Dear God

Dear God,

Mea culpa: because one of the Garage portfolio companies, FilmLoop, wrote a Windows version of its product before a Macintosh version, I’ve had to use a Windows laptop for demos. It is one of those tiny Sony Vaios—I don’t even know the model number because I didn’t bond with it.

This is the first time I used Windows for more than fifteen minutes at a time, and the experience has made me a better Macintosh evangelist. I simply cannot comprehend how people put up with Windows—but ragging on Windows isn’t the topic of this blog.

I must admit that the Tiny Vaio did remove the scales from my eyes about what a Tiny Laptop can do. (I owned at 12 inch PowerBook, so I thought I knew. Silly me.) Here’s what I liked about the Tiny Vaio:

  • It weighs nothing. I have cell phone adapters that weigh more.
  • Its battery lasts forever. Five hours is not unusual. It should come with the same FDA warning as Viagra: If you have an erection that lasts more than four hours, seek medical attention.
  • A drop-dead beautiful screen.
  • A PCMCIA slot.
  • A CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive.
  • It doesn’t require a special dongle to drive a monitor or projector.

We’re about a week from Macworld Expo, and I am not privy to any confidential information because I’m a has-been in the Apple world. (For example, like any schmo, I stand in line at the Apple store and pay full retail.) But, dear God, here is my dream PowerBook:

  • Real-world battery life of five hours where real-world is defined as sitting on an airplane answering email as fast as you can.
  • Run Windows XP. Running simultaneously with the Macintosh OS would be sweet, but I’m not greedy; I’ll reboot if I have to lower myself. However, God, if you want Apple to ever penetrate big companies, this would sure help.
  • 150 gigabyte internal drive. Thanks to Aperture, I’ll be shooting RAW images, so don’t blame me for my larger storage needs.
  • Tiny where tiny = under three pounds. The Tiny Vaio is just about the right size and weight for a road/presentation warrior—not everyone has their own Gulfstream.
  • PCMCIA slot. This slot is very useful for card readers to upload digital photos and for EVDO cards. The Tiny Vaio has it, so should my next PowerBook.
  • Super duper drive. The Tiny Vaio has it, so should my next PowerBook.
  • Two USB ports: one for a mouse and one for a thumb drive because both are needed at the same time.
  • Firewire port so I can back up rapidly.
  • Bluetooth so I can synch my Nokia phone. Too bad Nokia doesn’t believe Macintosh users synch up their phones, but that’s a minor detail.
  • Ethernet and built-in 802.11 for obvious reasons.
  • Use the same power adapter as the current PowerBooks. Some sadist at Apple changes the adapter every few models—this means that people like me have to buy two new adapters: one for the office and one for the briefcase. Three if you count the one I will lose. Changing is fine if the new adapter works twice as fast or something like that, but otherwise, slide “the rest of us” a break.
  • No requirement for a monitor/projector dongle. The aforementioned Apple sadist also forces me to buy four dongles: one for home, one for the office, two for my briefcase (because I must carry an extra one when I make presentations, and you never know when you’ll lose one like the time a speaker at the Craig’s List NFP bootcamp swiped mine). Make it five if you count the one I will lose.

I’ve been good this whole year, so God, how about it? The Christmas rush is over.

Written at Ilikai Hotel, Honolulu, Hawaii

By | 2016-10-24T14:29:40+00:00 January 5th, 2006|Categories: Cool Stuff|33 Comments

About the Author:

Guy Kawasaki is the chief evangelist of Canva, an online graphic design tool. Formerly, he was an advisor to the Motorola business unit of Google and chief evangelist of Apple. He is also the author of The Art of Social Media, The Art of the Start, APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur, Enchantment, and nine other books. Kawasaki has a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA as well as an honorary doctorate from Babson College.

