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I'm not sure if my question is stupid but...

Why are we all on a laptop?

It's strange to me that we all felt the trade-off MacBook pro vs iMac was obvious

  • A lot of laptops used for programming rarely move anyway.
  • Why should I care the MacBook are even thinner now? It was not really a bottleneck for doing my work...
  • Working on a laptop ensure you have a crappy posture
  • Sreens are larger
  • You good good specs for a lower price.
  • the extra money saved can be used for buying a Chromebook it an iPad when you do need a computer on the go
  • You get ports, no need for lots of adapters
  • Keyboard is broken? No big deal

it's easier to go with a MacBook to the Meetup.
Ok, but going there without a computer and talking to people is better in my experience.


I think if you're in an on-call rotation you're stuck using a laptop, I don't see another option short of some kind of VM/remote access. I'm working remote of out of my home now and I'm basically docked all the time unless I want to work from a coffee shop or brewery for the afternoon. Honestly I'd prefer a beefy desktop running Linux but I've yet to work anywhere that has even considered a setup like that as an option.


I personally really move my laptop - working from the office, working from home, working from a coffee shop. I have external monitors at work and home and a laptop stand for working on the road for posture. If you are in one location I agree that you don't need a laptop.


Use a laptop like a desktop (mouse, monitor, keyboard) and you lose most of the drawbacks. The benefit is sacrificing a little power for portability. Ability to take laptops to meetings, to move demos around, to be able to hot desk, to work from home, to be able to work during travel. The price saving and the extra power aren't worth those benefits.


For most people it's probably the meetings. You sometimes want to show things to other people. For me working as a freelancer for different clients and often on site there is no other option.


Exactly my view. Especially the posture thing. So many people do it wrong, unfortunately.

With the extra money, you can also buy a previous generation laptop (maybe refurbished) and use an online IDE to do your heavy coding.


I recently just switched from a Dell XPS to a Surface Pro 7, and the Surface has been the best laptop experience I've had let alone dev experience! That last statement is really subjective, I know. Before my XPS I was using thick gaming laptops, which was not fun to carry around, and wouldn't last very long at all on battery.

I really like how integrated the touch experience is on the surface pro, and I ended up getting a pen to go with it, so it makes it super easy to sketch out code designs and write out notes (I tend to be able to remember and think better when I can scrawl my notes down rather than typing). It's been great not having to carry around a paper notebook.

I should also note that I'm in school right now, so some of the benefits I've been seeing might be overblown for someone not in school who doesn't need to be taking notes all the time, but for me, it's been great. I've also noticed the battery life is a bit better than my previous XPS 13 was even when it was new.


I think you are on to something, I have an HP Spectre 360, and what baffled me was just how useful a touch screen and a pen could be at work. Being able to sketch out ideas on the go turned out to be incredibly valuable.

And the 4k monitor is not bad at all for programming (or any work) :P


Macbook pro 15" 2015.
Why not buy newer? The crappy keyboard.

The 2015 macbooks have awesome keyboard, years of great battery life, 16gb RAM and (surprisingly) 256Gb disk is fair enough for dev.

I'm mostly frontend dev but also running local environments with virtual machines and i feel near-zero lags.


Macbook Pro (even with the butterfly keyboard) has been my go-to choice for dev laptop. I'm getting the 16-inch version with a new keyboard soon so I'm fascinated to test it.


Niko, It would be nice to hear about your experience.

The new keyboard is a very good reason to upgrade. My only complaint so far with the new keyboard is its Touch Bar occasionally going blank. A reboot fixes it though, so probably not a hardware fault.


I don't know, I kinda like the butterfly keyboard and the laptop in general.
I used to hate Mac until I bought the 2017 MacBook Pro and I fell in love with it.


The new MacBook Pro 16" fixes the crappy Keyboard Problems. So if you want to update, now you're free to go. :)


Great laptop to begin with. However Apple just revealed the new 16' macbook pro with a scissors style keyboard and as they say is just perfect. I am thinking to replace my 2016 13' macbook Pro.


Macbook Pro :)

The main reason is honestly the trackpad. When working outside the office I prefer not not carry a mouse, so a good trackpad is a must. I haven't found any other laptop that even comes close.

My main comparison is a Windows laptop from my work (Lenovo Carbon X1) so this may not apply to all other laptops.


XPS 13 9380 running Ubuntu 19.10. It's a great platform for desktop and laptop dev and ops. Light, fast, and functional. I use the Dell Thunderbolt dock- which was a bit flaky up until the latest FW upgrade. As of now, it drives a 4k monitor, charges the laptop, and provides full USB connectvity. I've been very happy with the platform.


