I know this may seem stupid, but I am attending Grant MacEwan in September and I tried to go on the website and then my web advisor and Safari says it cannot be accessed. The problem was that I think it is because it is not compatible with Mac although before I bought my laptop I made sure that an ibook with 10.4 was compatible and triple checked it on their website. It is also strange to think that a college such as Grant macEwan does not allow Mac's to enter their site?? Does anyone have any advice for me at all? I really hope that my laptop will be able to work with my future school or I might have to think about refunding it for a PC...NO!!!!
Lots of organizations explicity do not support Macs
It wouldn't surprise me in the least if Grant MacEwan is Mac-hostile. Lots of organizations, especially colleges and small universities, have limited IT people, and those people tend to be the least flexible and adaptive sorts.
The amusing thing is that these places are the ones that would benefit the most from having more students use Macs.
I've found several Web sites that refuse to let you in unless you're running MSIE under Windows (and yes, a website can ask the browser to report the OS). One of these was the Government of Alberta's Student Loans office.
The reason they give for this anti-Mac prejudice is that they don't want to develop their Web-pages to support multiple browsers, so they simply support the most common one. Ironically, if you set Safari to disguise itself as MSIE running under Window, these sites work just fine, so there is no reason they couldn't be allowing Mac users in. But apparently they don't want to face the possibility that things are changing.
Try setting your browser's user agent to 'Windows MSIE 6.0' and revisiting the web site. Then, when it works, send them a comment asking why you were locked out when using a standards-compliant browser when it is demonstrably unnecessary, because the website works fine with Macs as long as they claim to be Windows.
Regarding your bigger question of 'should I trade in my iBook for a PC in order to make Grant MacEwan's IT department happier?' the answer depends on you. If you're concerned about towing the line and giving the IT people who are supposed to be working for you the power to control how you spend your personal money, I guess the answer is yes. If, however, you want to spend you money on high quality hardware and software, and are willing to deal with the occasional hassle from ignorant IT people who think (incorrectly) "Macs aren't compatible", then keep your iBook and start educating the people around you to help reduce the frequency with which this sort of thing crops up.
If people make standards compliant web pages, then it won't matter what OS anyone uses. It's only when Microsoft's famous strategy of Embrace-Extend-Exterminate is allowed to succeed, that everyone is forced to buy their wretched software. The tide has turned against MS (and even they know it), but there is still a long way to go, especially in technological backwaters like community colleges.
Good luck Newandwondering, and feel free to call on the internet Mac community for help when you need it.
My wife is an alumna of GMCC. I used Safari Extender as suggested and got her to write them a nasty note on their contact mailbox. Colleges usually listen to their alumnae more readily than to the general public.
__________________ "I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody."
- Bill Cosby