Tuesday, 17 March 2015


The New #MacBook
On Monday, March 9th,  #Apple gave people who follow Apple news plenty to talk about. But for #Mac users, the biggest news probably has to do with all the ways the new MacBook diverges from what we’ve been used to over the past few years.
No MagSafe, #Thunderbolt, or standard USB ports, all replaced by a single #USB-C port—that’s big news. On of the updates is the new MacBook’s keyboard and trackpad, which are unlike any of those currently found in the Mac line.
The New #Keyboard
Apple designed the keyboard in the new MacBook to have reduced key travel, presumably because the thing is just too thin to allow those keys to move very far up or down. That seems reasonable, but when Apple extolled the virtues of the new keyboard on Monday, they raved about the increased size and stability of its key caps, the clever design of the butterfly keyboard switches, the stainless steel dome switches. So is this a compromise keyboard specifically designed for the MacBook, or does Apple feel this keyboard design is so great that it’s going to make sure that all its future Mac keyboards are exactly the same way?
Apple says the new keyboard’s butterfly mechanism is more stable than the old scissor-switch keys.
Each key cap is larger, which means they should be easier to hit—but the space between keys has been reduced, which would seem to me to be a decision that would increase the chances that your finger will hit the wrong key. Each key is individually #LED lit, the Escape key has been elongated and the function keys narrowed. The arrow #keys have been redesigned; the up and down arrows are still half-height, but the left and right arrows are now full sized.
The New #Apple #TrackPad – The #Force #Touch
The new MacBook trackpad that Apple has implemented has a series of force sensors underneath the trackpad surface and a #Taptic #Engine that can vibrate the surface on demand—is a remarkable simulation of the real thing. When you press on the trackpad, the Taptic Engine fires up and shakes the surface of the trackpad. Your brain interprets the vibration and the pressure as a downward click, even though that’s not what’s actually happening. (The vibration from the Taptic Engine is from side to side, not up and down.) This is all presumably to drive a little more thickness of out of the MacBook, but it has a fun side benefit: Now the clickiness of the trackpad can be controlled by software. A new #slider in the Trackpad system preference pane lets you adjust how much force is required for a click, so you can tweak it to fit your preferences.
The Taptic Engine is software controlled, so you can tweak its behavior in System Preferences > Trackpad.
The Taptic Engine is software controlled, so you can tweak its behavior in System Preferences > Trackpad.
Don’t Forget
When using a MacBook and your favorite #ESRI #ArcGIS Platform, look at VMWare, BootCamp, or Parallels. @RedEarthGeo, some of the Apple products we set up for our clients leverage the Parallels software with no real issues for ESRI products that are to be on a Windows Environment.
If you don’t like the Apple Products for your #Geospatial use, contact us, as we can set you up with a custom machine at a reasonable rate.

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