Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Saturday, September 26, 2009
I vividly remember the day I received my Dell Inspiron laptop, back in July'05. Being my first laptop, my excitement was simply uncontrollable, more than that of a child running behind an ice-cream truck. I purchased the laptop against all thoughts by people around me, advising me that a laptop will be of no use to somebody with a PC at work. When have I ever listened to people!
After four years of merciless usage (perhaps I should call it 'rape' for the lack of a better word), I decided to part with the laptop. I decided to give it to my dad, who got addicted to using it in the last 5 months. I wouldn't lose a 12 inch beauty like that without a bigger replacement. I have always had my eye on the MacBook and thanks to iPhone, my love on Apple only got doubled in the recent times.
There I was, last week, cringing and squirming at work, waiting unbearably for the MacBook to be shipped. I even left work early and for the next 5 hours, nothing mattered in this world – it was just me and the MacBook. I wanted to explore the MacBook and I did to my hearts content.
Having used the MacBook for a few days now, I thought I'll share some of my initial thoughts on using the Mac.
For a first time Mac user, I thought there'll be absolutely no learning to do. I was terribly wrong. End of first day, I wondered if I should buy the 'MacBook: Idiot's learning guide' book (if there was one).
There is a slight ramp-up curve involved, when one starts to use a MacBook. If somebody tells you that Macintosh is intuitive, laugh on their face. Seriously, do it. (I can't imagine the number of calls Apple customer service gets from people asking simple questions like 'how do I install this application? Or how do I disable applications from start-up?')
Most tasks which seems like a childs-play in a PC are not in a Mac. (I can't believe how many times I would have googled/asked my friend Amar for even simpler tasks, such as - how to make the Mac recognize my canon camera once I connect it!)
Wait a minute, my view has been too lop-sided, talking only about the cons of the macbook. All said and done, MacBook is a very successful product. It indeed has a lot of good features.
First comes the hardware. Their design definitely is much better than other PCs I have seen/used. With a light single-solid-aluminum unibody enclosure, the laptop is overall thin and light, yet being strong and durable. I certainly feel good when it sits on my lap.
Trackpad: My most favorite feature of the laptop. There is no specific mouse button, the trackpad is one large button. The trackpad seems so large, I can almost sleep and roll on it. And the umpteen cool 'jing-chaks' like pinch-the-trackpad to zoom in/out, rotate-fingers to rotate images, two-fingers-swipe to scroll, three-fingers-swipe to flip photos/pages, four-fingers-swipe to move windows and twenty-fingers-swipe to cast a vote at the White house. No, there is no twenty fingers feature yet!
Interface: Some of the cool features like Expose and Spaces, ichat (with video), Dashboard are definitely cool despite one's doubts of ever using them.
Other minor yet noticeable features such as magnetic charger connector, doorless CD slot, large separated keys, bright LED screen are certainly nice and does grab one's attention.
Overall, MacBook has definitely been a cooler gadget. But for some initial start-up glitches, I have been a satisfied Macbook owner.
I don't think it can ever match the intuitiveness of a PC, but only Apple could make a laptop like this!
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
If you want to watch a movie, which does not have huge up's and down's, yet trying to keep your attention in its own steady pace, maintaining the subtle day-today humour continuously and a fucking hilarious 1-minute climax, Extract is the movie you should watch!
P.S: I so am attracted towards owning a 5-series BMW and be the owner of a factory (in India).
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
I amaze myself at the amount of time I spend taking pictures. There have been times I have spent two hours or so photographing a simple bridge or a lighthouse. Every single time, I would be surprised at how fast the time flies. I seriously have to give it to people who accompany me in such trips, God must have blessed them with abundant patience! I'm not sure if I would be waiting so patiently if I were them!
For somebody in my stage, every single photograph is a learning experience. Each photo is a challenge. Every photo makes me understand the technology better. More than the photo, what fascinates me is the time I spend planning for the moment, researching, taking the picture, feeling satisfied or taking the picture again with different settings or try everything all over.
A small example is yesterday's lazy afternoon. I was absolutely bored as parents were asleep after a tiring trip to Cleveland Air show the previous day. I was doing vetti browsing and stumbled upon some water-splash shots in the internet. After a few minutes of reading/researching, I was at my bathroom, with my camera sitting on the tripod aiming at the wash basin. With a glass bowl, a red backpack and some water, I came with this shot:
I took over 120 pictures to get about 4 shots I liked. I was quite satisfied, yet exploring my areas of improvement. Here is the setup I used (in case anyone is curious, I used the comb as the point to focus, as I expected the water to splash at the precisely that height and there was no other way to focus the water droplet!):
The other day, I also happened to read at somebody's Flickr photograph that that was his best photo and he would have died to take that picture 6 months ago. He also said he isn't sure where to go next. I was thinking about what he wrote. After a discussion with Amar, the guy who inspired me into photography in the first place, I realized maybe, when one feels they are perfect in what they do (and attained a relative success), they may stop doing it completely.
Currently, I display interest in photography, because I have a zillion things to learn. One day, if I feel I have attained the stage where there is nothing left to learn, I may stop. Or I may redirect the interest to a whole new dimension. Or I may just continue to learn. I dont know. I see some very good photographers redirecting their interest towards writing a book or selling their photographs, making a good business model out of them. Others just continue to take pictures with unexplicable self-content. I guess it all depends on how one wants to realize happiness.
Not sure where my appetite for photography takes me to, but it makes me want to travel more. It makes me want to do things I wouldn't otherwise do. It makes me spend more money. It makes me spend more time. It keeps me busy. It makes me learn. And finally, it makes me happy. Very happy!
[P.S: My photographs: www.flickr.com/photos/arunsundar]