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Old May 15, 2007, 10:21 AM   #1
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Apple's Leopard: End of the Desktop as We Know It?




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Old May 15, 2007, 10:42 AM   #2
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Before I read this I thought it was going to claim that I would no longer be able to save files on, or work from my desktop. I'm glad my knee-jerk stupidity wasn't alarm for concern.

I would like to see cleaner more intuitive interfaces become the wave of the future. In comparison, the framed windowed shell must be stunting to developer creativity. I'd like to hear what developers think.
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Old May 15, 2007, 10:51 AM   #3
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I wonder if we didnt get the first glipse of this with widgets.

The widget is "up front" and all your info is on the "back" press the "i" and it flips around.

We now see this on the iPhone as well with the new touch screen iPod interface. Play the album, flip it around to see all the tracks.
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Old May 15, 2007, 10:53 AM   #4
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The Macs I had in my gradeschool didn't use overlapping windows... Apple must have been really ahead of their time back then.
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Old May 15, 2007, 10:55 AM   #5
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The New UI

If only there was a way to have a single pane, yet with an intuitive reference to other, hidden, panes... some sort of, 'tabbed interface'...:

Last edited by Jodeo; May 15, 2007 at 10:56 AM. Reason: (no smiley)
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:04 AM   #6
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I liked this article. He brings up a lot of good points. I sure hope he's right. That would make me feel a little better.
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:04 AM   #7
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That sounds sensible, it totally explains the "secret features" thing too, which need to happen or Apple will look really silly.
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:07 AM   #8
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This article seems to be very speculative, and if they did manage to pull all that detail out of a delay of a few months, i will be very impressed.
However, i would be even more impressed if Apple pulled this off; it seems like a beautiful idea, cause even with my extensive use of keyboard shortcuts, i still find changing windows and referencing one thing from another a bit of a hassle (obviously not much of one, but it's just one of those things everybody has got used to). But I still have no vision of how they would manage it; with the appleTV, ipod and iphone it can be simple because it is dealing with simple things; everything can be simply categorised into "music", then "artists" then "album" then "song". But as soon as you start sharing files across more than one categorisation, it can all get a bit screwey...

We'll just have to wait till June and see what they pull out the bag. Can't wait!

p.s. Hope they add tabs to more applications (eg finder); it's the best idea since having a scroll ball instead of a wheel!
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:20 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jopling View Post
The Macs I had in my gradeschool didn't use overlapping windows... Apple must have been really ahead of their time back then.
It was called AtEase and it was, I think, I pain in the bum. I wish that the full screen coverflow could flip around the album art and show track listings like the iPhone.
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:33 AM   #10
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No overlapping windows? Wouldn't apple just be copying MS then. Non-Overlapping windows is SO Windows 1.0.
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Old May 15, 2007, 11:45 AM   #11
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Just a thought...

I can't stop myself from wondering if Apple is maybe implementing touchscreen technology in Leopard. Perhaps they see how smitten everyone is over the touchscreen technology in the iPhone, and are now rushing to get it in their principle OS. I read somewhere that the iPhone OS is a slimmed down version of Mac OS X, so getting it in Leopard may not be so monumental. What may be difficult is getting touchscreen-ready displays out to market. I wonder why new releases of Apple displays, iMacs, and MacBook Pros are delayed? Imagine the impression left on people not familiar with Macs when they walk in to a store and see someone interfacing with an iMac by keyboard, mouse, and touchscreen. I get chills.

Just a thought.
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Old May 15, 2007, 12:47 PM   #12
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Someone found a graphic in one of the dev previews which looked like it was hinting at multi touch functionality.
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Old May 15, 2007, 02:58 PM   #13
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No windows

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Originally Posted by TBi View Post
No overlapping windows? Wouldn't apple just be copying MS then. Non-Overlapping windows is SO Windows 1.0.
Nope, at least from how I read the article.

