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Desktop Linux Share Overtaking Macintosh 926

Posted by michael
from the macintosh-is-dying dept.
prostoalex writes "Business Week magazine is optimistic about desktop Linux's future, telling a story of Capital Cardiology Associates, whose 160 employees migrated to Linux desktops. Furthermore, Business Week expects IDC to announce desktop Linux installations to reach 3.2%, for the first time overtaking Macintosh market share. By 2007, IDC forecasts, Linux will be installed on 6% of the desktops. It's also worth mentioning that desktop Linux market share for 2002 was 2.8% and that year it was behind Apple's operating system."
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Desktop Linux Share Overtaking Macintosh

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  • by stonebeat.org (562495) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:21AM (#8277516) Homepage
    Sun's Java Desktop [sun.com], which is based on Linux kernel and Suse Linux, will only help to increase the share of the Linux Desktop.
    Sun Java Desktop System is full featured desktop OS that includes StarOffice + Support from Sun Microsystems, and is available for only $100.
    Here are some more presentations on Sun Java Desktop [xml-dev.com]

  • Google says 1% (Score:5, Informative)

    by bhny (97647) <`bh' `at' `usa.net'> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:21AM (#8277520)
    Google Zeitgeist [google.com] still says Linux is 1% and Mac 3%
  • Re:As A Mac User (Score:4, Informative)

    by molafson (716807) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:32AM (#8277591)
    But also, lest you forget, remember that OS X, of course is based on Unix [apple.com] itself (FreeBSD). (Does that in any way qualify OS X for a "Linux distro"?).

    No, BSD is a blessed version of the old school source, Linux is a clean re-implementation. They're both good, but OS X definitely ain't a Linux distro.
  • Re:As A Mac User (Score:5, Informative)

    by burns210 (572621) <maburns@gmail.com> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:33AM (#8277600) Homepage Journal
    no, it doesn't. It qualifies it as OS X, based on Darwin. Freebsd is indepedent of linux, and freebsd, netbsd, openbsd, and darwin(which borrows much from freebsd) are in no way a 'linux distro'.

    To be a linux distro, the OS has to actually USE linux. *bsd and darwin don't use linux, they use their own open(and similar to eachother, in some parts) kernel.
  • Re:Google says 1% (Score:3, Informative)

    by OneFix (18661) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:38AM (#8277625)
    Probably because most Linux users change their user agent string to report as a windoze variant...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:41AM (#8277644)
    Nothing, that was a Simpsons reference
  • Re:As A Mac User (Score:3, Informative)

    by dbIII (701233) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:46AM (#8277667)
    OS X, of course is based on Unix itself (FreeBSD). (Does that in any way qualify OS X for a "Linux distro"?).
    Of course not, it's based on FreeBSD as you said - linux is something different. It does mean that most applications that run on linux can be ported to OS X withput too much pain.
  • Linux Compatibility (Score:4, Informative)

    by Phroggy (441) * <slashdot3NO@SPAMphroggy.com> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:46AM (#8277668) Homepage
    This was on Mac OS Rumors [macosrumors.com] two weeks ago; since they no longer have archives I pulled it from the Google cache:
    One of the biggest Mac OS X 10.4 features: Linux? It's that time of year again, folks - last year's big operating system release, Panther, is about to get by far its largest and most mature update yet in the form of 10.3.3 and Safari 1.2 in the next couple of weeks, and Apple's attention is beginning to turn to its next major release.

    One of our oldest sources has reported in on the beginning stages of this process, and the first item on his bullet list: Linux. Mac OS X 10.4 will more closely merge the Apple experience with that of Linux in several key ways that will visible to users as well as developers. Panther already implements a number of Linux APIs, but Apple hopes to make 10.4's adoptions higher-profile and therefore mirror (rather than cannibalize, we can hope!) Linux's success in creating an "opening wedge" into the Windows world.

    We expect to get more details as Apple fleshes out its concept work and gets coding. Stay tuned....
    Interesting follow-up to that:
    Apple's 10.4 "Linux initiative" could work both ways. Today's crop of new reports on this topic not only provide considerable confirmation that Apple is indeed pondering a "Linux adoption" move, but hint at an angle we haven't covered yet. It has been suggested that Apple could gain quite a bit of attention and support from the GNU/Linux/OSS communities by porting more of its key pieces of software to Linux: Xcode, Rendezvous, QuickTime, iTunes, and iChat have all been mentioned. More on this later in the week as we continue to analyze this particularly tantalizing line of inquiry....
  • Re:As A Mac User (Score:2, Informative)

    by be-fan (61476) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:55AM (#8277710)
    Its not based on FreeBSD. It uses parts of FreeBSD, but the bulk of the code is derived from Mach 3.x and 4.4BSD-Lite2.