33 Comments

  1. Mathieu Nouzareth January 5, 2006 at 1:33 am - Reply

    But why do you need a CD/DVD drive by the way ?
    I whish my laptop comes with no CD drive. I realized I use it once or twice a year, just to install some software that don’t come come by download (usually Mac OSX updates).
    I never watch DVD, all the movies I have are downloaded from the net. I never listen to CDs anymore (all Itunes/Ipod). I use USB keys if I need to transfer big file with no network.
    I whish the next Powerbook will have no CD drive so that it can be smaller and weighs less…

  2. Peter Quodling January 5, 2006 at 3:04 am - Reply

    It’s a culture shock isn’t it. We have been a PC household (since about G3-G4 transition time) bu my son needs a Ibook for the video stuff he is doing at College. Must say, that it took 5 minutes to get the Ibook, up and running, it automatically prompted for software updates, and the Tiger UI is much sweeter.
    But, if you are looking for sexy PC’s apart from the Vaio’s, then check out Fujitsu Lifebooks, or for top of the line intel “alienware”.
    q

  3. Paulo Maia January 5, 2006 at 3:33 am - Reply

    Well, I still need a windows computer because my homebank does not run in any other system. I’m expecting the macintels will boot both systems and I will be able to save space in my table and let the PC go.

  4. Matt Johnston January 5, 2006 at 4:56 am - Reply

    Apart from the real world limitations (hard drives only come in 120 GB versions) and the video out thing (do we want to use plain old analog VGA?), I agree with everything you say. Combo drives though are so plebian. Dual layer superdrives should be standard.
    What size was the screen on that baby?

  5. jarkko January 5, 2006 at 5:09 am - Reply

    “Bluetooth so I can synch my Nokia phone. Too bad Nokia doesn’t believe Macintosh users synch up their phones, but that’s a minor detail.”
    Syncing a Nokia 6630 with iSync has worked flawlessly since 10.4. It’s a one-click process and includes both calendar and address book.

  6. Mike Johnston January 5, 2006 at 5:28 am - Reply

    Other than losing things I believe the new powerbook’s accomplish most of that “dream list”. I would think that once Apple releases the Intel based models this year; you may get your dual-boot OS wish and the rest of the world will finally understand the power of Apple.
    Awesome presentation yesterday. Need any help in Hawaii?

  7. Mike Johnston January 5, 2006 at 5:29 am - Reply

    Other than losing things I believe the new powerbook’s accomplish most of that “dream list”. I would think that once Apple releases the Intel based models this year; you may get your dual-boot OS wish and the rest of the world will finally understand the power of Apple.
    Awesome presentation yesterday. Need any help in Hawaii?

  8. Samir January 5, 2006 at 5:41 am - Reply

    Is it a letter to Steve Jobs ? 🙂

  9. Jon Åslund January 5, 2006 at 6:27 am - Reply

    I actually think Apple will present some virtualization with the intel cpus with the new models, so that you actually can run Windows XP at the same time as MacOS X.
    Like VMware, but with better support from the hardware. But if Apple does not, you can bet VMware will. 🙂
    There should be no need for reboot.

  10. Moises Kirsch January 5, 2006 at 7:08 am - Reply

    Amen!!!
    I love my 12 inche PowerBook but something lighter might be of good use from time to time.
    But it will also mean that I’ll need an iMac.

  11. Scott Hampton January 5, 2006 at 7:12 am - Reply

    My old powerbook, 3 years now, does most of that, but does require the dongle. I don’t mind that, I’d rather have the digital for the big screen as default. With the VM I can drop to XP when I need to open client MS Project files (uggh). I’m just stretching the life a few more months for the new hardware.

  12. Mark Dalrymple January 5, 2006 at 7:26 am - Reply

    I’d gladly sacrifice my CD/DVD drive for another battery, like with the G3 powerbooks.

  13. Brant Sears January 5, 2006 at 8:26 am - Reply

    I disagree with you about the power adapter. Yes, sticking with one would be nice, but please design a more sturdy power adapter for the iBook. Think of the children! Or better yet, think of the children’s father who has to buy a new adapter every time the child breaks the adapter. My 10 year old has broken about 5 power adapters on her iBook and on my PowerBook. I thought the iBook was supposed to be for school children.
    The previous adapter (the yo-yo one) was better in this regard. I had two and my wife has only managed to break one of them.

  14. Brad Hutchings January 5, 2006 at 10:32 am - Reply

    Point of fact… It’s Cialis that “warns” against the dangers of 4 hour erections, not Viagra.

  15. Don Shade January 5, 2006 at 10:34 am - Reply

    I love my 15-in G4 Powerbook as is. A 3.2 GHz processor and dual boot XP would be nice. Please don’t make me install Norton Internet Security, however.

  16. Jean-Marc Ouvre January 5, 2006 at 12:18 pm - Reply

    We just want to have the result of a mix of a PowerBook with the size and the battery of a Sony subnotebook and keep the noise level of a powerbook and get an integrated isight “a la vaio”.

