One small step for Mac. A giant leap for its bottom line...
Apple Macs? The preserve of macchiato-swigging designers and web developers, right? PCs? The preserve of science labs and offices. Or so we thought. But pictures of the Nasa scientists controlling the Mars landing of Curiosity rover showed them all hovering behind Macs. What gives?
Things have changed, explains Adam Banks, editor-in-chief of MacUser magazine, says. "Macs and PCs used to be different," he says. "You could do some things better on one and some on the other. Today, the technical differences are negligible; a Mac is just a really neatly designed PC with an Apple logo on it."
The Apple-focused blog TUAW.com also wondered the same thing as us and discovered that Macs had crept into the Jet Propulsion Lab (where the project is based) when scientists had started bringing their own computers in after the 2006 launch of the Macbook Pro, which was much more powerful than its predecessors and ran on processors reliable enough to make the computations necessary for a project as complicated as the Curiosity rover.
"The phenomenon of 'bring your own device' has been huge for Apple," Banks says. "And it's no surprise to see it in action at Nasa. The computers for the Apollo programme were screwed to the floor, but nowadays there's all sorts of kit floating around. In a geeky environment like JPL, of course people are going to want to use their own laptops for work, not some crap that their boss bought in on the cheap."
And they'll still do a fine job if you're just playing Farmville in Caffè Nero, too.
- 1 Forget 'The Dress': Here are five of the biggest news stories you might have missed
- 2 The black and blue dress: Makers considering a white and gold version
- 3 PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
- 5 Saudi Muslim cleric claims the Earth is 'stationary' and the sun rotates around it
Boris Nemtsov shot dead: Outspoken Putin critic who had expressed fears for his life is killed near the Kremlin
PornHub turns masturbation into energy in bid to save the planet
Ukraine crisis: Top Chinese diplomat backs Putin, says West should 'abandon zero-sum mentality'
White and gold or blue and black – what colour is the dress? An eyewitness gives a definitive answer
Saudi Muslim cleric claims the Earth is 'stationary' and the sun rotates around it
New theory could prove how life began and disprove God
Half of Ukip voters say they are prejudiced against people of other races
This is what it's like to be dead, according to a guy who died for a bit
'Cash for access' scandal: Sir Malcolm Rifkind says 'unrealistic' for MPs to live on £67,000 salary
'Jihadi John': CAGE representative storms off Sky News accusing Kay Burley of Islamophobia
Ukip would cut billions from Scottish budget to fund English tax cuts
£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...
£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...
£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...