Would you roll out Mac clones?

The nearly-phantom company Psystar has been getting a lot of attention lately as it claims to be selling fully compatible "Mac Clones." Obviously, their implementation is in clear violation of Apple's EULA and I can't imagine that much will come of this particular company once Apple sues it into oblivion.

The nearly-phantom company Psystar has been getting a lot of attention lately as it claims to be selling fully compatible "Mac Clones." Obviously, their implementation is in clear violation of Apple's EULA and I can't imagine that much will come of this particular company once Apple sues it into oblivion.

However, it raises an interesting question. If they were available without any dubious legality, would you roll out Mac clones? They never took off in any appreciable way years ago, but OS X is an entirely different beast, running on Intel-based hardware.

Has the time come for Mac clones? Those of us in ed tech are always looking for cheaper ways to give students access to solid software and hardware. While Macs are often out of our price range, a growing anti-Vista mentality means that we are also looking for alternatives in new hardware purchases. What if you could outfit a computer lab with whiteboxes running licensed, legal versions of OS X? Would you bother or would you just stick with Linux or Windows, two operating systems that are easily-licensed and installed on a wide variety of hardware?

Part of what makes a Mac a Mac is the hardware implementation. While OS X plays a big part in Mac's overall usability, as I type away right now on the brilliant MacBook keyboard, I wonder if I'd be anywhere near as satisfied typing on a standard ASUS or Quanta keyboard. Tell us what you think.

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