UNIX and OS X

a456

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Oct 5, 2005
882
0
I know less than nothing about UNIX, but is Apple's obsession with full UNIX certification and ZFS a sign that it is not seeking world domination and to be the next MS (by releasing OS X for all x86 computers), but is instead seeking to be a part of the UNIX/Linux ecosystem, able to offer its software on other distros (is that the right word?) with minimum recoding? This it seems to me would guarantee the sort of longevity that I think Apple is interested in. Because if it simply replaces MS, then eventually UNIX/Linux will inevitably overtake. And I think rather than being an evolutionary stepping-stone, Apple wants to be a survivor that keeps going and going for as long as possible - this is its aim along with innovation above and beyond pure money making. Does this make sense? I don't think that by their nature they are an all or nothing company. If the tech world changes to Solaris, Ubuntu, OS X, etc. being the dominant players, there will still be money just not the kind that MS is used to. MS is an all or nothing Vegas or bust kind of outfit that looks at the current climate and like a big gorilla scratches its head, because it hasn't a clue what is going on or why its loyal consumers are fleeing like rats on a sinking ship.
 

cmaier

macrumors P6
Jul 25, 2007
16,125
12,460
California
I know less than nothing about UNIX, but is Apple's obsession with full UNIX certification and ZFS a sign that it is not seeking world domination and to be the next MS (by releasing OS X for all x86 computers), but is instead seeking to be a part of the UNIX/Linux ecosystem, able to offer its software on other distros (is that the right word?) with minimum recoding? This it seems to me would guarantee the sort of longevity that I think Apple is interested in. Because if it simply replaces MS, then eventually UNIX/Linux will inevitably overtake. And I think rather than being an evolutionary stepping-stone, Apple wants to be a survivor that keeps going and going for as long as possible - this is its aim along with innovation above and beyond pure money making. Does this make sense? I don't think that by their nature they are an all or nothing company. If the tech world changes to Solaris, Ubuntu, OS X, etc. being the dominant players, there will still be money just not the kind that MS is used to. MS is an all or nothing Vegas or bust kind of outfit that looks at the current climate and like a big gorilla scratches its head, because it hasn't a clue what is going on or why its loyal consumers are fleeing like rats on a sinking ship.
It's the other way around. By being UNIX, apple can leverage tons of software written for other platforms (it can be recompiled to run on mac).
 
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weaverra

macrumors 6502
Sep 27, 2006
250
2
I know less than nothing about UNIX, but is Apple's obsession with full UNIX certification and ZFS a sign that it is not seeking world domination and to be the next MS (by releasing OS X for all x86 computers), but is instead seeking to be a part of the UNIX/Linux ecosystem, able to offer its software on other distros (is that the right word?) with minimum recoding? This it seems to me would guarantee the sort of longevity that I think Apple is interested in. Because if it simply replaces MS, then eventually UNIX/Linux will inevitably overtake. And I think rather than being an evolutionary stepping-stone, Apple wants to be a survivor that keeps going and going for as long as possible - this is its aim along with innovation above and beyond pure money making. Does this make sense? I don't think that by their nature they are an all or nothing company. If the tech world changes to Solaris, Ubuntu, OS X, etc. being the dominant players, there will still be money just not the kind that MS is used to. MS is an all or nothing Vegas or bust kind of outfit that looks at the current climate and like a big gorilla scratches its head, because it hasn't a clue what is going on or why its loyal consumers are fleeing like rats on a sinking ship.

I think Apple is doing a little more than surviving. They are taking these companies head on.
 
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MisterMe

macrumors G4
Jul 17, 2002
10,650
29
USA
It's the other way around. By being UNIX, apple can leverage tons of software written for other platforms (it can be recompiled to run on mac).
For the most part, I disagree. I think that a456 is closer to the truth here. Since its introduction, MacOS X has been an uncertified POSIX-compatible OS. Apple has everything necessary to run Unix-applications on the Mac. If what you claim is true, the the most obvious thing that Apple would have done would have been to implement Aqua as an X11 windows manager. Apple does not produce a single commercial Unix productivity or creative application. Apple does not encourage Mac developers to build standard Unix apps. And have you ever actually seen a standard Unix app? The OpenOffice suite is a prime example. Everyone is waiting for it to be ported to Aqua. The GIMP compared to Photoshop? There is no choice between those two. Building MacOS X on a Unix foundation gives Apple enormous flexibility. But the "tons of software written for other platforms" is for the most part narrowly focused software written for specialized needs.
 
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cmaier

macrumors P6
Jul 25, 2007
16,125
12,460
California
For the most part, I disagree. I think that a456 is closer to the truth here. Since its introduction, MacOS X has been an uncertified POSIX-compatible OS. Apple has everything necessary to run Unix-applications on the Mac. If what you claim is true, the the most obvious thing that Apple would have done would have been to implement Aqua as an X11 windows manager. Apple does not produce a single commercial Unix productivity or creative application. Apple does not encourage Mac developers to build standard Unix apps. And have you ever actually seen a standard Unix app? The OpenOffice suite is a prime example. Everyone is waiting for it to be ported to Aqua. The GIMP compared to Photoshop? There is no choice between those two. Building MacOS X on a Unix foundation gives Apple enormous flexibility. But the "tons of software written for other platforms" is for the most part narrowly focused software written for specialized needs.
A remarkable percentage of Unix apps (and by that I mean unix, not linux) are server-side, and thus x11 isn't an issue. In the financial industry, scientific and engineering community, etc., tons of stuff still runs on Solaris and other flavors of "real" unix. That's the stuff I'm talking about.

I agree it's not much, but the idea that achieving unix certification is to allow apple to port its apps to other platforms is silly; by analog to your own argument, in order to do that, apple should focus on porting cocoa (again) to other OS's, since most apple software needs it (just as "most" unix software uses x11).

Another argument: being posix-compliant makes it a lot easier to run x11, even if it isn't written/supplied by apple.

What this certification has done has legitimized mac os in a lot of shops where people would never have given it a second look before. Not a lot of sales to be made in those shops, but they are very high end sales.
 
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dr_lha

macrumors 68000
Oct 8, 2003
1,587
0
I wouldn't be using Mac OS X unless it had that Unix base and X11 support, and most of my colleagues in my field are the same way, although most of them now use Macs. The point with Mac OS X is that it brings you the best of both worlds: Mac Apps which are 2nd to none in terms of useability, and X11 apps when you need them. Thankfully most of the software I use only uses X11 for things like showing plots, so its not a huge burden to live in a mixed environment.

Although it would have been nice if Apple used X11 for the basis of Aqua (for one thing being able to have network transparency for apps like X11 does would be very nice), I can understand why they would not, X11 has a lot of cruft and in trying to fix it they would most likely be faced with the nightmare of the Open Source "community" accusing them of "embracing and extending" X11 to fit their needs.

I feel the current set up is very nice personally.
 
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synth3tik

macrumors 68040
Oct 11, 2006
3,955
2
Minneapolis, MN
For us the level 3 UNIX cert. means that we can rest assured that we are running on the stablest platform.

Upping the ante is what Apple has always done.:D
 
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