  17. Uli Kusterer January 5, 2006 at 12:42 pm - Reply

    Or, to summarise it in another way: He wants the big Powerbook with the weight and form-factor of what I’d guess could be the next-gen 12″ PowerBook (the current one is 1.6 pounds too heavy). Well, plus 30GB more hard disk and minus the dongle.
    The power supply hasn’t changed since the Clamshell iBook, so I wouldn’t really complain about that as “every few models”. Though they *could* make it run less hot without…

  18. Tim Scollick January 5, 2006 at 2:05 pm - Reply

    FYI: Windows users feel the same way that you do when they go to use a Macintosh. Although MacOS is beautiful and full featured OS, it’s a frustrating experience for a seasoned windows user.

  19. duffy brook January 5, 2006 at 3:27 pm - Reply

    Amen brother Guy. Gimme that dual-boot SlimBook and watch me walk on water.

  20. Graham Parks January 5, 2006 at 7:48 pm - Reply

    I think you’re mis-remembering the PowerBook situation. All Apple laptops since the Titanium PowerBook (Jan 2001) and White iBook (May 2001) have interchangeable power adapters. Newer, larger PowerBooks only work well with the more powerful 65W adapter, but apart from that, Apple hasn’t forced you to buy a new adapter in the last 5 years.

  21. olivier blanchard January 5, 2006 at 8:03 pm - Reply

    Can I suggest easy pop-on/pop-off shells/skins for mine? (Most days, white’s cool, but I might be in the mood for brushed steel or tangerine in a month or two. Carbon-fiber with a high-gloss finish would make the guys at the bike shop green with envy.)
    What does a guy have to do to customize his laptop around here anyway?

  22. Travis Butler January 6, 2006 at 3:35 pm - Reply

    I admit lusting after sub-sub-notebooks myself (love the idea of the OQO!) However, I have to ask: Apple’s tried the mini-books three times that I can think of (not counting the eMate). You can argue that the first two had crippling flaws: the PB 100 was old technology compared to the 14x/170, the Duo’s Bat-a-Dock utility belt syndrome was severely limiting. But the 2400c was a well-reviewed machine, didn’t have any crippling flaws that I can remember, and in fact I can’t remember any worse comment about it than ‘keyboard’s too small’. And it still flopped.
    What’s changed since then that would make a new Apple microBook any more successful? Are palmtops doing any better than they were before? (At least in my area, they don’t exactly seem to be flying off the shelves.) Or could Apple manage to make a niche machine successfully? (i.e. one that could be profitable on limited sales, and wouldn’t cost too much to develop?)

  23. vineet January 7, 2006 at 4:04 pm - Reply

    The Sony VIAO is probably the VGN-TX670P. I’ve been using one for a couple months as my second computer (complements a 17-inch PowerBook). It lacks a built-in and underlit keyboard but nails just about every other feature. Too bad Apple doesn’t sell something w/ a similar feature set and size.

  24. vineet January 7, 2006 at 4:07 pm - Reply

    sorry … as per prior comment … lacks a built-in microphone … (should you skype).

  25. Audiolathe January 8, 2006 at 7:59 am - Reply

    See that’s the trick – The old G3 Pismo had usb, firewire, pcmcia card slot and airport card (if you added it) and nifty swappable cd-rom bay which could house another battery oh and video out. So why not update that configuration, add bluetooth and a serious hard drive and we’d all be singing.
    Getting bored of waiting I invested in a G5 Imac, which is luggable using a specia ilugger bag (not the lightest thing on the planet but at least it has plenty of ooommph compared to the laptops out there). Mind you – though work I have to have a PC laptop and the truth is that when you need something with top performance (mine’s gotta be able to do 3d modelling and rendering) they all weigh a ton! So therefore I propose there to be a weight limit for computers to be called laptops… anything above 1.5Kg should be called a lugtop.