    This and the Quartz "Extreme" bullshit are perhaps my biggest peeves...
  • by RoadkillBunny (662203) <roadkillbunny@msn.com> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:01AM (#8277736)
    SUN has asked my dad to test it and tell them what he thinks of it. So I installed it on my computer (booting win2k, gentoo and now JDS), and to tell you the truth it is missing a LOT of application and most of them are out of date. There isn't even a system where someone can grab a binary from the internet with a single click. So my thought are that if linux is going to prevail in desktop, it will eigher be with Mandrake or Lindows. Ximian would be my choice if I was looking for a free easy-to-use desktop because it is very easy to install applications and update with their Red Carpet.
  • by PotatoHead (12771) * <doug.opengeek@org> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:17AM (#8277817) Homepage Journal
    Win32 is getting a pretty nice grip on this market. Almost all of the MCAD (mechanical CAD) companies offer win32 versions of their software.

    Smaller, niche CAD players, do offer both Linux and Mac versions. PTC, one of the bigger players (for a while longer at least) does Linux today, with Mac coming.

    The problem is the number of users running strong win32 based programs. (AutoCAD, Solid Edge, Solid Works) While none of these packages offer the level of capability the bigger packages do, their numbers are creating a significant network effect. Very few mechanical engineering departments, found in small to mid-sized enterprises, run anything other than win32 systems. The big players still make good use of UNIX, with Linux being rare at this point and OS X being more rare or non-existant at best.

    These systems are increasingly being tied to back-end PDM (product data management systems) that aim to drive the product knowledge throughout the company. The reasons for doing this are sound, but the platform in the lead right now is win32. Given the strong intergration between win32 and office, additional intergration involving engineering and CRM software, Microsoft is getting hold of manufacturing and product design companies in a big way.

    Both Linux and OS X are going to have an increasingly hard time cracking this nut. All of the MCAD sales people use win32 running laptops. Older UNIX products are being ported and adapted to run win32.

    Many folks in this market do not even have Linux on their radar yet.

    Given this is my area of expertise, it is a depressing story really. Linux and OSS in general are a great story that almost never gets told in this space.

    Microsoft has been growing at the expense of commercial UNIX vendors, in this space for the last 8 years or so, almost unchecked. This is an area that Linux is ready for in many ways, due to its technical nature. The ECAD people along with the movie studios demonstrate this clearly.

    I'm afraid, without ports to Linux from the big players, the mechanical engineering and product design markets are going to be win32 for a long time to come yet. Even with the ports, the mid-range packages (having the majority of users) are win32 only at this point, because they leverage Microsoft tools at almost every level of the software.

    I fear the home software will come first. Maybe I am wrong, I hope I am.
  • by green pizza (159161) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:18AM (#8277818) Homepage
    The Mac OS X kernel itself is a derrivative of Mach. This is were essential kernel services plug in. A lot of the userland and driver space is based on BSD in general... some bits are from 4.4BSD Lite 2, some from FreeBSD, and some from OpenBSD. In fact, there was an article somewhere in which the author ran the latest Darwin (the opensource, non-gui part of Mac OS X) source through some scripts to discover that there's more OpenBSD in Mac OS X than there is FreeBSD.

    Remember, Mac OS X is based on NeXTSTEP / OPENSTEP, which were based on 4.3BSD and did not have any FreeBSD or OpenBSD code (in fact, NeXTSTEP probably predated FreeBSD).

    As far as the "Macintosh" side of things, only the Carbon runtime libaries were ported over for legacy semi-ported Carbon applications. Native Mac OS X apps are Mach-O binaries and use the (NeXTSTEP "NS") Cocoa library for GUI. There is also a "Classic" virtual machine for running Mac OS 9.2.2.
  • by Jad LaFields (607990) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:19AM (#8277822)
    I think part of the idea is that many gamers who use linux also *already* dual boot or have a secondary Windows computer for gaming, and so for them there is no point in selling them a Linux version.

