Four generations of Apple laptops

Transferring MacBook to MacBook Pro

I just bought a new Apple MacBook Pro to replace my old black plastic 2008 MacBook, in order to get more memory and hard drive space, plus be able to run Mountain Lion. Abby and I also used this upgrade of mine as an opportunity to give her the old MacBook and switch her from running Windows computers. We have various reasons to switch her to Mac, one of them simply being that it’s easier for me to administer Macs (which I primarily use, at work and at home) than for me to have to deal with Windows computers also. Much easier to troubleshoot just one type of machine!

This new purchase means that I have now owned four different generations of Apple laptops.

PowerBook Duo 280c, bought used in 1995

My first Apple laptop was a PowerBook Duo 280c that I sold not long after I bought it.

PowerBook 145B, bought used in 1995

PowerBook 145B up in System 7 Finder

I [mentioned this laptop earlier]((/blog/2011/11/14/my-powerbook-145b/). It actually came out in 1993.

I last used this in 1998 when traveling to a conference while in graduate school.

PowerBook G4, 12-inch, bought new in 2003

Note how in 3 years, from 1995 to 1998, I multiplied my amount of RAM by a factor of 128, and multiplied my hard drive by a factor of 1000. That was wild. The PowerBook G4 marked the end of my buying desktop computers: my last desktop computer I ever bought was actually a brand new Gateway PC in 1995.

Here’s a photo of my (still running Mac OS Leopard PowerBook G4 next to my new MacBook Pro:

PowerBook G4 2003 and MacBook Pro 2012

MacBook, 13-inch, bought new in 2008

As a matter of frugality, I try to put off new computer purchases as long as possible. I probably should be less frugal, since at some point decreased productivity does kick in, but in any case, I did move from the old PowerPC G4 PowerBook eventually, buying the entry level black plastic Intel MacBook.

Note the dual processor. Also, note how in 5 years, from 2003 to 2008, I multiplied RAM by a factor of 12, and multiplied my hard drive by a factor of about 6.

Eventually I had to replace the battery, which swelled. I also upgraded to 4 GB of RAM.

Here’s a photo of my (still running Mac OS Lion PowerBook G4 next to my new MacBook Pro:

MacBook 2008 and MacBook Pro 2012

I’ve given this laptop to Abby as her first Mac.

MacBook Pro, 13-inch, bought new in 2012

I am very happy with my new MacBook Pro. I was having difficulties with my old laptop because of not quite enough RAM or hard drive space to work the way I wanted.

In 4 years, from 2008 to 2012, I multiplied RAM by 2.7, and hard drive by 3. I bet that in another 4 years, I’ll feel pinched again and need yet another upgrade! But for now, I am totally content. This machine is fast and spacious.

MacBook Pro 2012 in box


It’s amusing looking back at the progression of the Apple laptops I’ve owned over the past 17 years. Speed, number of cores, amount of memory needed, amount of storage space needed, all have gone up.

One thing I have learned from experience is that I should really upgrade sooner than I usually do. So maybe I should expect to upgrade in 3 years rather than in 4 years. But who knows? How demanding of resources are my Web browsers and programming tools going to be in the coming years?

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