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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:04 AM   #1
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Job Postings and Patent Acquisitions Hint at Potential Overhaul of iLife and iWork




Several clues surfacing in recent days have hinted that Apple's iWork and iLife suites may be undergoing substantial redevelopment.

Late last week, Apple Bitch noticed two new job listings for senior software engineers for the company's iLife team, with the descriptions emphasizing a desire to "re-imagine how user interfaces should be built and work". MacNN followed up with its own reporting pointing to a number of other job postings for both the iLife and iWork teams suggesting that Apple is making significant additions to its teams.
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Apple has recently added several job postings that explicitly reference the iLife team or the suite itself, including requests for an engineer in the iLife Frameworks QA department; a QA engineer to help test new features in iPhoto (that requires a "passion" for digital photography); a Senior User Interface Designer for iWork, and two Senior Software Engineer positions that explicitly reference working on the user interface of iLife.
Apple's iWork productivity suite, which includes Pages, Numbers and Keynote, last received minor updates in December, while the last major update came over four years ago. iLife represents Apple's consumer apps (iPhoto, GarageBand and iMovie) and saw its last major update in October 2010.

Apple has also been active in the area of document management and the cloud, acquiring 18 patents addressing information management from Maya-Systems.
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a file sorting system that can reorganize according to time, category, or a common theme -- such as a work project -- and sync with cloud servers and other users
New senior hires and patent acquisition may point to a major redevelopment of the software, but as new hires are typically done early in the development cycle, it may be some time before the fruits of such work are released to the public.

It is also likely that the new versions of iLife and iWork would lose the skeuomorphisms - emulation of real-life objects and materials like desk calendars, leather and wood. There have long been tensions within Apple over this approach, but with skeuomorphism proponent Scott Forstall being forced out of Apple and Jonathan Ive having now assumed responsibility for Human Interface aspects of software as well as hardware design, a new design direction for Apple's software may be in progress.

Article Link: Job Postings and Patent Acquisitions Hint at Potential Overhaul of iLife and iWork
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:06 AM   #2
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About time!
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 04:50 AM   #3
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About frikkin time.

Pages is nice and certainly a very capable word processor. But I would forgive Apple if they were to sacrifice a little bit of simplicity for the sake of bolstering Pages to be more "feature rich" application.... thus closing the gap with MS Word.

Accomplishing this (closing the gap with MS Word) would actually give many people a reason to stop looking back at Microsoft Word any more, and this would include many PC-to-Mac 'Switchers' I know of.

----------

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Originally Posted by Michael Scrip View Post
Aren't there like 3,000 people working at the Cupertino campus?

Just curious what the majority of job titles are at Apple if they're not heavily focused on engineers and designers.
There are tons of employees at Apple in software development positions. What is unclear with these "job postings" is whether they were posted to the open public, or if these were internal postings so that existing Apple employees could transfer/apply to the job openings laterally.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 06:27 AM   #4
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Some aspects of skeuomorphism are not terribly evident—thank goodness—and it took me some time to realise the brown bit at the top of Calendar had paper tear offs underneath.

The one app where skeuomorphism really annoys me is the Game Centre which (maybe because I am a European) I find really creepy, so I never use it.

The only app I think should keep elements of skeuomorphism is the Calculator, otherwise long live a clean modern design.
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Old Feb 11, 2013, 03:53 AM   #5
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Some aspects of skeuomorphism are not terribly evident—thank goodness—and it took me some time to realise the brown bit at the top of Calendar had paper tear offs underneath.
Subtle skeumorphism is fine with me. As long as it's not an "in-your-face" glaring skeumorphic fashion statement, I don't mind it at all.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:06 AM   #6
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At least 64-bit please.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:11 AM   #7
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skeuomorphism and the aesthetics is one thing but what exactly has stopped them from having numbers as usable and competent application?

its got some nice drag and drop solutions but when it comes to actual work i will go to openoffice/libreoffice and google docs every time.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:20 AM   #8
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skeuomorphism and the aesthetics is one thing but what exactly has stopped them from having numbers as usable and competent application?

its got some nice drag and drop solutions but when it comes to actual work i will go to openoffice/libreoffice and google docs every time.
what's missing from numbers that you need?

i get plenty of actual work done in it.

it doesn't try to be 1-1 in features with excel as open/libreoffice are because that was their goal, apples was to replace appleworks and heavily influenced by the suit of apps steve liked that was available on NeXT (and Sun bought and buried).

there are some things that are not optimal but i generally find a way to get around it by rethinking my approach.

since i've decided to stay on SL i wouldn't any any iwork update anyway. even the dec minor updates won't run.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:24 AM   #9
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Pages works pretty slow for me, in both 32 and 64 bits.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:28 AM   #10
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Pages works pretty slow for me, in both 32 and 64 bits.
How are you getting Pages to work in 64-bit? It's only a 32-bit app.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 11:01 AM   #11
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Numbers certainly needs an overhaul but five or six years ago when development started on this version I believe they achieved their goal which was a simple spread sheet app. Today things are far different, people do more with their Macs and thus a more professional Numbers is required.

