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MacBytes
May 5, 2005, 12:18 AM
http://www.macbytes.com/images/bytessig.gif (http://www.macbytes.com)

Category: Apple Software
Link: Tiger: the death of helper applications (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20050505011843)

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
Approved by Mudbug

840quadra
May 5, 2005, 12:35 AM
Good read,

I found most of the information to be true in many ways except the following.

Think about it: why should you have to go to the Finder before you can perform a search of your hard drive? The Finder is designed to help you navigate to files and folders whose location you're already aware of. Why should you also have to go to the Finder to search for files whose locations you don't know?

Most of us will still use the finder for simple file copies, or renaming of files and folders. Granted you CAN do with with Automater, but most of us will take 30 to 50 seconds less time simply navigating in the finder to take care of these 10 second tasks.

ham_man
May 5, 2005, 12:41 AM
That was a very well articulated article. I think that that guy is right - Mac OS X is intergrating everything like never before. I like it when I have to mess with less apps. Just means less stuff to break, which I can manage to do even on a Mac...:rolleyes:

narco
May 5, 2005, 12:48 AM
I use a lot of PDFs, so when I saw that a PDF was readable through Safari I was extremely happy. Same when I downloaded a program and it unstuffed and mounted by itself -- it's those little things that made Tiger so amazing to me. Now that I have been working with Tiger rather than looking at all the cool new features, I've notice what a solid upgrade this is. Thank you, Apple.

Fishes,
narco.

mkrishnan
May 5, 2005, 12:56 AM
I wanted to put the question at the top :D so as not to get sidetracked...this raised something that's been bugging me.... How is it that if I download a .sit file using Safari, it will unstuff and mount for me, but if I double-click a StuffIt file, I have no suitable application? :confused: Is there an application I can pick? (Other than d/l'ing StuffIt Expander again :rolleyes: ) Should I pick Safari?

Same when I downloaded a program and it unstuffed and mounted by itself -- it's those little things that made Tiger so amazing to me. Now that I have been working with Tiger rather than looking at all the cool new features, I've notice what a solid upgrade this is. Thank you, Apple.

I agree wholeheartedly that this is nice, but its also a double-edged sword. Granted that the way Apple implements it is better than MS, and that the Apple world is blissfully free of virii, but this sort of automation in the Windows world is exactly what allowed adware and spyware to explode, isn't it?

OhEsTen
May 5, 2005, 01:04 AM
It all makes perfect sense. However I can see how some might cry fowl (the way some did about the whole Dashboard/Konfabulator nonsense). If Apple intigrates these "mundane" functionalities into OSX I think it would be fantastic and better for the end user - but how many "widget" makers would get pissed and accuse Apple of being a monopoly for doing so?

In the long run, I hope that this kind of integration continues.

Some_Big_Spoon
May 5, 2005, 01:13 AM
Well, theoretically these are executables (apps) that would require user authentication to install and run. Windows runs in root by default, whereas OSX understands that root isn't necessary for 99.999% of people, and those that need it, can get it with a little tinkering.

While the virus or spyware (knock on wood) could be automatically unstuffed and mounted, it wouldn't install without the express consent of the user. As always, the weakest link in computer security is the end user.

I wanted to put the question at the top :D so as not to get sidetracked...this raised something that's been bugging me.... How is it that if I download a .sit file using Safari, it will unstuff and mount for me, but if I double-click a StuffIt file, I have no suitable application? :confused: Is there an application I can pick? (Other than d/l'ing StuffIt Expander again :rolleyes: ) Should I pick Safari?



I agree wholeheartedly that this is nice, but its also a double-edged sword. Granted that the way Apple implements it is better than MS, and that the Apple world is blissfully free of virii, but this sort of automation in the Windows world is exactly what allowed adware and spyware to explode, isn't it?

mkrishnan
May 5, 2005, 01:13 AM
It all makes perfect sense. However I can see how some might cry fowl (the way some did about the whole Dashboard/Konfabulator nonsense). If Apple intigrates these "mundane" functionalities into OSX I think it would be fantastic and better for the end user - but how many "widget" makers would get pissed and accuse Apple of being a monopoly for doing so?

