Intercultural Computing

WinappleOver the last year or so I’ve grown quite weary of the whole Mac vs. PC schism. I’ve come to realize that the Mac platform isn’t always the perfect solution to all problems, and likewise for Windows. Each computing platform offers its own benefits and pitfalls, and they deserve to be recognized for those qualities.

This mindset has led me to recently purchase a Windows-paced laptop computer, and I’m now on a quest to establish and manage a state of synergy between the two platforms. At the same time, I’m studying for an MA in Professional Communications with a specialization in intercultural communications. This morning my cohort began a new course with the director of the program, Dr. Zhenyi Li. In his opening notes, to exemplify the meaning of “intercultural” in comparison to “multicultural,” Dr. Li wrote:

An intercultural specialist will not only point out the differences, but also develop software so that PC files can be accepted and used in a Mac. To achieve collaboration is the goal of intercultural communication.

I took great solace in this. I’ve long realized that cultural issues extend beyond the stereotypical chopsticks vs. forks debate, but I hadn’t formally conceived of Windows and Mac being not so much about technology as culture. With this mindset, I feel a whole new horizon of solutions open up.

3 thoughts on “Intercultural Computing

  1. Your Dr, Li is behind the times as the Mac has been able to read MS files for years. It’s the PC that can’t read mac files. So his statement is questionable.He must be a PC user. Now the question is, why can’t any program read any file that is created in any other program?

  2. In fact, for years Macs could only read many PC-based file formats thanks to third party efforts, not due to native capabilities that Apple built into the Mac OS. And consider who was the major force behind those file-compatibility efforts: Microsoft, with its Mac Office suite. The monster from Redmond has done more to keep the Mac OS in the game than any other company in regards to enabling its cross-platform intelligence. Unfortunately, Apple doesn’t reciprocate in kind. Try to open a Pages or Keynote document in Windows: not gonna happen. Now consider how quickly Apple responded to compatibility problems with iTunes in Windows Vista. Well, they didn’t, actually. Microsoft fixed the problem themselves.

  3. Wow! Touchy, touchy.Pages can read and save a word document and Keynote can read and save a powerpoint document, but not the reverse. So which company is working with compatability, certainly not Microsoft.

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