February 06, 2007

Charlie Brooker is so right, it hurts

You’ll have seen the adverts. Mitchell and Webb play a PC and a Mac. The PC is a dull geek while the Mac is a cool kid.

Except the whole advert is founded on ten tonnes of utter bollocks, as Charlie Brooker brilliantly explained in yesterday’s Guardian.

Aside from crowing about sartorial differences, the adverts also make a big deal about PCs being associated with “work stuff” (Boo! Offices! Boo!), as opposed to Macs, which are apparently better at “fun stuff”. How insecure is that? And how inaccurate? Better at “fun stuff”, my arse. The only way to have fun with a Mac is to poke its insufferable owner in the eye. For proof, stroll into any decent games shop and cast your eye over the exhaustive range of cutting-edge computer games available exclusively for the PC, then compare that with the sort of rubbish you get on the Mac.

I get fed up with my PC crashing, just like everyone else does. But it’s so true that Macs are still niche products capable of ‘professional’ things, while PCs are multi-purpose and can do most things just as well as a Mac.

Having said that, I’ve no intention of ruining my relative calm by installing Windows Vista, which sounds like a bloody nightmare.

P.S. If anyone can find anything in the canon of Charlie Brooker’s work which they disagree with, please do let me know.


- 18 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

[Skip to the latest comment]
  1. I want a Mac because of the fantastic web development tools available that aren’t available on PC. I also think that using Parallels to run any Windows program I want on the Mac OS desktop is a fairly neat feature and one that’ll be very useful for me.

    06 Feb 2007, 16:00

  2. Anon.

    Guess what…Windows can run any Windows program you want!

    06 Feb 2007, 17:15

  3. Adam Westbrook

    P.S. If anyone can find anything in the canon of Charlie Brooker’s work which they disagree with, please do let me know.

    Far from it. I think I blogged a while ago about how pant wettingly funny Charlie Brooker is…I urge all and sundry to tune into BBC Four on Monday nights for the third series of his hilarious show “Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe”. I watched it last night and laughed all the hair off of my body and had to spend 2 hours gluing it back on.

    06 Feb 2007, 17:15

  4. It’s very rare that an ad makes me want to go out and buy the product it’s competing against…

    In fact I just put in an order for 10 copies of Vista. Up yours Jobs!

    It would have worked so much better if they had a catchy theme song like “Apple Ma-cin-to-hosh – so misunderstood” – worked for Dr. Pepper. I tried it again even though I knew it would taste like arse.

    06 Feb 2007, 19:31

  5. Martin

    Normally Charlie Brooker is right about everything as you say… and in terms of hating the ads, he’s right again. They are annoying and slightly misleading, and as a mate of mine pointed out, rather stupid given that Webb is the Mac and everyone hates him in Peep Show for being such a self-centred, shallow dimwit. Not the endorsement I’d have chosen for any product.

    But, as the kind of person who can do more or less anythign with a mac (such as set up a 4-station wireless network at home and install a DVD-RW drive at home) but finds himnself at a complete loss faced with a PC, I’m a mac man through and through.

    And in any case, the difference is academic. The new Intel chips in Macs mean Macs can already run windows, and the new OSX.5 operating system will come with dual boot (into Windows and OSX) as standard. So anyone who loves windows that much can now run it on superior hardware.

    07 Feb 2007, 15:45

  6. Hang on… Intel make Mac chips. Intel make PC chips. So how can we now run Windows on “superior hardware”?

    At least with a PC we can customise the hardware we use with it.

    07 Feb 2007, 16:07

  7. me

    Comparing Macs to ‘PCs’ is meaningless now that the hardware is the same. If he actually meant comparing OS-X to Windows, then why didn’t he say so?

    There is more to a computer than the processor. Compared to a lot of PC manufacturers, Apple’s build quality is just better (exploding batteries aside!). The only comparable laptops to macs aesthetically are the Sony C3 range, and like-for-like, the Sonys are a lot more expensive.

    Charlie Brooker is, when it comes to computers it would seem, completely ignorant and does himself no favours by showing it as he has done. He has encouraged people like you and the stupid woman who wrote into yesterday’s Guardian stating that Mac users are unable to communicate with the rest of the world, to think they are intelligent- how can this be a good thing?

    07 Feb 2007, 21:20

  8. Sorry “me” but as a user of both Mac OS X and Windows, I love OS X but it really is shit for anything other than looking pretty and editing (sound, web pages, photos etc.). Yay! I Have GAIM! I have Adium! Can I have video calls with my friends? Sure I can (if both myself and they have AOL/AIM accounts!). Sweeeet.

    07 Feb 2007, 23:04

  9. Martin

    Hang on… Intel make Mac chips. Intel make PC chips. So how can we now run Windows on “superior hardware”?

