11.1.08

"I am firmly of the opinion that the Macintosh is Catholic and that DOS is Protestant."


Umberto Eco pondered The Holy War between Macs vs DOS, regardless of the religious beliefs of their users, back in 1994:

"I am firmly of the opinion that the Macintosh is Catholic and that DOS is Protestant. Indeed, the Macintosh is counter-reformist and has been influenced by the ratio studiorum of the Jesuits. It is cheerful, friendly, conciliatory; it tells the faithful how they must proceed step by step to reach -- if not the kingdom of Heaven -- the moment in which their document is printed. It is catechistic: The essence of revelation is dealt with via simple formulae and sumptuous icons. Everyone has a right to salvation.

DOS is Protestant, or even Calvinistic. It allows free interpretation of scripture, demands difficult personal decisions, imposes a subtle hermeneutics upon the user, and takes for granted the idea that not all can achieve salvation. To make the system work you need to interpret the program yourself: Far away from the baroque community of revelers, the user is closed within the loneliness of his own inner torment.

You may object that, with the passage to Windows, the DOS universe has come to resemble more closely the counter-reformist tolerance of the Macintosh. It's true: Windows represents an Anglican-style schism, big ceremonies in the cathedral, but there is always the possibility of a return to DOS to change things in accordance with bizarre decisions: When it comes down to it, you can decide to ordain women and gays if you want to."

No wonder I love them both! I've been trying to find a religion I fit into 100% for years.

For those of you who are still undecided, perhaps this video can help you out:

2 comments:

Shannon said...

Ahh, but with the ability of Intel Macs to run Windows stuff (and Unix and Linux), the Catholic Church of computers has become truly Catholic once again.

Mu said...

Can I mention I have seen and/or used every Mac model mentioned (including the Mac Plus)?