The last time I bought a new computer was some ten years ago, as I was getting ready to head off to college: an Apple PowerBook which is still running fine, though not much use for much these days as it lacks USB and Ethernet ports. Since then, a combination of growing technical expertise and simple cheapness has led me to supply the family with a succession of used computers which I wiped, cleaned up, and installed new parts on to keep running long past their natural lifetimes.
But a combination of frustration with seldom having working sound and video, plus a need to have a newer machine (our newest non-company-owned computer was four years old) on which to do graphics work, combined with a recent price drop and functionality upgrade among Apple iMacs, sent us out to the Apple store last night to pick up a sparkling new 17in iMac with a humming little 2.0Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo dual core chip inside (welcome to 64 bit processing, Darwin clan).
Macs have changed a lot in the five years I spent wandering in the Windows and RedHad wilderness. The white thing is a sleek looking (MrsDarwin approves of the new accent to her living room) but it'll take a little getting used to after a succession of grey and beige boxes.
I don't know if I'll make the transition back to single button mousing -- I think I'll head out in the next couple days to buy a two button mouse to replace this one. But aside from that things seem to be going well. I can't imagine what people need with the 20in and 24in screen sizes. Maybe it's finally coming out of the CRT world, but the 17in widescreen looks huge to us right now.