Designed by Apple in California

If you were reading my blog last week, you might've figured out that I purchased one of Apple's new aluminum MacBooks. It's not that I'm particularly enamored with Apple, but I've been looking for a sturdy 13.3" notebook for a while, and this one certainly seemed to fit the bill. It runs Windows anyway, right?

After a long and confusing journey from Shanghai to my apartment in western France, the machine finally arrived this afternoon—a few days earlier than expected. In Apple tradition, the minimalistic packaging includes the mention, "Designed by Apple in California," and presents you with your purchase immediately.

I've been playing with the MacBook on and off for about an hour now, and I'm pretty pleased overall. The aluminum chassis definitely feels sturdy, although the battery latch wiggles back and forth just a bit (they all seem to do that, though, and it doesn't particularly bother me). The keyboard feels nice to type on, and despite normally being a TrackPoint fanboy, I'm very pleased with the touchpad. There's plenty of room to make gestures, and being able to swipe your fingers around to zoom text or get an overview of open windows with Apple's Expose is very handy.

I'm also impressed with the display. I initially had reservations about the glossy finish, but the LED backlighting is so bright that's not really an issue. The TN panel isn't as bad as I expected, either, even if viewing angles do kinda suck.

Anyway, I still need to spend a little more quiet time with the machine, and maybe load up Windows Vista to run a few benchmarks. After that, it's review time.

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