This bad boy arrived via socially distanced courier yesterday - a shiny new iMac. My faithful old 1st Gen retina iMac was getting pretty long in the tooth and although it was plenty fast enough for my writerly needs, it was starting have a few issues with screen burn-in. I guess that'll happen when you sit in Scrivener for six or seven hours a day for six or seven years.
Anyway, I'd been feeling a bit flat after all the sickness and surgery and when my daughter asked not-so-innocently whether I might be thinking about upgrading my desktop soon I leapt on her transparently self-interested provocation. A few clicks later I had a maxed out M1 iMac.
The new iMacs come in a pleasing rainbow assortment of colours and I got it in blue because I'm not some sort of hippie animal. Dumped as much RAM and storage in there as God and physics would allow. Opted for a magic trackpad because we all need a little magic in our lives these days. Bought a bunch of adaptors for the USB-C ports.
I'm typing on it now. It's beautiful. The screen is so sharp it makes my eyeballs hurt. But it’s a good hurt. The new native software is scary fast but even the legacy programs – like Scrivener – are noticeably more responsive than on my old set up. And as I said, it was still punching hard and fast after all those years.
With a new system I’m always tempted to go for a clean install. Just peel off the Glad Wrap and put pedal to metal. But of course we can’t do that anymore. The days of pushing a floppy disc into a drive to copy over a couple of dozen docs are just a fond memory. (Fun fact and memory; I submitted the Felafel manuscript on one 3.5 inch disc. I think its archived somewhere at NSW State Library; probably unreadable now).
Instead I migrated the disc state from the old iMac to the new one via wifi. Less exciting, more convenient. Or at least it was until I hit a couple of road bumps with cloud back up services like Dropbox, One Drive and Backblaze. An hour or so of noodling around sorted their shit out, the cheeky fuckers.
I did worry that the slightly smaller screen might be a step down in usability, but I’m embarrassed to admit my old 27-inch display was so big, and my eyesight is getting so bad, that I was starting to have trouble reading text at the edges. It was a good argument against waiting on the rumoured mega displays that might be coming later this year. I’d probably have to get up and walk all the way down the other end of my desk to see what I’d written in the next document over.
The slightly more compact display still has plenty of real estate. I can edit two full sized documents in one window of Scrivener, which is all I ask of life these days. I haven’t watched any video on it yet, but I don’t doubt it will look spectacular.
I can’t really do that until I get some paid writing done, though.
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