As someone who is not an Apple cultist, I might be able to give you a reasonable answer. I have a Macbook, a couple Linux machines, and a Win7 machine. The Macbook is my favorite by far. The thing that has really struck me about the Mac over the last couple years of using it is that, unlike Windows, the OS does not eventually slow down to crap speed over years of updates. I’ve got a 2007 model, and it’s still nice and speedy. As of Win7, IMO the interface preference between the two is a wash. They both have pros and cons. But this laptop is the first computer I’ve had for 5 years without feeling like it gradually turned into a piece of crap that needs to be thrown out. Plus it has X11, so it interfaces with my Linux box better than my Windows machine does. So as long as you’re not running graphically demanding games, you can get a lot of longevity out of the machine.
This ad always amazed me. The man is at the kitchen table with his Apple II while the wife smiles happily in the kitchen. This is such a fantasy. In the real world, the wife would not be smiling. She would be furious and not allow ‘that damn computer’ on her kitchen table. And she certainly wouldn’t be chopping vegetables in the kitchen. She’d be making him do it. So I see this Apple ad as pure fantasy.
Maybe it is just old habits but I really hate the idea of an integration of a computer and the monitor unless it is a laptop. If I ever went Mac, I’d probably start with one of the baby macs (the mini ones). Of course, I wouldn’t be able to play any game more technically demanding than Warcraft 3, but these Macs do have a steep price tag for someone used to ‘the IBM ways’.