The Accountant with a Mac – Part 1 2012

I’ve been an accountant for 30 years and a partner with Dafferns LLP in Leamington Spa and Coventry for the last 12.

Computers first appeared at work back in 1983 with a twin floppy disk Commodore, one of two standalone machines, shared across the office, where you had to book time on them in advance. The first computer on my desk was a Windows 3.1  jobbie, networked at Ellacotts in Banbury in 1993.

Returning to Dafferns in 1999 I had the first of what is now 6 laptops. Starting with a 14in Dell running Windows 98, followed by another Dell on Windows 2000 ( a machine recycled around the Leamington audit team and which became known as old faithful – even with a missing enter key), then two Acers, before in 2007 I upgraded to a 17in Samsung R700 running Vista.

The Samsung was and still is, just about, a great laptop.It has lasted 5 years, far and away the longest of any of my work computers. That said, I strains the definition of the phrase laptop as it scorches your legs and will heat a glass of cold water inadvertently left by the fan exhaust and weighs about 4kg. With an Intel  Centrino chip, chock full of 4GB of Ram and armed with the then new Office 2007, it has been the best laptop I have had……… to date.

However, at 5 years old, with a screen flicker that is getting worse and worse and taking nearly 5 minutes to boot up, its life was coming to an end and thoughts turned to a replacement. On the face of it the answer was easy, just ask Jon, our IT guy, to find me the cheapest 17in laptop with an Intel processor and away I go again with Windows 7.

The prospect did not fill me with excitement al all. The world of PC laptops has not really moved on and replacing one dull laptop that I knew was reasonably reliable with a new one which would in all honesty not be much better, judging by the number of  new laptops the firm have bought, was one reason I had stuck with the Samsung for so long.

There was of course an alternative. Turn to the dark side, abandon the PC and buy a Mac…………..But would it work, a single mac on a network with 40 PCs, where the mission critical software (Iris, Invu and Sage) all run only on windows, networked across the office? Time would tell.

To be continued…