Delusions of Grandeur August 2016

For Love of Mac.

I have a confession to make: I’m in love with the 11” MacBook Air. I’ve owned nearly every revision1 since the original was first introduced. It is my ideal Mac form factor.

Last week I bought another one.

This isn’t the first time I’ve written of my fondness for using small Macs to develop. When I started thinking about the computer I wanted for personal use, the 11” Air was at the top of the list.

It’s compact, and can be setup anywhere. It has enough USB ports to be the perfect computer for sitting next to a breadboard, plugged into a micro-controller. Bonus, it’s also the perfect size to write code on the patio. If I need more screen real estate, I can plug it into my Thunderbolt Display2.

When placed alongside other Mac laptops, it feels more responsive because its GPU has head room. It was made to push retina screens with four times the pixels found on the Air. Considering this, the compromise in speed doesn’t feel noticeable compared to larger models.

The 11” Air is the Leica M3 of the MacBook line-up. It is highly portable, nimble, and unencumbered by technology3 that doesn’t advance its utility. Also similar to the M3, the Air is a progenitor. The form factor of many modern laptops can be traced back to its design.

It’s a classic Mac, which everyone should own (at least) once.

"MacBook Air in action"

Photo. MacBook Air, in its natural setting.

  1. I owned the first Macbook Air from 2009, then bought the newer design models from 2011 and 2013. The most recent is the 2015 11” model, fully loaded with a 512GB SSD and 2.2Ghz i7.

  2. Which the MacBook cannot do, ahem.

  3. Retina screen, useless new ports, ultra-low travel keyboard, etc.