Please Allow Me To Fanboy A Bit
Normally I’m not a huge fanboy, and I try (no, really, I do) not to turn into an Apple Fanboy (or a Linux Fanboy), at least to too extreme an extreme.
However, one thing I noticed a bit ago that I thought I should mention, at least in the “this is where Apple wins” department…. I opened up the iWork ’08 spreadsheet program, Numbers and was asked to choose a template. For shits and giggles I selected “Budget” and was presented with this default document:
(Clicky Clicky for a bigger image)
So first of all it’s beautifully setup, second of all it’s functional, and third, it’s well thought out. The sections and definitions make sense, it deals with the standard cases for a normal household budget. Also it allows you to relatively easily figure it out, giving very low barrier to entry by allowing the user to just plug numbers in to match your own particular circumstance. Oh, and this is probably the least colorful and “fun” of the templates that you’re presented with.
Does excel have anything like this? I really don’t like railing on Microsoft but when you start up excel you get an empty spreadsheet at worst, and a list of boring stock templates (if I remember right, no copy of Excel around here right now).
It’s this sort of thing that creates the Apple fanboys, and keeps them. The non-fanboys discount this sort of thing with “blah blah not industry standard software, blah blah too expensive blah blah pay Steve Jobs $200 every year for updates blah blah”, but someone (like me) who is not a fanboy and who has the opportunity to experience “the cult of mac”… it blew me away.
Apple somehow was able to make spreadsheets fun. Fun! Spreadsheets!! Me and Firefly sat down and started plugging in our own numbers and watching the graphs go up and down and it was fun! WTF!? It’s easy to talk about these things and discount them, but it’s really weird when it actually happens.
Fanboy mode off.