What Is The Apple Desktop?
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What is the Apple Desktop?

There are actually two answers to this question. The short answers are:

1) An all-in-one computer you keep on your desk.

2) Your virtual workspace in OS X.

It kind of surprised me to learn that this was a common question typed into Google. And, as I looked at the variety of pages in the search results, I wondered if people were actually getting the answer they were looking for.

Especially since there are a couple answers to this ambiguous question.

So, I'm going to expand on those two short answers I gave above with two medium-length answers. And then I'll provide you with links to longer answers to each of the two, in case you're more than just a little curious.

Let me rephrase the question for each answer…

What is the Apple Desktop on Mac OS X?

Apple's Mac Operating System (OS) was designed to be a metaphor for what it would be like to work at your desk in an office. This was supposed to make the strange new thing called the "personal computer" a little more personal and familiar.

That's why a lot of office terms like "desktop", “files”, “documents", and “folders” are used to describe the stuff you keep on your Mac (like your pictures, letters, videos, etc.) and how you use it.

When working at a desk in your office or at home, all your papers and writing and work is done on top of the desk. On the desktop.

So, just like when working at a desk, the screen where all your work is done in OS X is called the "desktop". It's the base-level above which everything floats. The window views, little icons, and everything all sit on, or float above, the Desktop.

The Desktop is often confused with the Finder, which is the program you use on the Mac to find all those files and folders I mentioned.

What is the Apple Desktop Computer?

The term "desktop" refers to the traditional design for a personal computer that sits on your desk. It came about to differentiate the traditional personal computers from the new portable computers designed to use anywhere, and even fit on your lap (laptops).

Apple's flagship desktop computer, the iMac is designed as an all-in-one computer solution. The monitor, hard drive, and computer chips are all encased in one piece (see the picture above) and sits on your desk.

The iMac broke away from the traditional, "modular" design of desktop personal computers where the computer chips and hard drive were encased in one unit, while the monitor was separate.

Apple makes another computer at the professional level called the "Mac Pro". It's not an "all-in-one" computer, and doesn't come with a screen. It would be part of a modular system, and doesn't need to be placed on your tabletop or desktop to use it. It can be placed on the floor, or on a shelf to save space on your desk.

More Information

If you want more information about using the Finder in Mac OS X, the better question for your Google search might be "What is the Mac Desktop?"

If you want to find out more about Apple's desktop computers, you should visit their main website and click on the "Mac" link at the top. If you're looking to buy one at a discount, you should be able to find a Mac computers sale easily online.

Did this article answer your question? Or was there something else you were looking for? If you have something to add, want to expand on the question of "what is the Apple Desktop", please leave a comment below, and I'll be sure to respond.


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