Thinkpad T&X Series.

I love theirs keyboards and touchpad. I'm not a big fan of trackpoint but you can use it for navigate a file easily with it. Thinkpad have a great battery life. Also, their are robust as tanks! I bought a x230T years ago and i think i'll use it for a couple of years more.


I was surprised nobody mentioned it before, but I love coding on the Razer Blade 15. It's portable as a macbook pro, blazing fast, it has a great (and cool as f) keyboard and you can also game on it when work's done. I have been travelling and working on the go for the past few months so I had to leave my desktop behind, but I don't feel any compromises with the blade. The only thing I miss is the dual monitors, but I just found out there are some good portable screens for cheap on amazon so I'll grab one soon and check it out.


Macbook Pro
As a web developer, windows is not my suitable os for development. Although I use ubuntu, I still need to use Adobe Products. So, the best choice for me is macbook pro.


How is Windows not suitable for web development? I know it's subjective, but I'd like to know arguments 🙂


The main reason is SSH connection. I don't wanna use putty or wsl. And I have faced troubles in various project concerning directory separator "/" and "\". I don't feel good using default cmd or console2 and even new terminal.
But it is just my personal feeling. I love windows, not for development.

Now on windows ssh is native ( on home edition is a single checkbox ) ; powershell not so bad ( lack a little for themes). I use both Linux and windows, so I’m not a fanboy

ssh on WSL is fine. WSL itself is pointless in my opinion, but ssh is fine.

Never used WSL infact. I’m saying natively, not with WSL


I use three (Windows, Mac and Linux) and Windows require way more setup like avoid CRLF end of line char, swapping between consoles. i.e. I use Git Bash for git operations, PowerShell to run docker commands and WSL for kubernetes commands (I tried to use only one but seems like it requires more tricks). This means different ways to copy and paste, different scripts for automation of tasks and different profile directories. I use Windows because I have to. I wouldn't say "is not suitable for web development" but definitely Mac and Linux and more developer friendly.


Thinkpad T-Series: Trackpoint mouse, matte screen, and upgradable.

That said, I'll be honest and say that the surprisingly nice, cheap and cheerful 11" Acer Spin 1 that my wife picked up a couple months ago has me questioning my long-held Thinkpad obsession. As opposed to compromising with the laptop form factor, one day I may switch to an inexpensive ultra-portable (Pentium Silver processor, FHD screen, half-day battery), plus a formidable desktop configured for power and ergonomics.


I would recommend the MacBook Pro I use for work, because it's pretty good for the most part - the keyboard's not as bad as people make out - but I can't in all honesty say it's a reliable machine or as good for development as a Linux box. MacOS is, shall we say... "whimsical" at best.

The new Thinkpad "carbon" laptops are pretty nice from what I've seen.

My favourite is what I use most, which is a 2011 Thinkpad brick. I don't need to take it anywhere and it keeps my knees warm on the sofa.


Mine so far has been a MacBook Pro, however, my variety only ranges from my windows 10 desktop PC to a MacBook Pro. Nothing substantial really pulling me in my direction other than I feel like I need less faffing around and config for setting up web dev stuff on a new Mac.

I've always wanted to give the XPS series or any other affordable powerful windows machines a try since windows has been moving in a good direction for development.


I'm using a Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition (Ubuntu 18.04) since March 2017 and I'm globally satisfied. But, I'm disappointed by the lack of compatibility for Linux and Dell Accessories.

I switched to Ubuntu in 2015 when my last MacBook Pro died. I was totally satisfied with my MacBook Pro but I had just quit my job and I didn't want to spent all my savings on a new MacBook Pro so I took an old laptop from my sister, put my MacBook RAM and SSD on it and install Ubuntu. I used it for about 6 months and then I bought a Desktop and install Ubuntu on it.

I'm currently thinking of switching back to Apple. Linux is great for Developers but lacks of compatible accessories and I want a more polyvalent Laptop.

By the way, I hate Windows for Development. The only reason why I could use Windows to Develop is if I'm working with dotNET.


ThinkPad X1 Carbon with Fedora on it. ThinkPads were in my mind the only laptops comparable or even better than Macbooks. They have decent touchbar (Macbook is better here), trackpoint (unique feature helping you avoid mouse and carpal tunnel syndrome), specs (they fixed the sound now, but still lacking in graphic cards), and probably the best build (better alloy than just aluminum in Macbooks + you can fully open your lid). On top of this it's important that most things works in Linux and since most of Red Hat runs on ThinkPads the corner cases get usually polished over time.


