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My MacBook Air

This 3-pound Air is really an engineering marvel, though you do give up a bunch of things we've come to expect on laptops. There's no wired Ethernet interface, no firewire, no modem, no CD/DVD drive- in fact besides the power connector all you get is one USB, one video output, and a headphone jack. To load anything off a CD or DVD, they have a program that links the Air to your desktop, and you use the CD/DVD drive on the desktop.

The interesting thing is that two different people at the Apple store actually tried to talk me out of getting it. I wish they would have buttons that IT professionals could wear when they go to a computer store so the clerks don't waste our time, but I always try to be polite (that's tough for a New Yorker, but I'm working at it). I had studied the specs, read the reviews, knew exactly what I needed, and was more than comfortable with the trade-offs. And of course I'm a sucker for the cool factor.

I got the feeling Apple's been getting a lot of complaints and returns because people go ga-ga over the elegance of the Air and fail to look at the specs. My pal Buddy Shipley (the guy who makes fun of me for being a Mac user) told me one of his friends bought one and brought it back when he found it didn't have fire wire. His video camera only had a firewire interface, and despite the fact that there are USB/firewire converters, that was too much for him.

My review: Like any new tech gadget, there are always a few things that take a little getting used to (e.g. the track pad has some new features that seem to do more harm that good), but overall it works. And you can't beat the cool factor.