    Yeah I'm sure someone will immediately respond to this post with a "I haven't used a Microsoft product in years and I play x, y, and z all the time!" But even if you represent half of the "linux gamer" population out there, that's still halving an already tiny market.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:32AM (#8277883)
    Lose

    LOSE

    NOT "loose"

  • Re:As A Mac User (Score:3, Informative)

    by burns210 (572621) <maburns@gmail.com> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @02:07AM (#8278018) Homepage Journal
    i respectfully disagree. to be a unix distro, it has to be a 'true unix'... solaris, tru64, hpux, the big boy's old skool unix(i forgot several, i am sure).

    A linux distro is something with linux in it. the linux kernel.

    in the case of debian supporting different kernels... i would assume that they just ported their package manager, either way, that would be a 'debian distro'... a distro is a subversion of a larger group... linux distro is a subversion of 'linux'. Debian can use freebsd or hurd, but that immediately makes it no longer a linux distro.

    actually, that would make it freebsd+apt, or a freebsd distro. but anyway. if it doesn'f run ontop of linux, it isn't a linux distro. :)
  • by Bluetrust25 (647829) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @02:20AM (#8278065)
    From the article, "Market researcher IDC expects to announce within weeks that Linux' PC market share in 2003 hit 3.2%, overtaking Apple Computer Inc.'s... Macintosh... software."

    My company, SurveyComplete, programs online surveys for market research companies. That's all that we do, and we're damn good at it. In fact, I'd say that we're the best in the world at what we do at this point in time and I'm proud of my work. Last year we completed nearly fifty research studies, covering over 800,000 interviews.

    This story really ticks me off because we performed an Awareness and Usage study across Internet Users (just two weeks ago) on the topic of Operating Systems and found that Linux is absolutely not overtaking Macintosh.

    While 26% of the 1,100 respondents we interviewed were aware of Linux or one of its many distributions, only 1% use it on a daily or weekly basis. Macintosh comes in at a healthy 6%.

    One of the most interesting findings in the study came from when we examined techies against the rest of the population and found that "Respondents who are male, aged 35 or more, use broadband, and are college educated (some college or more) are far more likely to be aware of Linux than the rest of the population" to the tune of 43% awareness of Linux in techies versus 15% in the rest of the population. That's a huge gap, a gargantuan gap. When we examined the operating systems respondents currently use, 3% of techies are using Linux versus less than 1% of the general population.

    When I read the results, it really shocked me. Why, this means that 2004 is not going to be the year of Linux on the desktop -- this goes against everything I've heard on slashdot! All those hours I've spent reading articles by people in the open-source scene talking about how this year, was going to be it. But this makes more sense: Nobody has really heard about Linux outside of nerds.

    Which is probably why the results of our study never appeared on slashdot (even though they were submitted last week.)

    It's really frustrating that this pro-linux propaganda gets through onto the front page while articles like ours which have results that make sense, get dropped.

    You can read our study results and find out if BSD is truly dead, here:

    2004 SurveyComplete Operating System Awareness and Usage Study [surveycomplete.com]

  • Re:It's worth noting (Score:2, Informative)

    by MysteriousMystery (708469) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @03:14AM (#8278299)
    Well, lower might work if Linux weren't free, as I said they are tracking sales figures for most of their research. Most of the Linux desktops aren't necessarily in the hands of consumers but are in the hands of business's that are using broadband anyway. Besides, there are quite a few winmodens that ARE supported out of the box these days.
    br> Also, think about all the people who have dual-boot systems, I know more then my fair share of them. Are those counted as Linux or Windows users?
  • by brandond1976 (638849) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @03:16AM (#8278304) Homepage
    I call bullshit.
    "Respondents who are male, aged 35 or more, use broadband, and are college educated (some college or more) are far more likely to be aware of Linux than the rest of the population" to the tune of 43% awareness of Linux in techies versus 15% in the rest of the population.

    That result is so far of base I can't even begin. 43% amoung techies? Hmmm... where did you give this survey? Was it only posted on some Windows tech site? Did you send it out as HTML formatted SPAM? Give me a break. Techies work with computers, they love computers, they spend time learning about them. This is akin to saying that only 43% of jockeys are aware of Palaminos or that only 43% of mechanics are aware of Lotus. Sure, they may not be intimately familiar with it, but they most certainly ARE aware of it. Christ, even the most non-techie people I support at work (the ones that need support when the dialog box that only has an "ok" button on it comes up) have heard of it.

