Video-Chatting at the Apple Store

Video-chatting cross country.

This is Abby and I video-chatting with our good friend Josh while we drool over Macs at the Southdale Apple Store. Josh was actually in California at the time, and we were able to connect after posting comments in his blog. As luck would have it (well, maybe not luck), Josh was at his computer at time time, posted a comment back, and we were in business. Video business.

Several of the Macs at the store are equipped with iSight, a fancy video-conferencing system. I’ve used it before to take pictures of myself in the store, but this was the first time I used it for its intended purpose.

Video-conferencing across the country confused a number of customers, but it was great. We got to see Henson and 5, as well as Stephanie eating breakfast. Unfortunately, the Apple Store was full of background noise, so it was hard to hear.

Of course I’m still trying to decide which Mac to buy. The eMac plays to my cheap side, though I’m still wondering if it would be wiser to buy a tower and have more flexibility (I can use my current monitor). Then my choices are the G4 or G5. I’m looking at a spread of prices from $1099 for the eMac, to $1499 for the G4, to $1799 for the G5 (they’re all SuperDrive equipped, which is why the eMac and G4 are slightly more expensive — it seems silly to miss out on DVD burning).

Anyway, I’m still waffling all over the place. The eMac is cheap, but the G4/5’s have expandability — I could add a second monitor. Of course the eMac is cheap. Is that future expandability worth $400? And if it’s worth $400, is it worth another $300 for the improved performance of a low-end G5? And where is all this money coming from anyway?

Sigh. Yesterday I had to reinstall Microsoft Office to get Access working (leftover problem from when I reinstalled my system a month or two back), and it magically fixed Outlook! I can delete e-mails again (everybody now, bah-leted!). Of course when I tried to attach files to my the first new e-mail I sent, it crashed everytime. A reboot seemed to fix things, but I find myself wavering back and forth between wishing my computer would crash so I’d be forced to buy a new one, and hoping it will hold on a little longer so I can delay that massive outpouring of cash.

Does anybody else spend this long thinking about these things?

14 thoughts on “Video-Chatting at the Apple Store”

  1. Sorry, I can’t relate. I have a PC at work, and it works fine (except for the CD-ROM drive that mysteriously went out a few weeks ago). I have a Mac at home, and it works fine (no CD drive problems to speak of). So no headaches and no hassle. I guess I shouldn’t take that for granted!

  2. I do spend time thinking about what new Mac I want, but not because there’s anything wrong with what I currently have. :-)

  3. I guess I don’t spend a lot of time wishing I had a nicer computer. For a couple reasons.

    I just got a new Dell laptop at work, and despite my pseudo hatred of Dell this machine actually works pretty well and I’m in love with its 1920×1200 resolution LCD. It’ll do about 3.5 hours on battery too, so that’s nice.

    The other half of it is I run linux on my computers, so they don’t get slower with time, crashing programs don’t equal reboots, and I never have to reinstall the OS. I understand this luxury is only possible since I have a higher level of computer knowledge than most people, but with a little patience and a lot of reading, you too can use an operating system not controlled by a monopolist.

  4. I took forever on my last computer purchase. The money was in hand, I just couldn’t decide. Did I want small, sleek, and shiny or slightly bigger, sleek and shiny? Even though I have my computer now and I absolutely love it, I still wonder sometimes if I should have gotten a different one.

    Oh, and think seriously about what kind of upgrading you are going to do. Most everything these days is a plug-in peripheral either USB or Firewire. The actual space inside isn’t worth much for most things. RAM, though, is worth looking at especially for doing graphics stuff. Usually the towers are able to hold more memory both you can upgrade both the towers and the eMac incrementally when you have the cash.

  5. Wait… Steph was eating breakfast? I seem to recall this happening yesterday evening.

    As for the pros and cons of getting a tower, I can’t help much, as I’m not sure how expandable Mac machines are, how easy it is to swap stuff, etc. What kind of stuff you get inside (Mobo, etc.) can have a huge effect on performance and future upgrades in a PC. No idea how much that translates to Macs.

  6. I liked watching the reaction of some of the employees. For the most part the Apple store employees leave you alone and let you play – which is really nice – but every once and a while they come by to ask if you have any questions. After we found Josh online, a couple employees stopped to ask us if we had any questions and then looked sort of embarrased about their question once they realized what we were doing. I also love the fact that nobody told us to stop. They just let us play as long as we wanted.

  7. Yum. I love Frosty Flakes in milk for any meal…especially slightly soggy Frosty Flakes because then the milk is sweeter. Yum.

    Yeah, I’m abnormal.

  8. I like it. I wear it all the time, actually. I have it sitting right next to me right now.

    Plus, it gets down into the low 50s out here. So that’s basically my entire Winter outfit.

  9. Yeah, I guess that’s kinda true! My head gets colder than a normal head would get because it’s got no insulation, so I guess my hat keeps it about as warm as a normal head of hair would for everyone else.

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