[internetworkers] Mac Integration Comes With a Hidden Cost??!?!?

Tom Boucher trekkie at nomorestars.com
Tue Dec 28 13:42:30 EST 2004


> The one piece missing from the conversation on how wonderful
> the MAC OS is is the cost of integration. I know mac has
> come along way with enabling apps like MS office, email
> applications, so on but I can't help but to wonder what kind
> (Whoops didn't think about that!) would spring up at the most
> in-opportune moments. Not to mention purchasing all the
> new software. If most are clients, contractors, suppliers are
> on windows, I have a sneaky suspicion that integration would
> come with a hidden cost called incompatibility surprise.
>

Speaking as someone who has used applications on a non-Windows operating
system in a Windows world I did not experience any of the 'cost of
integration' issues that seem to be thrown out a lot.

In the mid 90s I worked for Pizza Hut at it's former corporate
headquarters in Wichita, KS.  Until Pepsico forced them, they were an
entire Macintosh corporation.  Servers, systems, desktops, and laptops.

The rest of the world wasn't.

It took two of us to support 1400 desktops.  Our worst days were the days
when a new version of that stupid screen saver whos name escapes me at the
moment.  Flying toasters... anyway they came out with a rev that had a
little dog that would run around and tear up your desktop and stuff and a
lot of the admins wanted it pretty badly.  They had a software
distribution set up but you know how it is with admin assitants and you
really want to take care of them so they'll help you out when you need it.

Then, Pizza Hut's corporate presense got moved to Dallas, TX and they
created some kind of services deal called Tricon (that later then moved to
Louisville, KY) and forced the entire 1400 desktop/laptops to Windows.

They had to hire 18 more people to manage the same user base, and all 18
people had ticket loads 10 - 20 deep, systems had to be reloaded daily to
trouble shoot.  Ah, the wonders of Windows 95.

The cost of integration when systems are connected via internet style
networks has really driven out the 'cost of integration' any more.  Email
systems whether they be Lotus Notes, Microsoft Exchange, Sendmail, qmail,
whatever all adhere to the same standards and can send data the same way. 
The fact that my email is leaving a Windows Internet Explorer on a web
page hosted by a Apple Xserve running Mac OS X sent through your ISPs
system to you and yet it looks the same.

Same goes for MS Office files.

Same goes for JPGs, GIFs, whatnot.

Same for PDFs...

At home I'm sure I don't use as much but my entire family is still windows
based and they send me stuff all the time and vise versa.  They know no
difference.

I'm sure there would be more esoteric things like vertical applications
for some industries that might have a few challenges, etc, but in general
there is no cost of change that would compare to the cost of supporting
the virus and spyware laden Windows world.

Happy Chrismahanukwanzaka to you.



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