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#247844 - 31/01/2005 14:59 Re: Apple [Re: _hardcore_]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
So, you might want to check with Apple today, since all the Powerbooks got speedbumped.
_________________________
Tom

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#247845 - 31/01/2005 15:29 Re: Apple [Re: drakino]
Jerz
addict

Registered: 13/07/2002
Posts: 634
Loc: Jesusland
They look nice but where are the memory card slots? Am I missing something?

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#247846 - 31/01/2005 15:44 Re: Apple [Re: drakino]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Polishing the credit card at the moment, getting ready to purchase. I've been waiting for these things since at october.

Do I need/want the 128mb vram? I don't play games, so it's entirely a planning for "when tiger comes out" decision. I have no plans to be driving a 30" LCD with it unfortunatly, so that argument doesn't hold water.

Matthew

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#247847 - 31/01/2005 15:56 Re: Apple [Re: matthew_k]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Memory card slots? As in slots for CF, SD, MMC, and other cards? Apple laptops don't include these, and I am glad actually. With changing memory standards, it is not likely a laptop with these slots will support everything after being a year old. The 15 and 17 inch models do have PCMCIA slots though, and card adaptors work fine in there. And all models have USB2, and work fine with the standard USB card readers. I have a very tiny one for my memory stick duo media that my camera takes, it just sits in a pocket in my laptop bag for the rare times it is used.

If you are asking where the memory DIMMs are, all powerbooks have memory access via a screwed down panel on the bottom of the case.

Regarding the 128 VRam, do you intend to have a second monitor attached frequently? If so, that dedicates half the ram to one screen and the other half to the second screen. Expose can get noticibly choppy with several windows open and only 32mb per display.

For now, that is about the only advantage if you have no plans on gaming on it. Core Image in Tiger seems to be used by Dashboard and such, so it is more eye candy pulling on the GPU. Likely though, 64mb will be plenty even for the dashboard effects on a single screen. Dual screen, and it could become choppy again.
_________________________
Tom

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#247848 - 31/01/2005 16:36 Re: Apple [Re: drakino]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
I'd go for the extra 128MB VRAM before I would go for the extra processor speed from 1.5 to 1.67GHz.

BTW, Mac OS X's VRAM is allocated such that you don't make a hard split when multiple displays are active. If you need more memory on one and not on the other, that's fine. Only the memory allocated for the viewable display itself is allocated at all times. And at least a couple of backbuffers I suppose. But, 128MB is definitely preferrable to 64MB, especially when using shader programs, large textures, a lot of z buffers, etc. When 3D becomes trivial to use in Tiger you'll be seeing the graphics subsystem stressed a lot more often by many more applications besides games.

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247849 - 31/01/2005 17:32 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Ahh, good to know about the memory split. I was thinking it was even, as system profile always shows 32 on the CRT and 32 on the laptop LCD, even when kicking in something like World of Warcraft on one screen.
_________________________
Tom

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#247850 - 31/01/2005 20:09 Re: Apple [Re: drakino]
_hardcore_
member

Registered: 22/09/2000
Posts: 195
Loc: Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
So, you might want to check with Apple today, since all the Powerbooks got speedbumped.


Grhh... I just noticed that - guess what DHL is delivering to me early tomorrow? I can't really wheter or not i feel cheated :-)

\\Kaare

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#247851 - 31/01/2005 22:26 Re: Apple [Re: _hardcore_]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Where did you order it from that they shipped it out that quick? You're sure it's not an updated one, they're supposed to be shipping this week.

Matthew

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#247852 - 01/02/2005 05:49 Re: Apple [Re: matthew_k]
_hardcore_
member

Registered: 22/09/2000
Posts: 195
Loc: Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
Where did you order it from that they shipped it out that quick? You're sure it's not an updated one, they're supposed to be shipping this week.

Matthew


I'm more or less certain that it's not one of the new ones. I didn't order it directly from the apple store, as they had no in stock - instead i found a local apple pusher with around 30-40 in stock of the model i wanted. The only thing that i know i will be missing if it's one of the old ones is the trackpad scroll feature - the rest of the new "features" are more or less upgradeable. I did order it with the large gfx card - i do have a 100gb 5400rpm hdd sitting here at the table, just waiting to beinstalled. Was supposed to install it in my t40, as i've run out of space.. And i did get it with 1gb of extra ram.

Enhanced illuminated keyboard? - hmm, think i can live without it. And i bet that my use of word wouldn't put strain on the 1.5ghz cpu :-)

See, still trying to convince myself..

\\Kaare

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#247853 - 01/02/2005 07:28 Re: Apple [Re: _hardcore_]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3824
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
You won't miss the trackpad upgrade if you use SideTrack as i'd mentioned above. . . well, with the exception of being able to scroll around a page willy nilly as it appears you can do. Your locked to one axis at a time. The faster and + compatible burner is all i'd miss.
_________________________
|| loren ||

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#247854 - 01/02/2005 07:31 Re: Apple [Re: loren]
drakino
carpal tunnel

Registered: 08/06/1999
Posts: 7868
Loc: Seattle, WA
Quote:
+ compatible burner is all i'd miss.