    BTW, what was the name of your company? I want to make sure they I never pay attention to any of the stats you post. After all, 43% of us know you made them up :)

  • by namespan (225296) <namespan AT elitemail DOT org> on Saturday February 14, 2004 @03:46AM (#8278398) Journal
    Yeah, but considering that Apple caused it's own demise by sticking to proprietary hardware

    Demise?

    Net sales increased $465 million or 8% during 2003 compared to 2002 [hoovers.com]...Gross Margin of 1.7 billion [hoovers.com]...recent innovation [time.com]....

    Helluva death. One that a lot of companies would like to be enjoying.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 14, 2004 @04:00AM (#8278436)
    I'm a fag:

    Mac OS-X
  • by shaitand (626655) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @04:19AM (#8278488) Journal
    While your general point is true. It's worth noting that linux is an operating system, ie a kernel. RH doesn't add anything to linux in it's Enterprise edition. It adds applications, which are not part of the operating system, rather they are part of the distribution. The kernel is under the gpl, the gpl does not extend to applications that are bundled with it.
  • by mic256 (702811) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @06:24AM (#8278775)

    I have a Master degree in computer science. I studied together with a 100 people at my faculty. I work as an IT consultant at a rather respectable company, yet I have never seen a Mac in my life (just in pictures). Suprised ? Well, I live in Poland (approx 40 million inhabitants).

    Apple is pretty nonexistant in my country [ranking.pl] and probably in many others as well. The barrier in a country where the average salary is $500 and there is 20% unemployment is the price.

    The IDC survey, as I understand it applies to users worldwide and new computers! Your survey measures existing usage, which is something much different

  • by naden (206984) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @07:07AM (#8278882)
    If I'm not using the cursor, I'd like it to disappear

    You know you could just move the mouse to the side of the screen. But maybe thats a little too simple.

    Will MacOS X allow me to easily set up the combination of ctrl-j + l to switch to my web browser, and if that web browser doesn't exist, launch it?

    You can set hotkeys to launch applications. Just not ones that involve multiple key presses. For example, I map the F* keys to launch applications.

    Also I use Launchbar .. which allows you to type the first few letters of the application to open it. Both useful and elegant.

    But I don't think you've ever used OSX have you ?

    Don't think everyone who uses the Unix-like OSes are a bunch of twiddling geeks who are content to fiddle with the OS while Mac users end up getting real work done.

    Guess what .. OSX IS a Unix-like OS. Hence with OSX you can both fiddle AND get real work done. You do realise that OSX is just *BSD with a pretty front end dont you ?

    OSX is and will probably remain for the medium term a shining example of what KDE/Gnome should have been.

  • by MrHanky (141717) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @07:11AM (#8278887) Homepage Journal
    Truly an underappreciated, and highly marginalized system as far as graphics, and rendering goes...

    Maybe because SGIs were, and still are, ridiculusly expensive. I was given an Indigo^2 for free a couple of months ago, and naturally started surfing for info. I found this [vuurwerk.net] old article about the machine (from 1993), skimmed through it: "Wow, UK 8,000 for that computer?" Pretty expensive. But when I read the article again, I understood that was the cost of only the graphics card... "The Indigo2 costs 34,000 UKP." That's about half of what my parents got for their house when they moved, in 1992 (houses have at least doubled in value since then, and an Indigo^2 is worth almost nothing).

    My point is: You don't buy an SGI unless you really need it, or if you have too much money.
  • by StormReaver (59959) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @09:51AM (#8279381)
    "I wanted to do things like burn DVDs, edit video, play Quicktime movies. Sure, you can do these things with Linux, but I've got other things to do than spend hours/days/months trying to get everything sort-of-kind-of-working."

    I don't think any mainstream version of Linux comes with video editing tools out of the box, so I'll grant that point to you.

    Burning DVDs with Mandrake 9.2 means right clicking on a file and selecting k3b. Playing Quicktime movies (and any other media file) on Mandrake 9.2 involves nothing more than clicking on the file. All the necessary software is preinstalled.

    The Mac probably still has an advantage in some areas, but the gap has closed considerably in others.
  • by alcmaeon (684971) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @10:43AM (#8279659)
    "Just because MacOS X 'just works' for you, doesn't mean that it will 'just work' for me."

