In short: I love my MacBook Air. It is the best (laptop) hardware
I ever owned. I have seen hardware which was much more flaky
in the past. I can set the display backlight to zero via software,
which saves me a lot of battery life and also offers a bit
of anti-spy-acroos-my-shoulder support. WLAN and bluetooth work nicely.
And I just love the form-factor and the touch-feeling of the hardware.
I even had the bag I use to carry my braille display
modified so that the Air just fits in.
I can't say how it behaves with X11. Given how flaky accessibility
with graphical desktops on Linux is, I have still not made
the switch. My MacBookAir is my perfect mobile terminal, I LOVE it.
I am sort of surprised about the recent rant of Paul about MacBook Hardware.
It is rather funny that we perceive the same technology so radically different.
And after reading the second part of his rant I am wondering
if I am no longer allowed to consider myself part of the
"hardcore F/OSS world", because I don't consider Apple as evil
as apparently most others. Why? Well, first of all, I actually like
the hardware. Secondly, you have to show me a vendor
first that builds usable accessibility into their products, and I mean
all their products, without any extra price-tag attached. Once the others
start to consider people with disabilities, we can talk about apple-bashing
again. But until then, sorry, you don't see the picture as I do.
Apple was the first big company on the market to take accessibility seriously.
And they are still unbeaten, at least when it comes to bells and whistles included.
I can unbox and configure any Apple product sold currently completely
without assisstance. With some products, you just need to know
a signle keypress (tripple-press the home button for touch devices and Cmd+F5 for
Mac OS/X), and with others, during initial bootup, a speech synthesizer even tells
you how to enable accessibility in case you need it.
And after that is enabled, I can perform the setup of the device
completely on my own. I don't need help from anyone else. And after the setup
is complete, I can use 95% of the functionality provided by the operating system.
And I am blind, part of a very small margin group so to speak.
In Debian circles, I have even heard the sentiment that we supposedly have to
accept that small margin groups are ignored sometimes. Well, as long
as we think that way, as long as we strictly think economically, we will never
be able to go there, fully. And we will never be the universal operating system,
actually. Sorry to say that, but I think there is some truth to it.
So, who is evil? Scratch your own itch doesn't always work to cover everything.
How do we motivate contributors to work on things they don't personally
need (yet)? How can we ensure that complicated but seldomly used
features stay stable and do not fall to dust just because some upstream
decides to rewrite an essential subcomponent of the dependency tree?
I don't know. All I know is that these issues need to be solved in
an universal operating system.