Monday, April 23, 2007

Black is the new Black- Yay!

So I went out and bought myself one of these MacBook things, in black. Not that I was wearing black when I bought it, but that the actual laptop is in black.

I've been a PC user all my computer using life. Macs have always been for creative types, educational types and trendies. I've never really fitted itno any of those categories. But, good design is something I'm a sucker for, spending silly amounts of money on things that are wholly unnecessary but still sexy is something I'm good at and this Mac stuff looks like it might just catch on.

For the last few weeks I have hanging around the new Apple Store in Kingston. It's a place that has done wonders to restore my faith in good customer service. We Brits (?) can do it if we really want to. Ok I know those Apple fellows aren't exactly British and but the shop is staffed mostly by Brits and they appear to do a fine job. I've been rapidly seduced by the great attitude of its staff, they've been friendly and knowledgeable and, on the rare occasions when someone hasn't known the answer to a question, they've found it out for me. These things matter to me and usually influence my buying decisions massively. I always prefer to pay a bit more for something if that means I'm buying from somewhere that gives good service. I'm definitely not one who asks questions in shops, finds out everything I need to know and then sails off and buys the thing over the internet.

Today I went back and finally bought this MacBook thing. It's the one I'm typing this on, as you can see. In just a few hours of play it has become almost my new favourite thing. I'm totally unfamiliar with Mac software so that's going to be a new learning curve to climb, one that I'm already enjoying. The keyboard is one of these sunken ones, no big keys poking out from the depths, just these little things that feel quite good to use. The display is bright and, as I've never had a laptop before, I'm being continually pleasantly surprised by the way in which I can tilt the screen to suit my chosen angle.

The entire contents of my iTunes library have been imported, this is something I am particularly pleased about, as iTunes and keeping my photographs to hand are the two things I'll use it most for. I use lots of different playlists for keeping sets and songs I play in the bands, as well as for the reasons normal people do. The next tactical move will be to import my photographs, then I'll be free to start playing around with things.

So far I've been amazed and delighted by the simplicity of its design and the ease in which I've been able to do things. There's no vast array of buttons everywhere, flashing lights and things poking out from every nook and cranny. I've still got to investigate all the function keys and many of its little touches but, as that Neville Timberland bloke would say " I'm lovin' it"

One of the best bits is that it's black. As I'm not an Apple purist I saw no need to insist on it being in white. Of course this means I'll have to buy a black iPod at some point too. But I don't feel as if I'm flaunting my Appleness too much.

And that has been what I've been up to, apart from all the other stuff which you just may know about already.

Now, does anyone know how to select multiple items from a list on a Mac? As if you were going to right click and scroll down on a PC, to select several consecutive lines.

Have a good week Colombo!


Anonymous said...

The right mouse button is set by default to bring up contextual menus.

To select multiple items you usually press "shift" while selecting items. If you want discontinuous multiple selections then press the apple-command button while clicking on desired items.

I suspect you could program the right button to be "shift" or "apple-command" but I've never tried that.

Anonymous said...

Selecting multiple items in a list: Method 1) In the Finder, drag down or up in the small margin to the left of the little icons. Method 2) Single click the first item to be selected in the list, then Shift Click the last item to be selected. Method 3) Command (Apple key) -Click list items to select them non-sequentially. I am not sure if this was what you were asking. Good Luck.

Anonymous said...

If I'm thinking what you're thinking hold down shift (and up/down arrows) to select consecutive lines up or down, hold command (apple-key) to select dis-consecutive selections.

Grant said...

To select multiple non-sequential items in a list, hold down the Command (open-apple) key. If you want to select multiple sequential items in a list, hold down shift between the first and last item of the list. In a window with icons only, holding shift will allow you to select multiple non-sequential items.

Have fun with your new MacBook!

Anonymous said...

Welcome to the Mac experience. There will be some differences but I am confident you will it more rewarding than Windows. To choose multiple items hold down the shift key as you chose the items, or with the shift key pressed click on the first and last items that you want from the list and all the others in between will be chosen as well.

Dominic Sansoni said...

Yes, I took the leap a month ago and just love it. All my work is on Photoshop (I write about 10 word documents a year...) and with images. The speed is amazing. Multiple select? I had a problem with that too. The answer is very simple, just drag your mouse over the files you want and that will highlight them.
Enjoy. And no, mine is not black, its silver.

Swiss said...

Congratulations! If you like things "black", then you might be interested in the absolutely indispensable free application "Quicksilver" from Blacktree. With a few simple keystrokes it will help you find anything and do everything with about anything.

Check for apps. Feel free to ask questions in Mac discussion forums such as those on

And make sure you backup everything (I use an app called "SuperDuper!" which will create an exact mirror image and a bootable back-up of your harddrive).


Swiss said...

To answer your question about selecting a number of items in a list on the Mac:

Also you may want to consider using the "help" menu item within an application, because on a Mac (as opposed to my experience on a PC) it is actually useful.

Anonymous said...

Hold the Command key "the one with the Apple" while you select ;)

Swiss said...

Sorry for a third comment, but I just came upon a post from an iMac user who switched 6 months ago. The post (and comments section) will give you a number of tips and may answer some questions you may already be asking yourself: