Archive for the ‘MacBook’ Category

My three complaints with the Macbook Aluminium

January 25, 2009
The cat appreciated the Macbook just as much as I did.

The cat appreciated the Macbook just as much as I did.

One of the Macbook Aluminium’s strong points is its cat compatability, as evidenced from the image above. And overall it is a fantastic laptop. In fact, it is easier to point out its flaws than its strong points.

I’ve had my Mac for about three months now, and these are my complaints:

  • The laptop easily slides around when placed on a smooth surface, such as a table. The rubber “knobs” on the bottom – which elevate the laptop from the surface it’s standing on and are meant to keep it steady – do not provide enough friction.When opened, the forward edge of the main chassis, where you will rest your palms when typing, is pretty sharp. Enough to be somewhat annoying to me, depending on what position I’m sitting in.
  • There are only two USB ports, and it seems only one of them is fully functional when running Windows – my external USB 2,5″ drive won’t spin when plugged into the other. Given the real estate on the left side of the laptop, Apple should have been to put in one more USB port and made all of them 100% functional.
  • And it does have its rough edges in Windows – the trackpad is a bit finicky – the drivers need some tweaking, and there is no right click-button on the keyboard.

You probably realise, given that these are my main objections to the Macbook Alu design, that I am pretty happy with it. In fact, I consider it the best computer I’ve ever owned.

Great keyboard, nice screen, splendid design (and quite robust), huge trackpad, decent graphics card and powerful specs, backlit keyboard, decent battery life. And you can run both Windows XP and OS X on it.

I use mostly Windows XP – it is faster, I can play games and it is less dependant on a pointing device (I am a keyboard enthusiast). However, it is nice to have OS X as a virus-proof backup, and I use Garageband and iMovie from time to time.

Macbook Aluminium makes funny clicking sound while apparently not charging

November 8, 2008

The title really says it all. My Macbook Alu had run out of battery and died; when I plugged it in, the light on the power plug did not ignite, and I thought nothing was happening until I noticed a steady low ticking sound emanting from the top left of the keyboard. I tried to google it, but didn’t find anything interesting (I have to admit I didn’t spend too much time researching, as it was via Opera Mini on my N82….).

After listening to the steady ticking for a few minutes, I unplugged and reconnected the power plug, which promptly lit up like it usually does, and I’m typing this on my Macbook. Funny.

I wonder if perhaps the ticking is the Macbook’s way of saying it is doing some low-level charging of the battery?

Weird OS X crash – everything freezes, music from iTunes keeps playing

March 14, 2007
Photo 86


OS X crashed on me again. This has happened before, and I think the manner of the crash is weird enough to warrant a blog post. This is what happens.

1) I’m working on something, usually my thesis, using NeoOffice, Word, remote desktop, Firefox, Opera, tons of stuff.

2) Suddenly OS X freezes – meaning that my keyboard input doesn’t register, and although I can move the mouse cursor around, nothing happens when I click.

3) The music continues. If I am playing an MP3 in iTunes, it keeps playing, like nothing has happened. No stuttering, nothing.

4) I can close the lid on the Macbook, and it will eventually go to sleep. When I wake it up, I don’t get the logon screen, but am sent directly into the desktop again and the music resumes.

5) Eventually my patience runs out, and I do a hard shutdown on the Macbook using the power button.

In a word: Weird. As previously, nothing special in the logs. I’ll google this later, for now I have to do some work.

When That Which Is Not Supposed To Happen happens anyway

March 1, 2007

Rrrrright, you guessed it – total system freeze in OS X. I can move the cursor around, but that’s it. The only remedy was doing a hard shutdown with the power button.

I would have been less annoyed by this if I was doing something unusual, like running an application I’m not normally running, or trying out new hardware, or really REALLY pushing the system, but I was just doing nothing in particular. And I would also be less annoyed if /var/log/system.log had any information at all about what happened.

Maybe RAM issues, or some other hardward problem? I’ll have to check. In any event – in addition to all the reasons stated above, I am doubly annoyed because I’m on OS X, which isn’t supposed to crash. Pfffft.

The Apple MacBook, three months on

October 8, 2006

After using my black 2,0 Ghz MacBook for three months, I thought I should write up a short review with the main positive and negative points this laptop has to offer.

I will contrast my MacBook experiences with those Margrethe has had with her Dell Inspiron 6400, which has similar specifications at a lower cost. The Dell is a much larger machine (15,4″ vs 13,3″ screen and a lot thicker) but I still believe it is a useful comparison. Most of my thoughts here would apply to the cheaper MacBook models, too.