I do both design and development and I’ve dreamed of the day I can leave my beloved Apple behind for more open pastures. See, I’ve been using a Macintosh in some for or fashion since 1984 (when I was 8). But over the last few years Apple has made it perfectly clear that their market is now the consumer, opposed to the professional. From a business standpoint I can completely understand this pivot to go where the gold is, but as a professional who makes his living behind the computer, it scares the living shit out of me.
To prepare for my departure I have tooled around with Ubuntu running on Apple hardware. I am insanely close to a fully usable system, for what I do. Unfortunately there are 5 missing features / apps that I absolutely need to be running at full capacity.
NOTE: My requirements are that these items are EASILY installed in Unbuntu. When I say easy I mean my someone over 65 with little computer experience can install them.
Professional Level Design Tools.
A real competitor or port of Sketch, Fireworks or Photoshop (and no, Gimp is not an option). I’d be happy if we could even get Fireworks or Photoshop running via Wine without all the hacking.
Full Magic Mouse capabilities.
The magic mouse is a killer mouse for swiping between desktops, scrolling (naturally) and navigating back and forth between web pages. On Ubuntu I have natural scrolling, but still no easy way to leverage the other multi-touch functionality.
File browser with real Miller Columns.
Miller Columns in Mac OS X is a killer feature left over from the Next OS days. I’m a productivity whore with Column view and absolutely hate not having access to it.
1Password has completely changed the way I manage and set passwords and has become absolutely indispensible. For example, I couldn’t tell you my Facebook password if I wanted to – it’s about 32 characters log with a mix of upper and lowercase and special characters. But with 1Password I don’t need to remember it.
Better Email Client / Calendar
Thunderbird is fine and dandy, but compared to the modern-day email clients like Sparrow and even Mail.app, it feels ancient. There needs to be a app(s) that’s a real replacement for Outlook and Mail.app/iCal.app. Geary is a new player in the Linux Email client field that’s pretty bad ass for as young as it is.
Reminder: This post isn’t saying Mac is better than Ubuntu or this is better than that. This post is simply stating why – I – can’t switch YET. I’ll be writing another post explaining all the things I absolutely love with Ubuntu 12.04 – and the reasons why I am excited to eventually switch full time.