You have a + compatible burner now according to this.
_________________________
Tom

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#247855 - 01/02/2005 08:38 Re: Apple [Re: drakino]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3824
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Ah, so it was a software thing. Hm. It's the faster I really care about. + compatibility ain't no thang =]
_________________________
|| loren ||

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#247856 - 01/02/2005 20:53 Re: Apple [Re: loren]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
It'll be interesting to see if the double-finger trackpad scrolling has anything at all to do with new hardware or if it's strictly software. If it's software, then we may see it in the next version of that cool trackpad driver replacement you mentioned above. Still need to install it.

The illuminated keyboard is included on all 15 and 17" Powerbooks going back 2 iterations. Very useful when the room is dark. Very annoying when it's not (makes it harder to read the keys if there's light in the room)

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247857 - 01/02/2005 21:06 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
wfaulk
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/12/2000
Posts: 16706
Loc: Raleigh, NC US
I thought it was supposed to determine the amount of ambient light and brighten and dim accordingly. Or is that only the display?
_________________________
Bitt Faulk

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#247858 - 01/02/2005 21:29 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Just to pick a nit, the backlit keyboard was optional on the 15 up until now... I beleive the ambient light sensor is supposed to turn on the keyboard backlight and control the screen brightness, but I've never used it.

Matthew

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#247859 - 01/02/2005 22:41 Re: Apple [Re: matthew_k]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
I'm pretty sure it was only an option on the 1.33GHZ model. The 1.5GHz I had didn't have an option to drop the backlit keyboard. The main point is that it's not something new. It's been around a long time. Infact, Apple dropped that feature in development at one point and then added it back. Had me thinking it wouldn't make it into this revision. I didn't know ahbout the other tweaks until now (because I hadn't used the protos much) - BT 2.0, double-finger track pad scrolling & motion sensor.

The keyboard lighting does come on wih the ambient light sensor. But it can get triggered just by shadow when the room is otherwise bright enough to clearly see the keybooard. The letters are visible because of contrast. Dark letters on lighter silver keys or bright letters on dark keys. When the light in the keys is just bright enough to make the letters blend into the silver keys, it's virtually impossible to make them out. Very annoying. You can alter the brightness of the keys - or turn them off - as long as they've been activated by the sensor. Cover both speaker grills with your hands and you can see them light up.

The newest Powerbooks are definitely constructed better than the previous ones as well. The latching mechanisms on the top cover are much better than the previous (which can be easily damaged when putting the machine back together after internal upgrades).

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247860 - 02/02/2005 07:06 Re: Apple [Re: loren]
_hardcore_
member

Registered: 22/09/2000
Posts: 195
Loc: Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
You won't miss the trackpad upgrade if you use SideTrack as i'd mentioned above. . . well, with the exception of being able to scroll around a page willy nilly as it appears you can do. Your locked to one axis at a time. The faster and + compatible burner is all i'd miss.


Nice, mised your point with sidetrack. All i need is the ability to scroll downwards in a document. Scrolling in all directions is really no issue. At the same time, i have to mention that on my current t40 the scroll'ing feature is hardly useable, so i've lived without the feature for nearly two years.

\\Kaare

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#247861 - 02/02/2005 07:08 Re: Apple [Re: matthew_k]
_hardcore_
member

Registered: 22/09/2000
Posts: 195
Loc: Copenhagen, Denmark
Quote:
Just to pick a nit, the backlit keyboard was optional on the 15 up until now... I beleive the ambient light sensor is supposed to turn on the keyboard backlight and control the screen brightness, but I've never used it.

Matthew


I was only an option on the entry level powerbooks, ie. the 1.3ghz - on the 1.5ghz model is was mandantory.

\\Kaare

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#247862 - 02/02/2005 14:11 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
wfaulk
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/12/2000
Posts: 16706
Loc: Raleigh, NC US
Quote:
it's virtually impossible to make [the keycaps] out. Very annoying.

It also occurs to me that maybe you should learn to touch-type.
_________________________
Bitt Faulk

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#247863 - 02/02/2005 15:03 Re: Apple [Re: wfaulk]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
I don't generally have to look at the keyboard to type, but I still find it distracting to have an otherwise blank slate under my hands. I've never been really good with the small impresions on the F and J to figure out orientation - and the flat keyboard just makes it harder to feel where the keys line up.

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247864 - 02/02/2005 15:05 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
matthew_k
pooh-bah

Registered: 12/02/2002
Posts: 2296
Loc: Berkeley, California
Quote:
I've never been really good with the small impresions on the F and J to figure out orientation

So they aren't putting them on the d and k keys these days in cupertino? That's great news, as the nipples being in the wrong place used to frusterate me every time I sat down at a mac.

Matthew

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#247865 - 02/02/2005 23:34 Re: Apple [Re: matthew_k]
loren
carpal tunnel

Registered: 23/08/2000
Posts: 3824
Loc: SLC, UT, USA
Nope... F and J where they should be. That used to drive me nuts too. Hm.... I wonder when they made the switch... i didn't notice.
_________________________
|| loren ||

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#247866 - 02/02/2005 23:48 Re: Apple [Re: loren]
Dylan
addict

Registered: 23/09/2000
Posts: 498
Loc: Virginia, USA
Quote:
Everything you listed has a Mac counterpart that is file compatible.


