How dated is Mac OS's user interface?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by .:Aleph:., Jun 4, 2013.

  1. .:Aleph:. macrumors member

    Jun 4, 2013
    When Apple was releasing Mountain Lion and Microsoft its Windows 8, I used to read a lot of the comments below articles, blog posts and on message boards about how awfully dated the Mac OS now looks. Some people disagreed and then I had the impression that such discussions vanished. I'm not seeing much of it now either, probably because people know not much will change.

    Now that Apple will probably release the 10.9 version, which we know will only have slight tweaks and re-designs, I'd like to know what do you think of the user interface look? How dated is it? What makes it look that way?

    What would you remove and what would you keep? Are you fed up with Lucida Grande? Would you order a new typeface for the next design? Do you want a different colour than that omnipresent pale silver / light grey? What do you think of the icons?
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I don't think its dated and I'm content with the UI.

    I'd like Apple to enhance the experience making it easier or better to do my work.
  3. itickings macrumors 6502a


    Apr 14, 2007
    I'm not too concerned with the look of ML, but there is more to a user interface than the visual stuff. Sure, there is room for improvement, and it would for sure be possible to redesign everything and make it better.

    Compared to Windows and most *nix window managers, OS X is seriously lacking in the "control stuff using the keyboard"-department, but that probably won't count as "dated". The less than optimal handling of multiple screens on the other hand could be attributed to the user interface being dated.

    As for the look of OS X: Removing colors might be trendy and modern, but convenient visual cues disappear when everything is gray. Not entirely happy with that. Looking at actual screenshots from old versions of OS X makes ML look much more modern than you'd think at first. OS X has changed a lot in some ways, but stayed the same in other.
  4. benwiggy macrumors 68020

    Jun 15, 2012
    To me, "dated" means "highly representative of a design style that was strongly linked to a particular time which is no longer fashionable".
    There are plenty of classic designs that never date.

    A black dinner suit will never be "dated". A disco shirt with ruffles and inking will.

    If people mean "it hasn't changed for a long time": then I'm fine with that. There is nothing worse than changing things for the sake of change.
  5. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

    May 1, 2009
    well said. Fixing something that aint broke is what's "dated"
  6. old-wiz macrumors G3

    Mar 26, 2008
    West Suburban Boston Ma
    I'm fine with the UI as it is. I'd hate to see change where something works just fine now. Lots of things could be improved, but I don't see an issue with the UI.
  7. omgitsbees macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2013
    As a long time Windows user, Windows 8 is terrible, and I feel pretty confident in saying that a lot of other long time Windows users agree with that. That said, Win8 on a tablet is pretty nice, but your non-touchscreen display? It feels like a downgrade in functionality over even Windows 95, I feel like it was that extreme of a change.

    So to get to my point; I think the reason why no one is talking about Windows 8 vs. Mac OS X, is because there is nothing to really talk about. Win8 is a completely new direction for Microsoft, and they still have a long ways to go to make it work. A lot of people do not like it, and so there is really no comparison. Whether or not it is more modern becomes irrelevant.

    Honestly, I don't see Mac OS X as dated at all anyways. It's a very unique OS, really easy to use, and a fantastic substitute to Windows 7. I enjoy using both operating systems.

    This is pretty much what I feel Microsoft did with Windows.
  8. printz macrumors regular

    Dec 23, 2012
    Concerning the artwork: OSX's current theme is not dated at all. It seems to be very trendy in the free desktop environment world (KDE, GNOME, Xfce etc.). They have similar aluminium gradient UI, similar scrollbars, special effects (like Exposé)… Linux run on VM looks very similar to OSX, just with bigger fonts.
  9. itickings macrumors 6502a


    Apr 14, 2007
    Sounds a bit contradictory. At least it used to be a sure sign that something was truly dated when the free desktop environments finished duplicating it... ;)

    I'd say Tiger looks a bit dated by now, at least, so the current look will probably feel a bit dated a version or two later.
  10. Southernboyj macrumors 68000


    Mar 8, 2012
    Mobile, AL
    iOS might need to be freshen up.. but I really hope they don't mess with OS X's UI too much. I like it.
  11. Dolorian macrumors 65816


    Apr 25, 2007
    As far as changes for OS X goes, I hope the get rid of the switch to full screen animation or at least provide an option to turn it off. It is unnecessary, annoying and time consuming.
  12. KBS756 macrumors 6502a

    Jan 27, 2009
    OSX is great as far as interface goes, if they want to add somethin to it fine, just dont brake what is already great and allow people to choose if they dont like what you add.

    Far better then iOS, but could use some fixes and tweaks, main glaring issue I have is the issue with Full Screen apps on 2 screens

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