  26. God January 9, 2006 at 2:51 am - Reply

    Ok

  27. Hiten Shah January 9, 2006 at 1:31 pm - Reply

    I know it’s not a Apple, but you should check out the dell 700M, it is a wonderful little machine. Everyone in my family has one.
    http://www1.us.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/entnb_700m?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs
    Coupons can be found at:
    http://www.ableshoppers.com
    or http://www.slickdeals.net

  28. Raymond Hermans January 11, 2006 at 1:37 am - Reply

    Having switched from (how foolish of me) Apple to Windows 12 years ago, I emptied my wallet and shortned my life by I guess several years. When my last Windows machine went belly up I stood up and yelled ENOUGH IS ENOUGH ! took my car and drove to the nearest Apple shop.
    Got myself a nice little iBook and… got back into the feeling of 12 years ago… peace and tranquility 🙂
    The only thing I wonder about is why so many people still buy the “big” machines… I used to do this on Windows ( I needed to do it if I wanted to get anything done in time… with boot-up time and so on ) but with the iBook theres no real need for me anymore…
    Anyway… Guy keep on rolling… it is good to read your toughts again after so many years!

  29. Marcelo Lopez January 11, 2006 at 10:24 am - Reply

    In response to Duffy Brook, of “FYI: Windows users feel the same way that you do when they go to use a Macintosh. Although MacOS is beautiful and full featured OS, it’s a frustrating experience for a seasoned windows user.” fame…
    You’ve got to be kidding me, right ? Look, I was Mac when Mac wasn’t cool…1985. I sold PC’s and Mac’s to get through college. Finished college, sold my 512K FatMac ( Where are you today dear one? ) to pay off some college debt, and subsequently bought a PC and starting doing “real” programming on DOS, Windows 2.x, and this newfangled thing that looked like Windows, but smelled of IBM, called OS/2. After years of that and going back to Win32 ( re: what should’ve been OS/2 3.0, for those out there who know the real history of the IBM/M$ brouhaha ), I finally decided I’m going back to Macs. Nevermind that was after I’d bought my father ( who had been the one to “urge” me to sell my Mac in the first place ) a PowerMac G4, as a retirement present, because they used them at the printing company where he worked, and I was tired of having him keep telling me “It just works !” a half a million times. Nevermind that in the back of my head, that phrase just kept repeating itself back to me. Finally in 2005, I gave in to the urge, May, to be exact. What should happen a scant 4 weeks later ? StevieJ changes gears on me, oh well.
    Now having both a rather powerful DELL to do “real work” for which I get paid my wages, and a PB 17″ to use, which do you think really makes me think of doom and gloom when I use it. You guessed it boys and girls, the DELL. Both of those laptops have 100Gb drives. Both have 1.5Gb of RAM. Both have widescreen displays. Both have CD/DVD burners. So WHY do I simply continue to go back to the PBook even though it’s slower in the CPU department ?
    It shouldn’t be a stretch…IT…JUST…WORKS.
    If the Antivirus software isn’t hogging CPU, it’s the background services that are running that cause this crash or that. Mr. Norton, your antivirus and firewall products, in a word, SUCK. And not in a pleasurable and satisfying way, either. I constantly go back and forth between Mac and PC, and you know what ?
    If I EVER win the lottery, forget about those thoughts getting myself a lamborghini, or a house on the beach. Hell, the first thing I’m gonna buy is MAC’S, for everyone in my family. My wife, the kids, parents, nieces, nephews, sister, brother/sisters-in-law, mother-in-law, EVERYONE. Everyone’s getting a MAC. And do you know why ?
    Because I’m tired of every time Windows runs an update of some such or another, half the system starts to develop symptoms of other maladies, and having to give family members the bad news that they’ve got malware this, or virus that, despite the fact that they’ve got just about every piece of software known to mankind running on their machine, to prevent that. Heck, in some cases, it even prevents usability of the system’s themselves.
    For most things most people do on their computers, and this is coming from a software developer, a Mac will not only do what they want, with less hassle. But I just gotta tell you, I always have a smile on my face when I walk away from my PBook, I can’t tell you the last time that happened after having to work for an extended period of time on my Dell.

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  33. I Am December 12, 2007 at 7:26 pm - Reply

    If I told you that the only thing you had to do to get what you really need in life, you would question it.
    If I told you why you do not get everything you ask for, you would not be able to understand.
    If I told you that your sence of time and mine do not run the same course, you may begin to wonder.
    I told you not to take my name in vain. My only son put it perfectly,” Love thy neighbor as thyself.”
    So what is it you really want? A map? You wouldn’t follow it! I have given you everything you need. Just as I know the exact amount of feathers on every bird, why would I treat you my most loved any less? I know what you need. If what you truly pray for , will do you harm…….should I answer that prayer?
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