In the long run, I hope that this kind of integration continues.

I felt the same way *puts flame suit on* when these kinds of accusations were levied against MS. I would just as soon not have to install any third-party utilities. My whole philosophy is to install as little software as possible. :)

840quadra
May 5, 2005, 01:38 AM
Well, theoretically these are executables (apps) that would require user authentication to install and run. Windows runs in root by default, whereas OSX understands that root isn't necessary for 99.999% of people, and those that need it, can get it with a little tinkering.

While the virus or spyware (knock on wood) could be automatically unstuffed and mounted, it wouldn't install without the express consent of the user. As always, the weakest link in computer security is the end user.


That is a good point, if the file is mounted it would not kick off by itself, unless somehow an other program was looking for it to kick it off automagicly, and giving it root rights.

I can see it dangerous for people that download and install without thinking, But the OS still has some counter measures to prevent applications from exploding into the OS.

nagromme
May 5, 2005, 01:50 AM
"the Finder reached near-perfection with the release of Panther"

Now that might be overstating things a bit ;)

(I do like Panther's Finder enhancements though.)

mkrishnan
May 5, 2005, 05:05 AM
"the Finder reached near-perfection with the release of Panther"

Now that might be overstating things a bit ;)

(I do like Panther's Finder enhancements though.)

LOL, that's like saying that Windows has "a few" viruses, or that "every program you could want to use has a Mac version that is just as good." :D

It all depends on how you look at it, though...Panther Finder is good, although there are small tweaks I would like (is it not sooo obvious, that when you have the splendor of spring-loaded folders, it would be nice to have a spring loading that would get you to the PARENT DIRECTORY easily???? Oh, and can we please offer a way to keep directories organized so that folders are first or last in the list, if so desired, without hacking? :D). Just minor things, really. :)

I still would like to know, though, about this Stuffit question. This has me baffled. Maybe I *should* try nominating Safari as my default stuffit handler and see what happens.

nagromme
May 5, 2005, 05:26 AM
In Open With is there an app called "BOMarchivehelper"?

I know that will extract zips in Panther. Maybe the same app extracts rars and sits and who knows what all in Tiger.

Trying to Find it doesn't work... it's hidden someplace in System I suppose.

But I bet that's the app you're after. (Or graphical shell for a UNIX app, or whatever the heck it is.)

Mitthrawnuruodo
May 5, 2005, 05:26 AM
Well, we had a thread on this subject just before Tiger was released, and just as I thought, I've kept Meterologist, wClock and XRG, and I have limited use for Dasboard... Spotlight is faster than the old Find (which for some reason is still there), and I've always been happy with the dock, so I've never installed any 3rd party search and/or launch application...

But where is the html editor which was supposed to come with Tiger (developer tools)...?

mad jew
May 5, 2005, 05:32 AM
old Find (which for some reason is still there)


That'd be for old computer-illiterate people like my Dad who really aren't all that good at catching up with technology. :rolleyes:

He still does everything the old way. He even found the OS9 preferences on his eMac and rebuilds the desktop once a week despite it having nothing to do with OSX and him never using Classic mode anyway! He says that his Mac works flawlessly when he rebuilds, which is true but unrelated. Crazy old man! But we love him. :D

Mitthrawnuruodo
May 5, 2005, 06:03 AM
That'd be for old computer-illiterate people like my Dad who really aren't all that good at catching up with technology. :rolleyes: I understand the need for that, but why didn't they just point cmd-F/Finder: File->Find... to the Spotlight Show All window...???

MacBandit
May 5, 2005, 09:24 AM
What's interesting is I didn't even notice the integration of PDF and Stuffit as I've been using a PDF Browser Plug-in (http://www.schubert-it.com/pluginpdf/) since early after Jaguar was released. The same people make a word doc plug-in for safari. Also before I even used Tiger I went ahead and downloaded stuffit expander.

wrldwzrd89
May 5, 2005, 09:45 AM
In Open With is there an app called "BOMarchivehelper"?

I know that will extract zips in Panther. Maybe the same app extracts rars and sits and who knows what all in Tiger.

Trying to Find it doesn't work... it's hidden someplace in System I suppose.