    Because the beauty of apple’s hardware is that it IS ALL BUILT BY APPLE (or at least chosen by it). Therefore it’s all compatible and it’s all good quality. In fact it’s so compatible that Apple build some of the operating system into the hardware (they call it middleware). This is one of the reasons the Mac is a much better machine. Saying PC’s are better because you can customise them is like saying a kit car is better than a Mercedes. The compatibility of mac hardware is one of the reasons they don’t crash as much, keep their value and rarely suffer from hardware incompatibility clashes when you try to install some new bit of kit. Windows has a much tougher job to do than OSX because it has to try to make ANY disparate pieces of hardware the manufacturer throws together work together.

    At least with a PC we can customise the hardware we use with it.

    This is the main drawback of PCs. Too much of the hardware, with any manufacturer making drivers for it, just doesn’t work together.

    08 Feb 2007, 10:11

  10. I’ve never had a problem with hardware compatibility. Mac’s approach is way too authoritarian – “this is the setup you shall have”

    08 Feb 2007, 10:33

  11. Alex

    Martin:
    Because the beauty of apple’s hardware is that it IS ALL BUILT BY APPLE (or at least chosen by it). Therefore it’s all compatible and it’s all good quality.

    I cutom built my last PC, I don’t think any two components inside it were made by the same company. Guess what? It worked straight out of the box(es) four years ago, and still works today. Apple don’t have an exclusive market on compaticility and quality, you know.

    [Wide-ranging customisable hardware] is the main drawback of PCs. Too much of the hardware, with any manufacturer making drivers for it, just doesn’t work together.

    Rubbish.

    08 Feb 2007, 12:28

  12. Martin

    If you are the type of person with enough knowledge about computers that you can build your own from scratch, you won’t have a problem with PC compatibility. But you must accept that relatively few of the millions of people worldwide who use computers fall into this category. It’s like saying “Kit cars aren’t difficult to build because I know how to build one” or, “Plumbing isn’t difficult because I know how to do it.”

    I was round my brother in law-s house the other day trying to fit a D-Link network card into an old Time PC running W98. After several hours we phoned D-Link and they were mystified as well. They had to concede in the end that the hardware wasn’t compatible. I’m not saying this is universally true of PCs because it isn’t, but I am saying it happens often enough to make them troublesome for people who aren’t expert with hardware. And I’ve never been in that situation with a mac.

    08 Feb 2007, 15:51

  13. I was round my brother in law-s house the other day trying to fit a D-Link network card into an old Time PC running W98. After several hours we phoned D-Link and they were mystified as well. They had to concede in the end that the hardware wasn’t compatible. I’m not saying this is universally true of PCs because it isn’t, but I am saying it happens often enough to make them troublesome for people who aren’t expert with hardware. And I’ve never been in that situation with a mac.

    Ask your brother-in-law to try having a webcam conversation using MSN with you, using his Mac.

    08 Feb 2007, 19:30

  14. I’ve been watching Brooker’s Screenwipe recently and it’s superb. He’s very good at analysing TV. However, while I don’t actually disagree with anything he says, he is guilty of erecting straw men as a tool for intensifying whatever humorous point he wants to make. That can get a little bit annoying sometimes when most of the time he is able to effectively criticise something without resorting to excessive hyperbole.

    09 Feb 2007, 12:05

  15. Martin

    Ha ha ha. What’s the problem with using MSN a webcam on mac? I don;t know because I don’t have either a webcam or use MSN but if there is some kind of problem don’t the initials MS give you a clue as to who’s to blame?

    09 Feb 2007, 22:19

  16. Dave

    If you agree that Charlie Brooker is always right, then do you agree with him that blogs are shit?
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,1788774,00.html

    14 Feb 2007, 10:28

  17. Sigmatic

    while I don’t actually disagree with anything he says, he is guilty of erecting straw men as a tool for intensifying whatever humorous point he wants to make.[/quote]
    Isn’t that the point of the article? Surely he’s attacking Apple’s advertising techniques by adopting similar methods himself. That is why at the end of the piece, he says: -

    “Of course, that hasn’t stopped me slagging off Mac owners, with a series of sweeping generalisations, for the past 900 words, but that is what the ads do to PCs.”

    18 Feb 2007, 14:59

  18. I was talking about Screenwipe, not specifically the article. Perhaps you haven’t read or seen his other stuff – he adopts the tone in pretty much everything he does.

    18 Feb 2007, 16:47


Add a comment

You are not allowed to comment on this entry as it has restricted commenting permissions.

Twitter Go to 'Twitter / chrisdoidge'

Tetbury Online

Most recent comments

  • To quote from PM Cameron's speech at Munich Security Conference on the failure of State Multicultura… by on this entry
  • Not sure whether their installation can do that (though I assume it will), but I personally have a D… by Pierre on this entry
  • Yup. The figure at the end I guess isn't so much a sign of falling standards, as failing policy. by on this entry
  • Didn't the compulsory GCSE in a language get ditched a few years back? by on this entry
  • Yeah, that was a Brown–like kiss of death. by on this entry

Search this blog

Blog archive

Loading…

Tags

February 2007

Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
Jan |  Today  | Mar
         1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28            
Not signed in
Sign in

Powered by BlogBuilder
© MMXIX