The idea here is there will be no Windows. You can not overlap something that does not exist. (I should note I don't agree this will happen - and if it does happen it will not happen over night, it would be over several OS updates - Apple likes to phase in their interface changes and not blind side it's OS users, IMO).
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Old May 15, 2007, 03:11 PM   #14
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As a developer I wouldn't like to see something like this. It basically would preassure us into making something akin to Windows, where everythign is maximised. Some applications just don't suit that. Not to mention that it would limit the usefulness of drag and drop. I think the author is just taking a piece of a jigsaw and trying to imagine the entire puzzle. While I think we will see some changes to the interface, I doubt that the delay is down to needing developers to adopt new technologies and more to the reported reason, engineers being moved to the iPhone
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Old May 15, 2007, 03:31 PM   #15
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It was called AtEase and it was, I think, I pain in the bum. I wish that the full screen coverflow could flip around the album art and show track listings like the iPhone.
A matter of time I hope.
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Old May 15, 2007, 10:32 PM   #16
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My guess is that it might relate more to Spaces.

For example each space could be a fully 3 dimensional environment suited to whatever you're working on. Office work might look like a real wooden desk, etc. And you switch between them like you might switch between iPod, Phone, and Internet Communicator like you do on the iPhone. After all, the iPhone is running Leopard!

I didn't understand his premise though. He said it was odd that Apple was giving out these coding headers (whatever the hell that is) early so that they could get work done on this colossal change whereas normally they would want them to breathe and relax???? It seems like Apple would always want them to work fast so that their apps would be ready the day of Leopard's release.

Anyhow it's all very exciting! I even have a countdown widget to WWDC! Only 26 days!
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Old May 16, 2007, 02:53 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swingerofbirch View Post
My guess is that it might relate more to Spaces.

For example each space could be a fully 3 dimensional environment suited to whatever you're working on. Office work might look like a real wooden desk, etc. And you switch between them like you might switch between iPod, Phone, and Internet Communicator like you do on the iPhone. After all, the iPhone is running Leopard!

I didn't understand his premise though. He said it was odd that Apple was giving out these coding headers (whatever the hell that is) early so that they could get work done on this colossal change whereas normally they would want them to breathe and relax???? It seems like Apple would always want them to work fast so that their apps would be ready the day of Leopard's release.

Anyhow it's all very exciting! I even have a countdown widget to WWDC! Only 26 days!
iPhone runs OS X, not Mac OS X.

I do not believe the omission of "Mac" when referring to iPhone was either an accident or an oversight on Apple's part.

Leopard is the next generation of Mac OS X.
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Old May 16, 2007, 03:10 AM   #18
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Does anyone know what the developer head start programs focus on? Which APIs are being added or updated? That would really tell us a lot-- it's the elephant in the room that the article never really addresses.

We know about Core Animation, and Apple clearly thinks that's a big thing. I think it's obvious that we're going to start seeing much more movement on the screen with Leopard-- and with all the attention Apple gets for "eye candy" they rarely add eye candy for it's own sake. All of the eye candy I can think of in OS X is specifically designed to improve usability. We'll probably start to see something bubble out of that-- the first targets will be anything in the current interface that happens abruptly.

What I dread is all the apps that will be coming out with stuff zooming around the screen and rotating on three axes just because it can.

I don't know that the widget "flip" is going to make it to the main desktop. It makes sense for little apps with no menu, but for documents I think it will be better to use sheets and be able to see the content of the window for which properties are being adjusted.

We know (or at least it's been rumored) that the Quicktime API is being reworked. I don't think that's going to result in UI changes though...

Do we know anything else?
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Old May 16, 2007, 03:10 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jodeo View Post
If only there was a way to have a single pane, yet with an intuitive reference to other, hidden, panes... some sort of, 'tabbed interface'...:
Tabbed browsing is definitely an example of the trend he's describing.
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Originally Posted by Eraserhead View Post
That sounds sensible, it totally explains the "secret features" thing too, which need to happen or Apple will look really silly.
Prepare for Apple to look silly. I think they underestimated the amplifier that the iPod gave them-- Jobs has gotten used to making these "change the world" claims just so Apple's little voice could be heard. Now it's not a little voice anymore and there's going to be disappointment all around when the results don't match the booming voice echoing in our memory...
Quote:
Originally Posted by myjellyass View Post
But I still have no vision of how they would manage it; with the appleTV, ipod and iphone it can be simple because it is dealing with simple things; everything can be simply categorised into "music", then "artists" then "album" then "song". But as soon as you start sharing files across more than one categorisation, it can all get a bit screwey...
I tried using links to solve this problem once-- making links into all the places I thought something belonged. It turned into a quagmire very rapidly.

