TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Oct 97 Viewpoint

Volume Number: 13 (1997)
Issue Number: 10
Column Tag: Viewpoint

Viewpoint

by Eric Gundrum

A Bit About Boston

Just a few weeks ago, as I write this, Steve Jobs made a number of significant announcements at Macworld Expo in Boston. As is usual with Steve's comments, they had a euphoric affect on the audience. In this case, the audience was much larger than the few thousand people listening live. It included Wall Street investors and probably the entire community of Macintosh users.

The general feeling around the show floor was very positive. Steve's announcements may have caused this feeling. Expo attendance was solid, and, more importantly, Mac users were spending a lot of money at the show. Whether they had extra money to spend because Apple's stock price nearly doubled or because they were excited about Mac OS 8 is hard to say. Nonetheless, attendees showed their support for Macintosh by buying Macintosh products. Many of the venders who chose not to attend should be kicking themselves for missing out on a great chance to market and sell their products.

Rhapsody Andante Pianissimo

Almost as important as what Steve Jobs said at Expo is what he didn't say. He did not talk about Rhapsody, and this had many people asking questions. His failure to mention Rhapsody seems to have been a calculated move. There has been some concern within Apple that at the last WWDC Apple's marketing machine had once again hyped a technology beyond what Apple engineering could possibly deliver on the schedule created by executives. As is typical of WWDC, many developers bought the hype.

Apple seems to be working to reduce the hype, and, hopefully, focus our attention on what Rhapsody really will deliver. Rhapsody was intended to be the long term solution. Mac OS 8 is the technology that will be paying the bills for some time to come, especially in light of its recent success. Apple also may be getting the message from developers that what we see in the developer release will determine what resources we put to Rhapsody development. No developer wants to be trapped again basing a product on Apple's promise of a new technology. Developers will judge their first experience with Rhapsody carefully, and if Rhapsody doesn't live up to Apple's promises, most developers will not look at it again until the next major release. Apple wants to get it right the first time.

I don't mean to say Rhapsody won't be a great OS. Frankly, I won't be able to say one way or the other until I have a chance to work with it. I am anxious to work with it. The idea that I can build applications five times faster than I do now, and with greater reliability, appeals to me greatly. I expect the developer release to demonstrate how Rhapsody will improve developer productivity, even if we don't realize that improvement right away. (Most of us have a lot to learn before we can be proficient building Rhapsody applications.)

There are other things I expect from the Rhapsody developer release: I expect it to look a bit like the Mac on the surface, but not to feel much like one underneath. Apple hadn't planned to release the Advanced UI in the developer release, anyway, so they can have more time with it. (In my opinion, the user experience in Mac OS 8 suggests that Apple has forgotten what the Mac experience is all about, but that is for another column.) I expect the Rhapsody developer release to be slow, possibly slower than Mac OS. I also expect it to be riddled with bugs, but hopefully not in the core OS. Apple is releasing an early version of Rhapsody to developers so we can begin to learn how to build applications in the dramatically different programming environment. I expect Apple to give us an OS we can use to accomplish that task without the bugs and performance problems getting in the way. If they can meet that goal, I will be forgiving of other limitations of this preview release.

There is another reason Steve Jobs did not mention Rhapsody during his keynote address: the unexpected success of Mac OS 8. Apple's new OS has moved off store shelves so quickly, and carried along so many other products, that resellers are starting to think Macintosh users might actually have enough money to interest them. Many "multi-platform" resellers have reported Mac OS 8 sales to rival the dollar volume of the release of Windows 95. Consequently, Apple would like developers to stay focused on delivering new and better Mac OS applications. Mac developers know how to do this and do it well. The number of Mac OS customers will dwarf that of Rhapsody for at least the next two years, so maybe we developers shouldn't be too hasty to abandon it.

Rhapsody likely will come along a bit more quietly and slowly than we were led to believe in the first half of this year. Apples claims the server market is one area that will immediately benefit from the new technology. Others think higher education will be drawn to the strengths of unix hidden underneath. There may be merit in all these claims, but the first market will be the early adopters.

