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Microsoft strikes at Apple's art

Technically Incorrect: A new ad for the Microsoft Surface Book features a photographer saying there are many -- well, at least two -- things he can do on the machine that he can't on a Mac.

Technically Incorrect offers a slightly twisted take on the tech that's taken over our lives.


Just look at that saliva.

Microsoft/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

It used to be that any self-respecting creative person would look at a PC and emit a gruff guffaw.

What was that thing? Why would anyone use one?

It had the elegance of Donald Trump's vocabulary and the dexterity of Bernie Sanders in heels.

Microsoft wants you to believe things have changed. It wants you, oh creative person, to revisit your priorities and reassess your prejudices.

It wants you to use a Surface Book.

In a new ad, wildlife photographer Tim Flach insists the Surface Book gives him better resolution. He gushes over the detail of a slobbering tiger's saliva.

He uses the Surface Book's pen directly on an image. And it all builds up to one killer line: "I can't do that on my Mac."

Perhaps he could try the iPad Pro?

No, that's a silly thing to say. The iPad Pro is just Apple's way of catching up to the Surface, isn't it?

The message here is that you can do more with the Surface Book than you can with a Mac.

The ad follows another set of ads that subtly implied Windows 10 computers did more than Macs too.

When I say "subtly," I mean that one of the protagonists kept offering dialogue about what she couldn't do on a Mac. Sample: "I don't have a touchscreen on my Mac."

Microsoft clearly intends to reverse the idea that creative people should only use Macs.

Creative people have strange, delicate egos, though.

The challenge isn't just getting them to stop using Macs. It's getting them to stop being seen with Macs, their de rigueur accessories.

That will be a little harder.