Friday, May 13, 2011

The Mac Vs. PC Conundrum

I've been trying to decide a good first actual post should be about, when I read another annoying article about why PCs are so much better and cheaper and more efficient than macs and another article blabbing on and on about how much better macs are and outright lying about a lot. So I'd like to clear up a lot of the myths surrounding this debate.
The first thing I'd like to clarify is what a PC actually is, which is a "Personal Computer". A Mac is a PC. Arguably, Macs are more PC than 'PC'. For one reason or another PC has become the short hand for any computer running on windows.
Macs are not immune to Malware.
The most common argument I hear for Macs is that they are invulnerable to viruses and spyware. This is an outright lie. "Macs just don't get viruses". Not true. If a Mac 'genius' or anyone from an apple store told you that Macs do not get viruses, you have been lied to. Before going any further let's just define some words so theres some better understanding. All the time I hear being saying "durr my computer is all slow and stuff I bet I've got some adware virus"

Virus: a self replicating program that destroys system files and shitboxes your computer.
Spyware: a program that monitors and logs activity. May be used by hackers to steal your identity or passwords and shitbox your bank account. May be used by the federal government to catch you downloading child pornography or pirating music so they can shitbox your life.
Adware: programs or scripts that generate advertisements to you.
Trojan: program that creates a 'backdoor' to your computer for hackers to monitor you, steal your dataz, passwords or money, tarnish your reputation, or install viruses and shitbox your computer, your life, or your reputation. Trojans give complete strangers access to your computer.
Malware: a general term that refers to any undesirable programs noted above.

I'd like to go more into malware, how you get them, protect yourself from them and what to do if you have them. But that's a post for another day.

Back to the mac pc debate. Macs are not immune to malware. The most recent and pretty widespread attack is known as "macdefender". MacDefender was a mac targeted attack. You pretty much had to be a moron to be successfully attacked as you'd of had to manually go through it's installation process believe it's ruse and ultimately give it your credit card information. But, this wasn't just some pushover proof of concept virus, this was a legitimate attack aimed at mac users; the same style of attack Windows users have been seeing for years now.

In recent OS updates, Apple has been embedding an anti-virus software into it's operating system, yet they did so as quietly as possible even going as far as removing their "we recommend that you install and anti-virus on your mac" page from the apple website.

There is a plethora of other plain as day lies that mac users use to justify having spent so much on their macs such as "they just work" and "they never crash".  Macs, most certainly do crash.
Generally, The most common PC argument is true. Macs are just plain overpriced.

Apple marks up the cost of hardware by sometimes more than double. Go to and navigate to buy and customize a macpro. Then in a new tab, go to and start looking for the same parts. See for yourself.

When it comes down to it, I would recommend a mac to my grandfather, 60 year old father, or my 16 year old nephew about to go to college. Macs are not immune to malware, and they may crash but OSX has been so simplified that your average shmuck needs to know less about computers to successfully run it through it's lifespan. For someone like me

This is what I would call a personal computer. When I get tired of the GPU or want more ram or want to upgrade any of the hardware, I can pull the side of it off and get to work. Your average shmuck doesn't care about hardware or upgrades or Graphics.
This is not customizable. It's not upgradable beyond (maybe) ram. It is not breakable. In fact for $80 'applecare' insurance, if your mac shitboxes on you, apple will fix it for free. This is the difference. The only big difference and why I'd recommend a mac to your typical user is it's resale value. Go on craiglist and or ebay and try buying a 4 to 5 year old mac.

The real argument isn't Mac VS PC, it's OSX VS Windows. The biggest problem is macintosh right now is the fact that you can not (legally) install OSX on any machine not built by apple. Apple has done a great job of making their software idiot proof and easy to use.

The bottom line is, if video games, upgradability or price matter to you, keep with a home brewed windows or linux (but thats a post for another day) computer. If you want a computer to (for the most part) 'just work', that's been child proofed for you. Spend the extra money. The reason macs are so popular for college students is because college students are so great as shitboxing their computers.

In my next post I'm going to go over smart phones, tablets, and netbooks.


  1. I'm gonna be building my own PC soon most likely. Maybe you could give me a few tips on what to buy. Best bang for buck!