Photo from 2007 in Singapore of My MacBook Pro circa 2006, and my cute iBook G3 circa 2002, still kicking!
Photo from 2007 in Singapore of My MacBook Pro circa 2006, and my cute iBook G3 circa 2002, still kicking!

Given the sheer volume of work I have to do today, I figured now is as good a time as any to create another rambling Rubenerd Blog post with little substance or meaning. Call it an escape if you will. In this post I'll be discussing Apple notebook hardware.

Of course Apple fanatics already know about this latest news:

Apple is expected to unveil updates to its laptop line next week with the official confirmation issued overnight that it was planning a press event in the US.

The event will be held on October 14 in Cupertino, California, according to an official invite which landed in the inboxes of staff at sister site CNET News.

Not mentioned in the invite is the most persistent rumor about the launch: that at least one of the new systems will hit a price point of US$800. New Apple laptops to arrive next week

My venerable, original generation MacBook Pro from 2006 is definitely starting to show it's age, specifically with regards to it's CPU. Firstly, as my primary and only computer here while I study, it chews through large compilation and video editing tasks at a fraction of the speed of my DIY tower back in Singapore. When you schedule tasks to go on overnight so that you don't lose any productivity time you start to wonder whether your machine is up to the task!

Apple invite for tomorrow's event
Apple invite for tomorrow's event

For those of you who remember, the original generation MacBook Pro's were part of the first rollout of new Intel based Apple computers after using PowerPC chips, and for some reason Apple decided to ship them with 32-bit Core Duo chips, despite the even more confusingly named 64bit Core 2 Duo arriving shortly after. This means virtually all Intel based Apple hardware has used and continues to use 64bit chips, fueling speculation that their next OS Snow Leopard will be a purely 64bit Intel deal. It's misleading how they advertise Snow Leopard taking advantage of Intel chips without directly addressing the concern that it will only be 64 bit.

ASIDE: Talk about a guy and his developed world problems! Ooh look at me, my computer isn’t fast enough for what I need it to do!

But then I come to the inevitable question: what would I like to see in the new MacBook Pros? Time for a trusty unordered list:

  • Same rough dimensions, I’m not obsessive about thinness. I’d rather have a slightly thicker case if it meant it had bigger fans was more thermally efficient.
  • Increase the size of the LCD by shrinking the surrounding bezel.
  • The option for matte screens! Some rumour mockups suggest the new MacBook Pro looks like a cross between a current HP laptop and the current iMac. Not good!
  • If the rumours of dual GPUs come to pass, I would certainly not complain
  • Retain the silver backlit keyboard and not adopt the awkward chicklet keyboard of the MacBook Air.
  • Retain a FireWire 400 port as well as having an 800.
  • Ultimate pipe dream: dual gigabit ethernet ports! Hah, dream on!
  • More USB ports. My old MBP has two. The current 15″ models have three. Four would do the trick, especially considering this is supposed to be a professional computer.
  • Built in waffle iron and grilled cheese sandwich maker that feeds off the heat from the CPU.
  • Option for more RAM. My current MBP can only support 2GiB which I think is even more of a bottleneck than the CPU when video editing especially
  • Full sized ExpressCard slot instead of a ExpressCard 34 slot
  • A built in wheatberry which will detect how much bandwidth you have available and automatically tune you into an appropriate quality Whole Wheat Radio audio feed.

If we get half a dozen of these, I'll be a happy little munchkin. Less than half a dozen, and I won't be surprised. More than half a dozen and I'll be suspicious.