Apple page I linked to. I don't use the pen for "normal" content consumption and light e-mail writing etc. on the iPad. That is my observation of how Apple views it. A touch enabled laptop of desktop does not appeal to me at least, but I will not try ridicule those who like it ;) or rationalize why they are wrong. I don't believe Apple will make a touched enable MacOS.

john beardsworth

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #33 on: January 20, 2017, 09:26:19 AM »

The pen is useful for certain types of work like what is shown on the Apple page I linked to. I don't use the pen for "normal" content consumption and light e-mail writing etc. on the iPad. That is my observation of how Apple views it. A touch enabled laptop of desktop does not appeal to me at least, but I will not try ridicule those who like it ;) or rationalize why they are wrong. I don't believe Apple will make a touched enable MacOS.

Maybe not "MacOS" or even porting iOS to the desktop, but they're bound to bring together the code bases before long and then claim they invented touch. I'm not ridiculing anyone for liking the iPad stylus, just pointing out Steve's quote was a great example of that.

Hans Kruse

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #34 on: January 20, 2017, 12:08:56 PM »

Maybe not "MacOS" or even porting iOS to the desktop, but they're bound to bring together the code bases before long and then claim they invented touch. I'm not ridiculing anyone for liking the iPad stylus, just pointing out Steve's quote was a great example of that.

You think so and I don't think that :) Is there any evidence or signs that what you say will happen? Steves quote was as far as I remember for the phone at the time when the iPhone was announced. At that time the PDA's all used a stylus. A pen is useful for certain operations but not for all operations and I believe this was his point. Apple could make a laptop running IOS for sure, but what sense would that make? They already have with the iPad with a the keyboard. I find touch great for a tablet but not for a laptop with a keyboard. I think we have laptops from Apple without touch for the next 10 years. What happens after that is speculative. But I maybe wrong and it would be the first time :)

john beardsworth

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #35 on: January 20, 2017, 01:27:04 PM »

They already market the iPad Pro as a computer, so that convergence is already happening, and Apple won't maintain two codebases unnecessarily. Right now, the touch strip's just a so-what feature, harmless enough though.

uaiomex

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #36 on: January 20, 2017, 01:55:04 PM »

And it just begun!


Everything seems to take a religious zeal these days. Computers, cameras, etc. are just tools and competition is good.
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john beardsworth

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #37 on: January 20, 2017, 02:44:21 PM »

Has it? I'm just defending my point that I don't like certain features and they put me off buying.

Rather than question someone's motives, why not make a grown-up argument?

speedyk

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #38 on: January 20, 2017, 03:17:29 PM »

Random notes...

-Funny that walking in an MS store felt like sinning. Feels like slumming to me, but it's because there's so little attention to detail, they do not have a fanatic and never did. Now that Win 10 has been shoved down users gullets, the newest version are set up to slurp all sorts of data as you use them and it cannot be fully turned off. On a Mac you can use Little Snitch and catch Apple doing the same thing but prevent it or let it go.

-Touchbar is a reuse of Apple Watch tech, since those aren't selling well, Apple is trying to get something out of it. Typical product-guy thinking, but it might yet find a use. Meanwhile it presents a hazard of Apple looking a bit more lost than they are. But sometimes forgotten are all the preious misfires and how they just kept releasing things until they got better.

-When I worked as an Applecare support guy, I fixed a lot of mistakes over the phone that "geniuses" made in person. I find the Apple Store experience to be a bit like a church store, everyone inside is a believer and there's a hushed solemnity. I never ever buy anything there, but sometimes visit to check on something for someone I support. I've had Apple training, there are two ways to do something, the Apple way and the right way, not always the same.

-The Surface issue does sound like power to the USB ports not being enough, try a powered drive (separate power supply) and see if it persists.

-Was reading the story of Bugatti automobile this morning, after Ettore passed on the company floundered and was absorbed by another company; plenty of energy and capacity but no vision and so no sales. They were relying on old obsolete chassis and so forth because of sentiment towards Ettore and Jean Bugatti. We can all find examples of this in any human organisation. We saw it in Leica for some years (the Franklin Mint of camera companies), now the M10 looks great, my hands can practically feel it from here.

-Right now all operating systems work well enough, but none of them are really very good. Apple's has been declining for years, MS are trying but clearly swamped by organisational and legacy issues, Linux is amazing in some parts and exasperating in others, because devs work on what they want to.

-Apple won't merge iOS and macOS code until the devices use the same chips. But of course they are reusing parts for various reasons.
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MattBurt

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Re: True Confessions: I Walked Into a Microsoft Store
« Reply #39 on: January 20, 2017, 04:36:02 PM »

I've never been to an Apple store or a Microsoft store.  8)
Or a Linux store for that matter! ;)
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