I think this is an obvious area for innovation. To some extent Spotlight was a starting point-- the ability to find stuff by content across single metric organization methods like folders. I'd like a solution that could be navigated though, rather than requiring precise search strings. And something graphical rather than relying on typing.
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Originally Posted by pilky View Post
As a developer I wouldn't like to see something like this. It basically would preassure us into making something akin to Windows, where everythign is maximised. Some applications just don't suit that. Not to mention that it would limit the usefulness of drag and drop. I think the author is just taking a piece of a jigsaw and trying to imagine the entire puzzle. While I think we will see some changes to the interface, I doubt that the delay is down to needing developers to adopt new technologies and more to the reported reason, engineers being moved to the iPhone
I agree. I actually don't like the paned interfaces that much. They rely on large screen size to be effective. I can't imagine using Aperture on anything smaller than my 23", and even with that I'm wishing I had a second display because the panes eat up chunks of screen and I can't control which chunks.

I also agree that the reasons for the delay are most likely for exactly the reasons Apple stated. People are looking for all these hidden meanings in a 3 or 4 month delay. For most companies a 3 month delay is routine. Hell, big companies announce products that they know will be delayed, or even that will never ship, just as a way of taking the wind out of the sails of a competitor. There's nothing in this delay that tells me something earth shattering is going to happen.
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Old May 16, 2007, 04:17 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Analog Kid View Post
Tabbed browsing is definitely an example of the trend he's describing.

Prepare for Apple to look silly. I think they underestimated the amplifier that the iPod gave them-- Jobs has gotten used to making these "change the world" claims just so Apple's little voice could be heard. Now it's not a little voice anymore and there's going to be disappointment all around when the results don't match the booming voice echoing in our memory...

I tried using links to solve this problem once-- making links into all the places I thought something belonged. It turned into a quagmire very rapidly.

I think this is an obvious area for innovation. To some extent Spotlight was a starting point-- the ability to find stuff by content across single metric organization methods like folders. I'd like a solution that could be navigated though, rather than requiring precise search strings. And something graphical rather than relying on typing.

I agree. I actually don't like the paned interfaces that much. They rely on large screen size to be effective. I can't imagine using Aperture on anything smaller than my 23", and even with that I'm wishing I had a second display because the panes eat up chunks of screen and I can't control which chunks.

I also agree that the reasons for the delay are most likely for exactly the reasons Apple stated. People are looking for all these hidden meanings in a 3 or 4 month delay. For most companies a 3 month delay is routine. Hell, big companies announce products that they know will be delayed, or even that will never ship, just as a way of taking the wind out of the sails of a competitor. There's nothing in this delay that tells me something earth shattering is going to happen.
True, but it by October it will have been 2 and a half years since the last major update of the OS. A lot can happen in that time.

I doubt the engineers have just been filming fun backgrounds for iChat or colouring in new templates for Mail.

The "ten new features" announced last year were in my opinion very underwhelming. Considering what SJ was able to achieve at NeXT in a short period with a small, but talented and dedicated group (I know time has moved on but the point still remians). I think we can expect Leopard to be one of the most significant updates to the Mac OS X series.
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Old May 16, 2007, 06:15 AM   #21
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You see the interface of the iPod and/or iPhone and you can clearly see that Apple is one of the leaders in interface and usability design. I really don't know if there are any "top-secret" features in Leopard but it sure as hell better be, or 10.5 will be the most "media-bashed" OS release ever!

Most people related to the Software/Hardware market are not Pro-Apple and the writers from numerous technology websites will be hovering their M$-loving fingers over the keyboard on WWDC, because if there isn't any top secret feature that blows the sky away then it's going to be a hard time for Apple in the media. A company that already has a lot against them, suddently falling behind schedule on a OS release, not-upgrading their products, and not showing what they promised in the OS... is a mistake they just can't afford.

