Law School Discussion

laptop, macbook, or ipad?

laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« on: December 28, 2010, 11:50:31 PM »
im considering applying for fall entry and had a question about supplies.

i just got an ipad for christmas but am thinking of exchanging it for something more substantial for school.  i have a desktop at home that is still working great for me.

do you think an ipad is a good laptop replacement, specifically in law school and the classroom setting?  or if not, do you suggest a macbook or a windows laptop?  my desktop at home, and all the computing systems ive ever worked with have been windows based previously.


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Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2010, 04:27:00 PM »
I wouldn't depend on an ipad because you will be typing quite a bit in law school, and probably will be taking exams on your computer. The ipad won't be compatible with exams, and you likely can't type as fast on it as you could a regular laptop.

I would just get a laptop of similar value to the ipad.
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Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2011, 10:06:14 PM »
What about mac vs. there pc specific law software that we will be expected to run?


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Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2011, 10:30:24 AM »
There aren't any barriers to macs or PCs at my school.  The software that is required for exams and such is compatible with both.
I had a PC for the first two years and I"ve had a mac for the last 6 months.  I love my mac. 
I think it's really a matter of opinion.  Many people who are just normal computer users (people who aren't heavy gamers or programmers) fall in love with the Mac operating system and the exterior design.  My macbook pro feels a lot sturdier than the dell xps I had before, and it just seems to have less software problems. 
Macs are obviously more expensive, but you rarely hear anyone say they regret getting a macbook.  I can count on one hand the times where someone has switched back to PC after switching to a mac laptop.

Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2011, 01:35:30 AM »
Leaving aside my personal opinions on Mac vs. Windows, I would make the observation that basically all law firms run Windows.  As a result, good familiarity with Windows and MS Office will likely be of help to you after law school.


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Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2011, 10:16:11 AM »
Choosing to make a bad choice because some future employers make bad choices seems to be flimsy reasoning.

If someone can manage to succeed at law school and pass the bar for there given state(s). They will likely be able to figure out MS Word on a windows box when they are faced with that challenge.

Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2011, 01:19:09 PM »
I like PC's better, but even if you are typically a mac person a mac isn't the best choice for law school imho.  My law firm only uses PCs (as do most firms and most of the working world) and although mac's were supported in theory at school a heck of a lot more mac users had issues at the end of exams than pc users (casual observation), mac users often couldn't print to the network printers and whined incessantly about how crappy MS Office ran on their machines. Apple does have awesome customer service and lots of folks like them, but its added hassle you don't need when you'll be in a networked institution.

I think a lot of people get turned off of PC's because they buy really cheap crappy pc's and compare them to a $2k macbook.  Of course a $400 HP laptop is going to suck - it'd suck no matter what OS you ran on it.  Buy a quality business class machine and run an OS that works for you.  If that's a higher end mac fine, if its a lenovo or whatever runing W7 you'll enjoy wider compatibility.

HLS 2010

Re: laptop, macbook, or ipad?
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2011, 04:03:02 PM »
I'm a mac user, and my exam software only works on Windows.  Boot Camp lets you run either Windows or Mac OS, but it seems like people who installed windows on their computers had major issues.  I have access to a spare PC, which I use when taking exams.  There are rumors that next year the exam software at my school will work on Macs, which is why I haven't run out to buy a PC.

I would recommend waiting until you choose a school, and then seeing what your law school uses for exams before making a purchase.  If you're looking to exchange, I guess you might have a time barrier to consider, but this is probably the safest option.  I am still highly loyal to my Mac, but I know how to use windows.  I do not see how my personal preference will have any bearing on my legal career.  Most people in  my section use Macs.  I just wanted to let you know that I have encountered barriers.