For work I have a 15" 2018 MacBook Pro which is okay I guess. I work remotely from my home office and am docked almost all the time. I haven't had any keyboard issues but I guess I'm just underwhelmed with the OS for development. I'd much prefer a pure Linux environment since that more closely mirrors our deployment targets.

For personal stuff I recently got a Dell XPS 13 9380 from their outlet store and it's been wonderful. I had to jump through a few hurdles to get Linux on it but I've been running ArchLinux on it now for a month or two and it's been terrific.


My whole office once bought a host of top of the line Surface Pro's against my recommendation of the Dell XPS. Most were decommissioned in the first year, by the 2nd year they were all gone in favor of the XPS.

Surface is the worst possible choice, there is nothing "pro" about them. They are under performant, unpredictably throttling, works with no monitors, flimsy and they become very quickly dependant on their power cable.

My point is, anything other than Surface! I've had my personal XPS for 5 years it's it's only now starting to show it's age. It's a fantastic machine. Light, powerful, well made and decently priced.

I notice a trend of devs moving towards Mac but I simply hate the OS and the unbelievably stupid price for it and it's accessories.


I use a Macbook Pro and booting into Windows as I am working on WPF apps. This particular Macbook is from 2014 with 16GB of RAM and an i&. It is still nice, but now it is time to upgrade to something stronger. I am looking at the 16-inch Macbook but I find it very expensive at the moment


I am typing this from a late 2008 unibody Macbook (been coding on it since I started learning programming 5 years ago). I even run Docker Toolbox. It is obviously time to upgrade, but you get the idea. Macs are great. Even this old one gives me a chance to balance between coding and ocassional design (I use Affinity Designer a lot) and when it comes time to develop, the setup is so so simple to get started, with brew and all other tools.

I will always recommend a Macbook. Even if you are on a budget, I have heard people say nice things about the 2013/2014 15'' Retina Macbook Pros. Get a used one in good condition and it will serve you way more than 4 years to come.


I love the 14 inch dell latitudes. they have great keyboard, size, power and IO. I love mine


I actually use an HP pavilion x360 and so far I'm really happy with it's performance, not so much with the battery that only last like 5 to 6 hours, but it's a really nice laptop in general with a touchscreen and a pen to take notes and so on.


At home i work on a crappy Lenovo ideapad 500 running ubuntu 19.10. Next week I'm getting a MacBook Pro 13. I like Ubuntu but I feel like MacOs is more polished overall (I use a MacMini at the office)


We've got all flavours at home, but since the question relates to Laptops:
You'll see why I'm replying to Alberto M's post soon

I've got a Dual boot 17" LG doing nothing on a shelf. I won't be installing Linux on it, my experience with Slackware is that it is too alien in regards to left right mouse usage for this old dinosaur ( began with TRS-80's and Sinclair ZX's ) to adjust his muscle memory.

I use a 2012 MacBook Air for emails, general browsing, taking 3D visualisations in Sketchup/Blender to clients, and as a soundfont player when out and about with my (music) keyboard. Original battery, and still keeps 2 hours charge. Seven keys are unreadable after fingernail wear, the casing is warped and bent and scratched to blazes after hard and long use but this thing will outlive me.

The main coding machine (with the files the apps require in VectorGraphics, 3D Modelling & Video Editing) is done on a 2015 MacBook Pro. The main reason is it has FireWire input from some delicious old Video gear, I can't justify re-spending to latest specs.

When I eventually do it will be to a Mac Mini, mainly for ergonomics and clutter freedom on my physical desk. In the same vein I already use a Skull Canyon NUC for my audio Assets, so I do all my music production there, only because I have it anyway. If it dies I'll go back to the Mac ecosystem, I don't like certain things about WIN, but I'm no hater.

I find some separation of concerns regarding which realm I'm working in to be of advantage. If I need to export a file for other machine use there are easy OTA options.


My favorite was... HP Elitebook 820 G1, 12in size. Super portable, awesome trackpad, plenty of power in a tiny package... but old enough that updated video drivers are not available and VS2017 crashes randomly on it (a real problem as windows-centric developer).

I have an XPS (13in), MacBook (13in) and Inspiron (14in) available to me, but none have the combination of low weight and power that my old HP had - and only the MacBook has as good of a trackpad.

I'll keep looking.


Love my Dell XPS 9570. I've ran VMs, done 3D modelling, animation and all sorts of extensive tasks and it doesn't sweat. Love the display plus it has a nice trackpad. It's nice material to rest your hand against too.


I'm working with a Dell G7 7588 running Pop_OS! right now with really great performance. I work mainly with ruby, python, netcore and js with some VMs for windows-only projects and this laptop either with windows or linux has excelent performance.


It depends on what your company gives you.

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