This is what happens when a company known for style *and* substance decide to embrace style *over* substance for style:

The low-profile keyboards on the new Macbook Pro are a disaster. They’re far too sensitive to dust or debris and some break within two days of purchase

Complaints galore:

If you have an older model that still works fine, hold on to it for dear life. But make sure the keyboard is clean

I’m staying with my ancient Thinkpad

I’m going to sound like a dunce (I’m a Linux and Windows simpleton), but has anyone created a new, viable, laptop alternative to Apple’s lineup that runs macOS and all of its recent apps?

We’ll leave aside the proprietary vs. open source debate for now because this keyboard issue is affecting people I know

@cypnk and that link does nothing. Great. Fuck websites. It’s the 15 inch for $1,999

@rhys That sucks :( Did you try the air can trick? Not that it’s a permanent solution. I’m not sure what we can do about it short of Apple doing a recall. I have friends and colleagues who have this issue and it’s driving all of us (even non-Mac folks) absolutely mad

@cypnk the clip that connects that key to the underlying butterfly switch is broken, so I think I just have to go into the Apple Store and get them to fix / replace it. Good thing this is a work machine and I don't have to foot that bill 😬

@rhys Here’s to small blessings, I guess. Still, it’s an annoyance you can really do without

@cypnk yeah I'd love a keyboard that felt like the current MacBook Pro keyboard, was two to three times less noisy, and about a hundred times more reliable

@cypnk thankfully it was just the keycap. I just got back from the Apple Store where they put a new one on free of charge.

@rhys That's a relief. Still, it seems like an issue if a new keyboard has problems already. What about a few years down...

@cypnk this one is about a year and a half old. but yeah that seems like way too early for these problems to be popping up

@cypnk No one could do that legally. macOS terms require it to be run on Apple hardware.

@djmoch Rats! I kinda figured it would be. Well, it seems like until Apple gets their laptop act together, these keyboard issues are gonna continue. And some other nagging headaches

@cypnk What it sounds like you're asking for is a Hackintosh, which is possible with some existing PC laptops, but very difficult.

@impiaaa Yeah, that’s what I was hoping to avoid. Coupled with hardware incompatibilities and terms of use, this is turning out to be a kafkaesque mess

@cypnk Purism seems like the best option at the moment

the reviews for them seem to be quite positive

One of the biggest challenges for Linux is hardware variability. Purism model is similar to Apple, where they maintain both the distro and the hardware for it. So, they can make sure things work as expected.

@cypnk ah sorry missed the running Mac apps part, for that you're pretty much stuck with Apple unfortunately :(

@yogthos The issue is the ecosystem. I’ll have no problems distro-hopping, but there are still lots people who need their OS and apps to be the same for their workflow

@cypnk yeah I've been using macs for years because I simply got tired of maintaining Linux on the desktop. I really liked how everything worked well out of the box without me having to do anything.

Over the past few years I notice that the quality of both hardware and software took a nosedive.

I'm finally at a point where I'm willing to try Linux as my main OS again. Most of the apps I use either run on Linux or have workable equivalents.

@yogthos It’s not full of new features because it’s Debian Jesse based, but I use BunsenLabs. Of course, it’s a little minimal so some handy things are missing. For what I need out of a system, it works fine and does everything I ask of it

@yogthos I have a few UI tweaks and style changes (Conky, Tint2 etc...) let me know if you’d like to see how I have mine setup

@yogthos @cypnk hi you might want to give System76 Galago Pro a try I have been posting about it on my other instance

@cypnk I guess the problem is Apple stopped licensing macOS to third-party manufacturers long ago, and has cracked down on those who sell Hackintoshes ...

But I wonder if selling a replacement, better keyboard for those new MBPs would be allowed or not. Though how to do that with the amount of space available, I don't know.

Stuck with one of those myself at work, my solution is to move to a team where I can use a Thinkpad :p

@michel_slm Apple is doing a new thing now where certain hardware pieces are locked to the device or somehow fail silently if incompatible. They started with the iPhone, where changing the fingerprint sensor can fry the replacement (or brick the phone)

Some Mac components are likewise locked to the platform, but I don’t know if the keyboard escaped this. And if it did, for how long it will stay that way

@cypnk I would not expect that to happen as long as patent and copyright maximalists control the government. I'm also told #Apple hardware isn't all that different (just enough so their "only run on our hardware" hooks can engage), besides being pretty consistent (vs Windows and Linux running on a variety of hardware from dozens of vendors).

@lnxw48a1 That’s what I feared. Meanwhile, they’re only holding on because of current ease of use (which is slipping) and they have a captive ecosystem, but these things won’t last forever

@cypnk It's possible to run a "Hackintosh", but tons of stuff doesn't work since the BIOS won't be signed correctly. The best current MacBook is a several-years-old MacBook.

@mdhughes Yeah, that’s pretty consistent it seems. Looks like without Jobs to crack whips, things are slipping

@cypnk Yeah, I can't imagine Steve would let someone out of a planning meeting for the iPhone X or current MacBooks without a dent in their forehead or psyche. Those fucking things wouldn't be released.

@cypnk do you mean a device that runs macOS but isn't apple manufactured? it can be done, but you wouldn't want to build a business on it because AAPL could lock you out at any time, and you'd be cautious of buying one because of uncertain future to updates. (however people have run recent macOS on "hackintosh" hardware lots over the last few years ... but too tenuous for me except as a plaything)

@xurizaemon Oh yes, and I imagine it would be a lightning rod for the lawyers. That’s a shame though. If it weren’t for the ecosystem, alternatives would be easier to find

Apple is losing what made them noteworthy

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