It is funny how something you think you could not live without can slide to the point of not being nearly as indespensable as time passes.
I went to work for Apple in 1984 because the Macintosh inspired me. It let me do things that I could not do with other computers which in my case included my Apple IIe.
Over the years, I have done everything with my Macs from design newsletters to produce a DVD of my youngest daughter's prom. I have written thousands of articles using Macs. There are countless web pages that I created with one or other of the Macs which passed through our home. I don't even want to think of how many spreadsheets I built with Excel.
Spending four years selling real estate forced me to spend more time with Windows. Eventually I became impressed with Windows 7. I have dubbed it the most reliable operating system that I have ever used though I will have to give Ubuntu Linux a close second.
The last three Macs that I have purchased have not been ones that would help someone become a big Mac fan. I have stayed a Mac user in spite of my experience with them. My current iMac which I wrote about in an article entitled My iLemon on readwrite web is the kind of product that could turn anyone against a company.
Still I plan to continue using a Mac even though I have just gotten a new Windows 8 machine. It is interesting what no longer holds me to a Mac and what keeps me on the platform.
I have written two Kindle books this year. While much of the writing was done on the Mac, the final editing was done on Microsoft Word on Windows. I tried doing one book completely on the Mac using Word and it just didn't work exactly right. There were some differences which caused extra work and that is the last thing you need when writing a book. Word on Windows was the magic bullet.
There are two third party apps that I like which are not available on Windows. One is Rapidweaver which I use for the design of one of my websites. The other is Pixelmator which I use for graphics work that I used to do in Photoshop.
While I haven't found an exact replacement in Windows for Rapidweaver, I have found that Wordpress on my own domain can create a very nice presence. In essence I could live without Rapidweaver. I've also found that the combination of Lightroom on Windows and some tools available in Picasa pretty much cover what I do with Pixelmator on the Mac.
I have already written at length that I can live without iPhoto so what is left keeping me on the Mac? It certainly isn't iTunes.
It is actually pretty simple, I stay on the Mac because I make several DVDs a year. There is no platform that I have found that comes with "free" tools as well integrated as iPhoto, iMovie, and iDVD.
It is not a perfect solution since it is not unusual to have a problem somewhere along the way, but it is better than anything that I have found in the Windows world. One of the first things that I looked at on my new Windows 8 system was the movie creation software. The Windows movie software has made huge strides and is fine for doing YouTube videos, but it is no iMovie.
And without the power of something like iMovie, there is not much sense in searching for something equivalent to iDVD in the Windows world. I've just done DVDs of our church's three different Christmas services. I cannot imagine doing them on anything but a Mac.
While I would love to have a new tower to continue with my iDVD projects, I suspect that I will have to get by with a Mac Mini.