Mac users deserve equal e-mail access

I am writing in response to Britney McIntosh’s Aug. 31 article “Web portal continues to confound.” I too share the sentiment that the new portal is frustrating, but as a Mac user, it is even more so. UK recently migrated from uConnect to Microsoft Exchange, and this has proven nothing but a headache for me and my MacBook.

One UK official said in the article that “the new operating system was programmed primarily for the Firefox and Internet Explorer Web browsers.” This is true of myUK, which functions fine in both of those browsers, and, as Mac students can use Firefox, I can live without Safari while I check my schedule and register for classes.

However, Microsoft Exchange, while functioning on all three browsers, is only fully operational in Internet Explorer, which Microsoft lovingly discontinued for Macs in January 2006. So, while I can access my e-mail in both Safari and Firefox, I can only use Outlook Web Access Light, which has significantly fewer features. I cannot access the Tasks or Documents tabs. I also do not get the sleek framed Exchange that you get through Internet Explorer, but a simple, uConnect-like one instead.

I realize that it is a lot of work to keep any system operational on just one browser, let alone three, but is it really fair to the Mac students that we cannot enjoy the new e-mail system like everyone else? It’s true, I could forward my e-mail to Gmail as many students do, but I shouldn’t have to do so just to ensure that my e-mail client functions on my computer.

Mac students are students too. We pay the same tuition and fees as PC students, and yet we do not get the same privileges as PC students with regard to tech support for our native browser. Shouldn’t some of my tuition ensure that UK’s e-mail server work on my computer to its fullest potential? Any official site that UK has should operate equally in both Safari and Internet Explorer, but I just want to view my e-mail in Firefox as others can with IE.

Ryan O’Rourke

French and linguistics senior