In case you've been living under a rock (or you just have a life that doesn't revolve around tech), Apple released a public beta of Boot Camp, a nifty little app that makes a partition for you to install Windows XP on your Intel Mac. Once installed, you can boot in either OS just by holding down the Option key on startup.
It was remarkably easy to do. There's a step in the process where you burn a CD with drivers for your Mac, and I can report that XP runs like a dream on it. I fired up Civ IV on it tonight and it runs great.
The whole experience has led me to a couple of conclusions:
1) Now that you can load XP on a Mac this easily (and the next version of Mac OS X will include this capability), there is officially NO REASON not to make your next computer purchase a Mac.
2) Windows XP has got to be one of the worst operating systems ever. I don't think I ever realized just how bad it was until I got used to Mac OS X over the past several weeks.
3) Despite it's stinkiness, it's still a great platform for games right now because of the sheer volume of titles available. The ability to boot up in XP solely for gaming purposes is great because I'm no longer limited in what I can play, but as I said it makes you realize even more just how much better OS X really is.
4) This is going to spell big trouble for Microsoft. Windows isn't going to go away, not by a longshot... but one of the major reasons Windows is so dominant is that it just comes standard with most computers you buy. Now that you can run it on a shiny, nifty Mac, more people will be willing to buy one and therefore will get OS X by default. And the more people that get OS X by default, the worse off Microsoft will be because Windows is decades behind OS X.
Thus concludes the only post I will ever write using Internet Explorer in XP on my Intel Mac. Now I'm going to play Civ IV.