Dan Sung on the differences between Mac OS X and Windows, and their respective left-handed, and right-handed users. First, the desktops:
Have you ever taken a good look at something as simple their desktops? There’s the recent addition of the Dock and obvious graphic subtleties but one thing, although noticeable, that barely seems to register is the icons and where they sit on the screen. Sure you can drag and drop them wherever you like but the default auto-arrange on the Mac is to the right side of the screen and, with Windows, it’s to the left.
The default layout for files on the desktop is Windows, left, Mac, right.
Icons on the right-hand side of your visual field fall into the left-hand side of your brain; meaning that on a Mac, your left hemisphere is occupied while the blank space on the other side of your desktop leaves your right brain to think.
So, right sided visual, left sided brain. Left sided visual, right sided brain. Windows is left sided. Mac is right sided.
The right side of the brain is associated with imagery, graphical and geometric shape analysis, is more intuitive and supports more holistic approach to thinking.
Next, time to compare and contrast the Windows desktop experience with the Mac’s desktop experience, right-handed vs. left-handed.
With the icons and the mess on the left side, the left brain is free to work and the left brain is sequential, logical, verbal, mathematical and supports a more linear approach to solutions. You could argue that it’s represented in the users of these systems and they ways they work – Apple providing holistic machines with everything you need running out of the box and in tune; a more design-orientated, image-friendly appearance and a strength in graphics applications – whereas PCs provide a more hands-on, straight numerical and logical linear-based approach.
Microsoft’s Windows has roughly 90-percent market share among all PCs. Apple’s Mac has about 10-percent. Generally speaking, right handers outnumber left handers by 90 to 10. But only 30-percent of Mac users are left handed. Microsoft’s Bill Gates, a Windows user, is left handed. Apple’s Steve Jobs, a Mac user, is a right hander. My father uses a PC. He’s left handed. I’m a Mac guy. I’m right handed.
It’s an interesting theory but seems full of exceptions. What are you? Leftie? Rightie? Mac, or Windows?