But I bet that's the app you're after. (Or graphical shell for a UNIX app, or whatever the heck it is.)
BOMArchiveHelper is easy to find if you know where to look:

/System/Library/CoreServices/BOMArchiveHelper.app

It handles ZIP, TAR, and GZ (Gnu zip) perfectly. I tested it on a RAR file - all it did was extract it to a CPGZ file. Extracting again produced another RAR file. I think this is BOMArchiveHelper's way of telling us it doesn't support this archive type. I've yet to test SIT (which I doubt will work) an BZ2 (which I suspect WILL work).

shamino
May 5, 2005, 10:23 AM
The article makes a very interesting observation. But it's not unique to MacOS.

You can find plenty of examples in the Windows world as well where features that formerly required helper applications were integrated with other apps and eventually into the OS itself.

For instance, image viewers. How many people remember needing standalone applications in order to view GIF/JPG files? Eventually, this ability was integrated into the system - as a part of web browsers, as a part of generic file-viewer applications, and eventually into the desktop itself. (Windows XP, like MacOS X, allows you to view a folder of image files as a window full of thumbnails.)

USB is another example. When it was first supported by Windows (Win98), you needed to install a device driver for every USB device you attached. Today, generic drivers are included for almost everything you're likely to hook up. So users rarely, if ever, even know that the drivers exist. (Of course, Macs always shipped with a robust collection of generic USB drivers, so Mac users never experienced those early stages.)

The ironic thing is that when Microsoft integrates components (like combining Internet Explorer with the desktop or using Media Player all over the place), people scream "unfair" and "monopoly". But when Apple integrates components, people applaud them. I'm not saying that either side is right or wrong, but it is an interesting observation.

billpalmer
May 5, 2005, 12:34 PM
The article makes a very interesting observation. But it's not unique to MacOS.

You can find plenty of examples in the Windows world as well where features that formerly required helper applications were integrated with other apps and eventually into the OS itself.

For instance, image viewers. How many people remember needing standalone applications in order to view GIF/JPG files? Eventually, this ability was integrated into the system - as a part of web browsers, as a part of generic file-viewer applications, and eventually into the desktop itself. (Windows XP, like MacOS X, allows you to view a folder of image files as a window full of thumbnails.)

USB is another example. When it was first supported by Windows (Win98), you needed to install a device driver for every USB device you attached. Today, generic drivers are included for almost everything you're likely to hook up. So users rarely, if ever, even know that the drivers exist. (Of course, Macs always shipped with a robust collection of generic USB drivers, so Mac users never experienced those early stages.)

The ironic thing is that when Microsoft integrates components (like combining Internet Explorer with the desktop or using Media Player all over the place), people scream "unfair" and "monopoly". But when Apple integrates components, people applaud them. I'm not saying that either side is right or wrong, but it is an interesting observation.

That's because when Microsoft does it, they do a crappy job of it.

shamino
May 5, 2005, 12:46 PM
That's because when Microsoft does it, they do a crappy job of it.
OK. So now I know you're one of those Apple-can-do-no-wrong and Microsoft-can-do-no-right zealots. I'll remember this when I read your next article.

Balin64
May 5, 2005, 01:53 PM
I actually have a couple of "helpers" I can't work without: KeyXing and ClearDock. I actually do not like anything cluttering up my System, but I just like these too mucg: I've been using KeyXing since the Jaguar days. I think that I will need to drop them for Tiger: I want to run a pristine and squeaky clean OS: besides, KeyXing is no longer developed, and I think I can get most of uts finctionality by using key assignments in System Preferences. As much as I love my transparent dock, I find that I use it less and less in my workflow: I do like to show it off, and the icons look so cool just floating in air...

Kerry Sanders
May 5, 2005, 02:27 PM
I thought this was a very well written article. He was not really bashing anything like you would hear Windows users doing about Microsoft doing when they include everything in the OS that is written by third-parties. I enjoyed the read.

johnnowak
May 5, 2005, 03:27 PM
Terrible article. Full of stuff Windows and Linux has had for ages, and stuff that just isn't true. (A program still has to launch to unstuff the file, even if you don't see a big ass window you bozo.) Pathetic overall.