    Sure it will, you just may not like the way it "just works" especially if you prefer twiddling with settings all the time.

    "If I'm not using the cursor, I'd like it to disappear. Does MacOS X 'just work' for me in that way?"

    Yes, in fact, it does just work this way. Have you actually used OSX? If you had, I'm sure that in less than 1 minute you could have deduced that this is an application-specific behavior. The cursor disappears in Safari or Word, for instance, but not in iTunes. Makes sense if you think about it. You primarily read in Safari where a cursor in the middle of the page could be annying. You primarily type and read in Word where a cursor would be jsut as annoying for the same reasons. In iTunes you primarily select things with the cursor where it is more important to have the cursor in a location so you don't have to "jiggle the mouse" to see where it is before moving it.

    Would you really want the cursor to disappear in the Finder after 5 seconds of inactivity?

    I don't understand this objection at all.

    "Oh, and I like hotkeys. Will MacOS X allow me to easily set up the combination of ctrl-j + l to switch to my web browser, and if that web browser doesn't exist, launch it?"

    Well, you could either use a macro utility, or pretty easily set up an AppleScript to do this, but this functionality is not otherwise built in for reasons that make sense as someone else pointed out.

    "There's just two trivial examples I found off the top of my head. I could easily add more."

    Find us two non-trivial examples.

    "Don't think everyone who uses the Unix-like OSes are a bunch of twiddling geeks who are content to fiddle with the OS while Mac users end up getting real work done."

    I don't either, but I do think that one of the selling points on every Linux distro site I have seen is configurability of the user interface which is fine If you are a twiddling geek, but not fine if you want uniformity of user experience across a company's computer installation. It is typically something that doesn't lead to productivity either. My user interface customization is limited to changing the desktop picture. Otherwise, I spend all my time actually using the computer.

    "I'm not sure about the rest of the crowd, but the reason I use unix-like OSes is because its more efficient for me to get my work done."

    Another good point. So, on the Mac, just run all your Unix apps in Quartz accellerated X11. I do this all the time, but I still dont' twiddle with the interface. What is the big deal?

    Alcmaeon

  • by poemtree (61258) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @11:07AM (#8279788)

    confuse market share for installed base. IDC (subsidiary of IDG) is one of the worst undercounters of Mac marketshare and installed base. A quick look at Google's Zeitgeist [google.com] shows 3% Mac, 1% Linux. I know these number are not perfect as we all spoof browser IDs, but I think the the ratio of Mac to Linux boxes undercounted due to spoofing is also likely 3:1.

    Apple has sold nearly 30 million Macs since 1984. The PowerPC shipped a decade ago in 1994. Any PowerPC will run OS 9, any G3 will run 10.2, and any factory USB machine will run 10.3 (officially, XPostFacto [macsales.com]). That is something like 20 million machines still in use mostly as desktops.

    I don't hate free software, and I think Mac OS X and Linux complement each other. I just hate these so-called analysts with their biased numbers. My wife used to work for an economics firm that did analysis for the telecom industry. I would liken what they did to selling cosmetics to ugly people to make them look better. They tailored their reports to put the companies that were paying for the reports in the best light no matter what the truth was. IDC is no different. If Apple gave them a crapload of money, they would say Apple's marketshare far outpaces Linux.

  • Re:Er... (Score:3, Informative)

    by a_n_d_e_r_s (136412) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:46PM (#8280399) Homepage Journal
    The 166 Mhz Pentium was available in the second half of 1995.

    So when you bought your 166Mhz 1997 it must have been kinda slow - compared to the best.
  • by WillAdams (45638) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @12:48PM (#8280414) Homepage
    But NeXTstep _was_ available for x86 (and one can still find copies here and there if one looks) --- why didn't you run that? Oh yeah, it was $795 / seat w/ _extremely_ limited hardware support, and if one called in for tech support on install, one might get a tech who didn't know that (for example) ThinkPads need to have their memory size specified at boot so as to not interfere w/ APM. (Nothing personal mind, I'm just still kinda bumming I never managed to get NeXTstep running on my ThinkPad....)

    If Apple had tried to make Mac OS X available for x86, they'd've been pilloried over limited driver support --- if you don't believe that, go try out Darwin on x86. What? You don't have the exact motherboard specified? Sorry.

