Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Death of the Desktop

The main article in the Information Tech section of the March 2 Chronicle of Higher Education, titled and link above, looks at a fascinating survey at the University of Virginia, running frmo 2000 to now. They asked incoming freshmen about their computers and other digital paraphernalia. There is a dandy chart showing that vastly more freshmen come with laptops and only very few (90 compared to 2,993 laptop holders) are coming with desktop computers. The survey also shows that Macs are gaining steadily on Windows machines, rising from 2.8% in 2000 to 19.6% in 2006. The excellence of the Mac notebooks is undoubtedly driving the surge in popularity. But the survey also looks at "digital music devices," and IPods may also be giving the MacOS a halo effect increase in popularity. IPods seem to be by far the most popular brand, and 77% of freshmen at UVA are coming in with some kind of digital music player. Maybe I'll have to break down and get an IPod to listen to Jim's Check This Out programs!

Here are links to the UVA's own posting of the results of their survey, both in graph form: Computers
and More graphs. Thank you, UVA, for doing such an interesting survey over time, and then sharing the info! This age group is becoming our students, and will be our students in the future. Here at Suffolk, we feel increased pressure from our students to support the MacOS as well as the Windows system. I guess the pressure is just going to grow!

The beautiful drawing of an apple (edible kind) is by Boyd Purdom.

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