Rhapsody should be in developers hands around the time you read this, or very soon after. I expect we will soon see a wave of many new and ported shareware and freeware applications built just for Rhapsody. These are our first generation Rhapsody products, built as we learn the ins and outs of this new OS. As developers discover the leverage offered by the rich toolkits built into Rhapsody, we will see more sophisticated applications coming out. We already have several NEXTSTEP-turned-Rhapsody developers showing us what they have been doing all these years. If the dreams bear out, we should see some revolutionary software enter the market during the coming year. It may ultimately be the plethora of exciting new software that drives users to Rhapsody, not the technical superiority of the OS. Only time will tell.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

How to evolve Eevee in Pokemon GO
By now, almost everyone should be hip to how to evolve Pokemon in Pokemon GO (and if not, there's a guide for that). Just gather enough candy of the appropriate type, feed them all to the Pokemon, and evolution happens. It's a miracle that would... | Read more »
CSR Racing 2: Guide to all game modes
It might not seem like there are all that many ways to go fast in a straight line, but CSR Racing 2 begs to differ. [Read more] | Read more »
Bulb Boy (Games)
Bulb Boy 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Multi-award winning 2D point & click horror adventure about a boy with a glowing head. | Read more »
5 top free emoji keyboard apps
If we're not at peak emoji yet as a society, it feels like we definitely should be. The emoji concept has gone far beyond what anyone in Japan could have envisioned when the people there unleashed it on an unsuspecting world, but the West has... | Read more »
How to unlock more characters in Disney...
One of the big charms of Disney Emoji Blitz is seeing a wide variety of beloved Disney and Pixar characters transformed into smiling emojis. Even someone like the sneaky Randall from Monsters Inc., who probably never cracked a smile on film, is... | Read more »
Cubway (Games)
Cubway 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Cubway is a journey with an abstract story of lifecycle of rebirth, called Samsara. Guide the cube through the long way full of dangers... | Read more »
Colorcube (Games)
Colorcube 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Turn pieces and blend colours in this minimal yet visually stunning puzzler.Over 200 handcrafted and challenging levels. Features... | Read more »
Doodle God Griddlers (Games)
Doodle God Griddlers 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Crusader Kings: Chronicles (Games)
Crusader Kings: Chronicles 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Crusader Kings: Chronicles is an interactive text based game that puts you in the shoes of Guy de Rose as you make... | Read more »
Roads of Rome: New Generation (Games)
Roads of Rome: New Generation 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $5.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

MacBook Airs on sale for up to $150 off MSRP
Amazon has 11″ and 13″ MacBook Airs on sale for up to $150 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free: - 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air (sku MMGF2LL/A): $899.99 $100 off MSRP - 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB... Read more
Apple refurbished 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 13″ Retina MacBook Pros available for up to $270 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.7GHz... Read more
Apple refurbished 11-inch MacBook Airs availa...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 11″ MacBook Airs (the latest models), available for up to $170 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each MacBook, and shipping is... Read more
Apple iPad Pro Sales Far Outpacing Microsoft...
A report on Appleinsider notes that despite Microsoft Surface tablet PC sales growing by 9 percent year over year, revenues remained below $1 billion, and are down sequentially from the $1.1 billion... Read more
DEVONthink 2.9 Features Ultra-fast, Robust, A...
DEVONthink 2.9 allows users to keep databases synchronized using many means of transport. It transmits them between Macs on the local network or stores them in a syncable form on removable hard... Read more
12-inch WiFi Apple iPad Pros on sale for up t...
B&H Photo has 12″ WiFi iPad Pros on sale for up to $100 off MSRP, each including free shipping. B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 12″ Space Gray 32GB WiFi iPad Pro: $749 $50 off MSRP - 12″... Read more
Apple refurbished 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 15″ Retina MacBook Pros available for up to $380 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free: - 15″ 2... Read more
Apple refurbished Mac minis available for up...
Apple has Certified Refurbished Mac minis available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $419 $80 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac... Read more
Apple Mac Sales Finally Colliding With ‘Innov...
After successfully swimming against a tide of diminishing PC sales through 2014 and 2015, it appears that Apple has finally stopped defying gravity and is running up against the unwritten “innovate... Read more
13-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to...
B&H Photo has 13″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $150 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 13″ 2.7GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pro: $1189 $110 off MSRP - 13″ 2.7GHz/... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Professional Learning Specialist - A...
Job Summary The Apple Professional Learning Specialist is a full-time position for one year with Apple in the Phoenix, AZ area. This position requires a high Read more
*Apple* Picker - Apple Hill Orchard (United...
Apple Hill Orchard, Co. Rte. 21,Whitehall, NY 9/7/16-10/228/16. Pick fresh market or processing apples Productivity of 60 boxes and 80 boxes processing fruit per Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - APPLE (United...
Job Summary As an Apple Solutions Consultant, you'll be the link between our future customers and our products. You'll showcase your entrepreneurial spirit as you Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions - Apple,...
Job Description:SalesSpecialist - Retail Customer Service and SalesTransform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - APPLE (United...
Job Summary As an Apple Solutions Consultant, you'll be the link between our future customers and our products. You'll showcase your entrepreneurial spirit as you Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.