Is there free software that will work with Word and Excel documents or do I have to buy MS Office? It doesn't need to have all features of MS (in fact, I'd rather it didn't) but I would like more than bare bones word processing and spreadsheet functionality (better then WordPad).


Edited by Dylan (02/02/2005 23:52)

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#247867 - 03/02/2005 07:41 Re: Apple [Re: Dylan]
julf
veteran

Registered: 01/10/2001
Posts: 1295
Loc: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Quote:
Is there free software that will work with Word and Excel documents or do I have to buy MS Office? It doesn't need to have all features of MS (in fact, I'd rather it didn't) but I would like more than bare bones word processing and spreadsheet functionality (better then WordPad).

OpenOffice.org. I use it on Linux, Mac and Win XP. On the Mac, it's not very well integrated with the rest of the environment (it uses it's own UI/style under X11), but it does everything MS Office does...

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#247868 - 03/02/2005 09:28 Re: Apple [Re: julf]
David
addict

Registered: 05/05/2000
Posts: 623
Loc: Cambridge
NeoOffice might be worth a look. It is basically OpenOffice with a Java layer to provide a Mac interface. I've not used it myself, but I've heard good things about it.

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#247869 - 03/02/2005 12:48 Re: Apple [Re: julf]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
Excel is limited to 65K rows, OpenOffice, last I checked was limited to 32K. That's not doing everything Office does. Plus its word processor looks bad. Really really bad.

Apple has their own word processor out now as part of iWork. Too bad they don't have a spreadsheet with decent row support (65K is still pathetic). It's not free, but it also doesn't break the bank. Plus, you don't get stuck using (bad) "free" software. There are other costs beyond sticker price.

There are also free or low cost reader applications to work with Word files (I don't know about Excel..)

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247870 - 03/02/2005 12:56 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
julf
veteran

Registered: 01/10/2001
Posts: 1295
Loc: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Quote:
Excel is limited to 65K rows, OpenOffice, last I checked was limited to 32K.


Ahh. Hadn't realized that. Don't do spreadsheets with > 32K rows that often. And I would argue that if you have more than 1000 rows, you are using a spreadsheet for something it was not intended for - and then 64K is almost as bad as 32K.

Quote:
Plus its word processor looks bad. Really really bad.

True. But not quite as bad as MS Word.
Quote:
There are other costs beyond sticker price.

Absolutely. The thing that is priceless to me is portability across platforms (as someone who uses Windows, Mac, Linux and BSD on a daily basis).


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#247871 - 03/02/2005 13:33 Re: Apple [Re: julf]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
A spreadsheet is a great tool for data mining and manipulation before such data is ready for a database and/or before such a database and associated browsing tools are completed.

I'm all ears if someone has something else to suggest that I can pick up and use immediately to batch correct fields within a very large file (CSV source with up to 20 columns or so). A lot of the correcitons I'm making require visually seeing the data in a grid-like presentation to identify inconsistencies visually.

Whether most people will require greater than 65K isn't the most important detail. The program could be engineered to support it and it isn't. It's the same thing as MS telling someone they won't need more than "X" amount of memory on their computer.

Word and Excel for Mac OS X look quite decent. Apple's new "Pages" program looks very nice and seems to overlap into Page Layout (ala PageMaker, InDesign, etc..) while still presenting a very clean interface (which may or may not be easy to use - I'll have to see).

Now if only someone would make a very fast text editor that does proper macro recording and playback. The more I use TextWrangler (free editor from the BBEdit guys, nearly identical), the more underwhelmed I am. TextPad for Windows is the king.

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247872 - 03/02/2005 13:39 Re: Apple [Re: loren]
hybrid8
carpal tunnel

Registered: 12/11/2001
Posts: 7738
Loc: Toronto, CANADA
I installed Sidetrack last night. So far really liking it. Need to use it for a longer period of time to get used to the corner clicks I've set up.

Also finally installed "Path Finder" - an alternate file manager which can be run in place of the standard Finder. A bunch more setup/config options and a lot of extra shell-like functionality thrown in. My main reason for seeking this out was to get proper file sorting into browser views: Folder at the top, and not intermixed with files in the standard back-asswards Mac way (I've been hating that about Mac OS for over 10 years).

Bruno
_________________________
Bruno
Twisted Melon : Fine Mac OS Software

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#247873 - 03/02/2005 13:40 Re: Apple [Re: hybrid8]
wfaulk
carpal tunnel

Registered: 25/12/2000
Posts: 16706
Loc: Raleigh, NC US
vi continues to be the king of text editors, IMO. There's a GUI port of vim for MacOS X.

I'd say that the proper tool for massive amounts of data before you're ready to put it in a database is a database. You can create and drop tables pretty easily, and GUI "raw"-ish interfaces are plentiful.
_________________________
Bitt Faulk

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