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Originally Posted by numlock View Post
skeuomorphism and the aesthetics is one thing but what exactly has stopped them from having numbers as usable and competent application?

its got some nice drag and drop solutions but when it comes to actual work i will go to openoffice/libreoffice and google docs every time.
Personally I hate OpenOffice but that is me. I'm really looking forward to a version of Numbers with a built in scripting language like Python. Numbers needs a lot of work when it comes to imports and exports. Frankly I'd like to see a version of Numbers that can easily turn a range of cells into HTML.
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Old Feb 6, 2013, 05:59 AM   #12
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Numbers certainly needs an overhaul but five or six years ago when development started on this version I believe they achieved their goal which was a simple spread sheet app. Today things are far different, people do more with their Macs and thus a more professional Numbers is required.


Personally I hate OpenOffice but that is me. I'm really looking forward to a version of Numbers with a built in scripting language like Python. Numbers needs a lot of work when it comes to imports and exports. Frankly I'd like to see a version of Numbers that can easily turn a range of cells into HTML.
well my mention of openoffice/libreoffice was because if you dont have or want to use ms office its the closest thing available.

and if google sheets would have better support for different localization i could use google sheets for most of my needs.

numbers as you say started out fine but very little has been done with it. but pivot tables and freeze cells those are still not available right?

i dont use enough formulas to know if its lacking there.

there is a little application called tables that one could argue has surpassed numbers.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:11 AM   #13
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Let's hope this overhaul means bigger buttons and missing features!

On a serious note, I bloody love those icons for some reason.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:11 AM   #14
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Long overdue.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:12 AM   #15
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I hope they make some significant performance improvements to iMovie and Garageband. Things like better use of the CPU power to more quickly render projects and in iMovie, the interface response is rather slow. When I click on a project, I have to wait or click a second time to get the app to respond. No other app I have acts like iMovie.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:14 AM   #16
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Finally!

It's getting embarrassing loading up a brand new laptop and having to put er, iLife 2011 on it. Or even iWork 2009.

'Why are you putting that old stuff on it?'

'It's Apple's newest stuff! I swear!'

The basic functionality of the apps is OK but they need some tweaking and be a bit more collaboration / internet aware. iPhoto especially starts like a dog.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:15 AM   #17
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Just sort out iPhoto and most people would be happy.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 11:33 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by HenryDJP View Post
Well I do use it. Pages only though. I can tell you first hand that Pages is fantastic in regards to creating flyers, posters and banners for my insurance office. I would just like Apple to offer more templates. MS Word on the other hand is hardly used much past typing letters and office publications. This has been the same for every company I've worked for.
I agree with you and others that iWork needs a serious upgrade and I'm disappointed that Apple has ignored it so much but I do think you're showing more hate than necessary. I don't think people love MS Office that much. It's just that as an industry we're stuck with it because MS has a monopoly.
+1. Considering the price ($19.99) pages has a much higher value for money than MS Word ($300).
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:40 AM   #19
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At least 64-bit please.
Why? It wouldn't be faster you know.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 09:41 AM   #20
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a file sorting system that can reorganize according to time, category, or a common theme -- such as a work project -- and sync with cloud servers and other users
Uh oh. More of Apple's clumsy attacks on the file system coming?
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:05 AM   #21
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Why? It wouldn't be faster you know.
iPhoto certainly will, I have also Arperture (64-bit) which is a bigger app but it loads much faster dan iPhoto.

Apple should have all there apps in 64bit. 32bit is so yesterday.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 11:10 AM   #22
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Why? It wouldn't be faster you know.
Actually it could be faster. This is the odd thing about i86 hardware going 64 bit opens up more hardware features than going 64 bit on other platforms. As such some apps can leverage the 64 bit Intel hardware for significantly Improved performance. Beyond that you eliminate the issue of working within a 32 bit address space.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:09 AM   #23
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At least 64-bit please.
I do realize that iWork is a little on the slow side but I use iMovie all the time and never noticed any performance hits. That being said Steve Jobs (before deceased) should have been embarrassed that iLife wasn't 64-bit since he touted OS X being 64-bit so often. I didn't even know this until I checked Activity Monitor.
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Old Feb 4, 2013, 10:19 AM   #24
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I do realize that iWork is a little on the slow side but I use iMovie all the time and never noticed any performance hits. That being said Steve Jobs (before deceased) should have been embarrassed that iLife wasn't 64-bit since he touted OS X being 64-bit so often. I didn't even know this until I checked Activity Monitor.
Right, Apple should make an statement (by having all their own apps 64-bit) to all the software developers still working with 32-bit code. 64-bit is really faster, for some apps hardly noticeable but for other there is a big difference. 64-Bit Arperture is much faster than 32-bit iPhoto.
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Old Feb 5, 2013, 03:00 PM   #25
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Right, Apple should make an statement (by having all their own apps 64-bit) to all the software developers still working with 32-bit code. 64-bit is really faster, for some apps hardly noticeable but for other there is a big difference. 64-Bit Arperture is much faster than 32-bit iPhoto.
I don't know if 64 bit in of itself would be faster. But being 64 bit would have access to more then 4GB of RAM. The reasons why Aperture might be faster if it is written for multicore processors and graphic card acceleration.
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