Weblog:   Mac mini - the "just enough" computer
Subject:   256 MB of memory
Date:   2005-01-19 10:27:11
From:   k95dl01
I switched to an eMac last spring after one too many Windows crashes. Most of the time, I have Mail, Safari, TextWrangler, iTunes, TeXShop, Stata, and Terminal running.
I work with the Public Use Microdata files from the US Census, which are fairly large (1.19 GB in ASCII format) and am editing some fairly large TeX documents (one of them being my dissertation). I use Perl and shell scripts to manipulate data and then do most of the heavy statistical lifting in Stata once I have my samples selected.
I recently upgraded from the default 256 MB of RAM to 768 MB, but I didn't find system performance to be slow before, and I am not noticing much difference with three times the memory I used to have.
I don't know if this is anomalous, but the eMac out of the box last spring with 256 MB seemed far faster and more functional than the Windows PC I bought in Fall 2000.