Moving In to the MacBook

I’ve been slowly moving in to my new 15″ MacBook Pro, which is slowly becoming my main system at home. It’s got decent video (average FPS in World of Warcraft is over 60, and that’s with options cranked up), good enough for the gaming I still do on the PC (most of it is on the Xbox 360), and beefier than my old desktop in most other ways.

I am having to make do with external storage for my music collection and photos (it would fit on the Mac but then I’d have no space left), so I’m leaving that stuff on the Windows Home Server. I still like the “just plug in more disks” model of expanding the storage available on Windows Home Server, though I lose out on the nice automated backup. Hopefully someday soon Time Machine and WHS will play nicely together, or maybe I’ll just end up with a Time Capsule.200803160954-1

The MagSafe power adapter has saved my bacon at least once already – my cat came tearing through where I was sitting on the couch working last night and ripped the power out of the laptop. The power connection is magnetic, designed to pull out without doing damage to the cable or computer, so no harm done. If it weren’t a MagSafe, something would have had to give.

iTunes is faster on the Mac than the PC – no surprise there.

One of the big “I can’t switch because” apps are the tax preparation apps. I’m doing my taxes on the PC this year – I’ll visit that next year, although I have VMWare Fusion on the Mac so if I need to install QuickTax I can do it. But hopefully next year we’ll have a Canadian version of this great Flex application for doing your taxes online. (Check it out if you haven’t seen it – it’s the best “online form” application I’ve seen).

Another must-have for me is OneNote. This is a relatively new Microsoft application, which they haven’t yet ported to the Mac. I kept a ton of information in OneNote on the PC, and I want that information available on the Mac.

There is no Mac tool that can read OneNote files yet, as far as I know, but I did find an interim solution so I don’t lose the information:

  1. Export your notebooks from OneNote as MHT (MIME HTML) files.
  2. Split those apart using File Juicer.

This gives you a folder with HTML files in it that contain the information from your OneNote files. A lot of the formatting is lost, but I wasn’t using OneNote for it’s formatting, just as basically a place to dump little pieces of text, so this is fine for me.

One bonus of having the information in folders a HTML files is that Spotlight indexes it. It’s actually easier to find the info in OneNote on the Mac, now, than it was on Vista, where search still seems to be a crapshoot.

I’m still looking for an app to replace OneNote.

There are a lot of sites with information for switchers so I won’t launch into a list of Mac apps I’m using. Here’s one that looks good.