Re: The Apple approach
This is a response to The Apple approach (aka first impressions of the MacBook Pro) post by Antonio Cangiano. I started typing this in comments section on his blog first, but thought this would fit well into my own “Switching to Mac” series.
Antonio Cangiano writes:
Virtually everything that can be accomplished on a Mac with TextMate, when programming in Rails, can also be accomplished with a different OS (e.g. Linux), a different editor (Emacs, Vim, JEdit, etcâ€¦) or web technology (e.g. ASP.NET, J2EE, etcâ€¦). The problem is â€œhowâ€ you accomplish the end result, and what sort of effort, knowledge and time are required to do so.
I donâ€™t feel my time is best spent excessively configuring and fiddling with the tools that are supposed to make me more productive.
It really amazes me that Rails “community” creates such a dependency on the Mac. How is Mac in any way a better Rails platform? I can very easily say “virtually everything that can be accomplished on a PC with Notepad”. I wouldn’t use Notepad, but RadRails (and now Aptana) has served me well. Mac itself offers absolutely zero over a PC as a Rails development platform. You don’t need a Mac to develop in Rails.
Configuring is another issue all together. Getting Rails stack going without “all in one packages” is actually much easier on Windows than it is on OSX. One click Ruby installer comes with RubyGems and you don’t need to install 1GB worth of development tools and then compile RubyGems for 20 minutes. Other development tools are one click installers as well.
The only reason why I personally decided to buy a Mac a week ago was because I wanted a better and lighter laptop than my monster Dell XPS M1710 and I knew that if I didn’t like OSX I can always go back to Windows without changing laptops. It’s very unfortunate that the only company which puts some effort in industrial deign.
I’ve been coding Rails since February this year on PC and feel absolutely no different on a Mac now. In fact, I find some OSX UI to be getting in the way of productivity, but that’s a personal preference issue.