Friday, February 18, 2011

The Platform Wars

I don’t understand why conversations about technology for education so often digress into conversations about platform. The decision for my school district to standardize with PCs several years ago was a financial decision based on the belief that we could offer quality technology for learning, and for working, with PCs at a significantly lower cost than we could with Macs. It was a financial decision based on the reality that a technology department can be much more productive if they focus on one platform with as few different hardware parts and operating system versions as possible. It was an educational decision based on the belief that we are deluding ourselves if we think we are teaching today’s students specific hardware and software for use in their future jobs. Technology changes too fast for that. In addition, in a world where most of what we do on computers is web-based, PC or Mac becomes largely irrelevant.

I can honestly say if someone asked me which platform I wanted for my work computer, I would respond, “I want the newest, most powerful computer you have to offer. I don’t care what the platform is.” I guess that’s why I find the often warring PC versus Mac camps perplexing. I’ve worked with both over the years, and I think they’re both great.

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