I truly believe Apple is taking it's time with Leopard because it's going to be a brutal OS, with a solid, coherent and innovative GUI, and that's the top secret feature for me, no more Aqua the way we know it.

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Old May 16, 2007, 06:19 AM   #22
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You see the interface of the iPod <snip>
You do know that the iPod GUI is a blatant rip off of creatives first portable jukebox player? Very innovative...
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Old May 16, 2007, 07:08 AM   #23
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You see the interface of the iPod and/or iPhone and you can clearly see that Apple is one of the leaders in interface and usability design.
The iPod interface... you mean the interface that was designed by Pixo, and not Apple?

Quote:
I really don't know if there are any "top-secret" features in Leopard but it sure as hell better be, or 10.5 will be the most "media-bashed" OS release ever!
OS X... you mean the OS that Apple had to buy NEXSTEP because they couldn't organically evolve past OS 9?

And I'm not trying to pick on Apple here. OS X and the iPod interface are beautifully designed. I just don't make any presuppositions about what original, innovative geniuses the Apple developers are.

Quote:
Most people related to the Software/Hardware market are not Pro-Apple and the writers from numerous technology websites will be hovering their M$-loving fingers over the keyboard on WWDC, because if there isn't any top secret feature that blows the sky away then it's going to be a hard time for Apple in the media.
I don't think such media bashing has anything to do with being Windows biased. If Apple and Steve Jobs touts "top secret features" and doesn't deliver, are people supposed to just shrug and gush anyway?

I'm sorry, but a lot of the critical press Apple gets is mostly of its own doing. They gleefully bashed MS for the Vista delays and got plenty of mileage out of it, and there's nothing particularly wrong with that. So why is it suddenly not okay for Apple to get a comparatively mild ribbing over a delay in the Leopard release? And if these touted "top secret" features don't materialize, is the media just supposed to pretend such things were never promised?
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Old May 16, 2007, 07:32 AM   #24
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And I'm not trying to pick on Apple here. OS X and the iPod interface are beautifully designed. I just don't make any presuppositions about what original, innovative geniuses the Apple developers are.

I think your find that most of the innovative geniuses behind NeXT did work for Apple at some stage

Moreover, Apple brought NeXT in 1998 and didn't ship Mac OS X until 2001, and it wasn't really ready until 2002. So I think it was a bit more complicated than just copying the code across.
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Old May 16, 2007, 10:31 AM   #25
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The iPod interface... you mean the interface that was designed by Pixo, and not Apple?



OS X... you mean the OS that Apple had to buy NEXSTEP because they couldn't organically evolve past OS 9?

And I'm not trying to pick on Apple here. OS X and the iPod interface are beautifully designed. I just don't make any presuppositions about what original, innovative geniuses the Apple developers are.



I don't think such media bashing has anything to do with being Windows biased. If Apple and Steve Jobs touts "top secret features" and doesn't deliver, are people supposed to just shrug and gush anyway?

I'm sorry, but a lot of the critical press Apple gets is mostly of its own doing. They gleefully bashed MS for the Vista delays and got plenty of mileage out of it, and there's nothing particularly wrong with that. So why is it suddenly not okay for Apple to get a comparatively mild ribbing over a delay in the Leopard release? And if these touted "top secret" features don't materialize, is the media just supposed to pretend such things were never promised?
Yep, I wasn't saying that the press should not bash Apple if the top secret features were never released... on the contrary, I'm hoping that this "media pressure" will work in our (consumers) favor.

Wasn't NEXSTEP a project founded and led by Steve Jobs after leaving Apple? If so, how can Apple be stealing from something that was theirs by association after the re-hiring of Jobs?

Apple stole the original iPod design from Creative? what? are you honestly saying that Creative has better designers than Apple and if you could choose one of them as "the most innovative" you would pick Creative?

Honestly, it's like the Xerox story, the LG Prada, Dashboard, bla bla bla, a lot of misinformation, It's not like Apple invented the (scroll) wheel, but they surely were the ones who made it a reality and got people to love it.
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