    Interestingly, it's looking like a _lot_ of what will be available for people using in Linux will be derived from things developed on NeXTstep (and I'm not talking about Doom, FreeHand and the World Wide Web) --- GNUstep has really improved by leaps and bounds in the past year, and a _lot_ of nifty software has come up, most notably a full-fledged PostScript / vector drawing program, Cenon available from http://www.cenon.info (so one no longer need regret GYVE being given up on, or a certain Japanese company not following through on an offer to donate their internally developed drawing program).

    There's a new look, and a lot of new stuff available at http://www.gnustep.org --- check it out.

    William
  • by 0x0d0a (568518) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @01:34PM (#8280685) Journal
    Yes, but there are two big factors that changed.

    1) Open Office is good enough. Open Office used to kind of suck. A lot of bugs have been fixed in it, and you can sit down and actually do work in it. Office applications are the big barrier out there.

    2) Big companies are backing Linux. IBM's been behind Linux for a while, and now Novell, HP to some extent, etc. The mainstream folks now are willing to go with Linux.

    It will still take time. There is no magical 12 month window. However, Linux users are increasing. Not many folks move from Linux to Windows, and there's a steady flow of users to Linux.

    Remember that about ten years ago, there were just a handful of Linux users looking out at the wide world and what might happen. I'd venture to guess that the number of Linux users has done better than double each year, and that's pretty respectable growth.

    Remember when Linux wasn't a serious server OS? There were folks that said that it was a toy, and that you needed a real UNIX system if you wanted to do serious work. Well, damn, Linux seems to have tromped all over and overrun those "serious UNIX systems" on the server.

    Has Linux become a major desktop player yet? No. Has it gotten more desktop users each year? Yes. Has it gained more corporate support each year? Yes. Is the software getting better faster than Windows? You bet.

    And as for the link to Syllable...get real. All the complaints you listed, *especially* the ones about market share, apply tenfold to AtheOS. Hell, I'm a geek, and *I* didn't know that there was an AtheOS fork.
  • by SiliconJesus101 (622291) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @02:37PM (#8281101) Homepage
    If you must know, I paid $250.00 for my Sawtooth with it's original 450Mhz G4. I added a 1.2ghz CPU, actually 1Ghz...but rated to overclock to 1.2 by the manufacturer ($329.00), an original Radeon 32MB AGP card ($32.00), swapped the 100MB Zip drive for an old 250 Zip that I got for free, and dumped in an 60 gig 7200RPM drive ($39.00 after rebates).

    The original full pop list price for this machine 6 years ago in 1999 was $2499.00. By my calculations, based on the fact that the machine currently sells for an average of $500.00 used without any of the upgrades I added, it has lost 80% of it's value over a 6 year period of time. And while a comparable (?) x86 system from 1999 may have cost only around $2000.00 you will now have to give it away for free to a friend that just needs an old junk router box. And yes, by comparable I mean nice case (not some bleeder beer can case with a crap power supply), 64Bit PCI slots, Firewire (ieee1394), DVD-ROM drive, etc...basically fully loaded as a Mac comes by default.

    Please make sure that you are comparing Apples to apples....pun intended. Any x86 system built with low grade cheap components will most assuredly be far less expensive than a Mac, but once you get into loading up the PC with the things that are standard on a mac, you may find your x86 systems to be a bit pricier than expected; Please don't compare the Mac pricing to a Wal-Mart special eMachine.

  • by nineoneone (748675) on Saturday February 14, 2004 @05:58PM (#8282307)
    (from their website) : Note on methodlogy These results are based on 1,171 interviews of internet-using adults from the U.S. sampled from the SurveyComplete panel. The results were weighted where necessary to align them with the current online population on the following demographics: age, gender, ethnicity, education, and internet connection. With results based on a randomly chosen sample of this size (N=1,171), there is a 95% confidence rate that the results have a statistical precision of plus or minus 2.9% of what they would be if the entire adult online population of US households had been polled. The sample used for this study was not a random sample. While individuals were randomly sampled from SurveyComplete's panel for this survey, they had previously chosen to take part in the panel. Furthermore, all surveys or polls are subject to other sources of error which are probably of greater impact than these theoretical aspects of sampling error. These other significant sources of error include: question phrasing, question order, weighting of demographic data, and refusals to be interviewed (non-response error.) Quantifying the errors that may result from these additional factors would be impossible. It might actually be true - generally - for the US, but I'm certain differant results would be found here in Europe and the rest of the world.

That does not compute.

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