[OS X TeX] Who should use (La)TeX - who is able to use it?

Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com
Mon Nov 15 17:32:34 EST 2004

Le 15 nov. 04, à 22:44, Gerben Wierda a écrit :

> This is indeed a generic point. I noticed too that Mac users were very 
> negative about the change to Mac OS X.

I noticed the same, long-term Mac users refusing for as long as 
possible to migrate from OS 9 to OS X. But I've the impression things 
are now evolving, with a new "generation" of users coming, having 
discovered the Mac with OS X, and with former switchers from Windows or 
Mac OS to Linux getting tired of compatibility issues and realizing OS 
X offers Unix with polish and ease of use on top. I've just managed to 
make a convert of the second sort, he's ordered his PowerBook 15" today 

I would say what I'm seeing now at work can be grossly classified as:

- People in their fifties and sixties: don't feel as much pressure as 
they used to, have enough funding to buy what they like, favour ease of 
use and comfort, can afford to spend a bit of time learning a new OS. 
For some of them that means a Mac with OS X.

- People in their thirties or fourties: lots of stress, fights to get 
funding, shortage of time, which generally implies Windows for maximum 
interoperability, no learning curve (everybody has had to use Windows 
at school) and cheap hardware, or Linux for philosophical reasons and 
cheap hardware. Not many Mac users among these people, except a few of 
us resisting.

- People in their twenties: generally hate MS and love Linux, for 
philosophical reasons. Speak openly about Macs, are quite excited about 
it and would love to get one should they get money for it. See Mac 
positively, as Unix with polish and ease of use on top, see 
Terminal.app as a way to have fun (= the possibility to hack the core 
OS) rather than stress, have all played with Fink and use it 
extensively. None of them have the 80s pictures of the Mac as a toy, 
not to be considered seriously. Possibly the iPod effect, the fact that 
Macs are now a part of lifestyle, something you're proud of and no 
longer ashamed of.

It's an all subjective picture, of course.

Bruno Voisin

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