TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Oct 00 Viewpoint

Volume Number: 16 (2000)
Issue Number: 10
Column Tag: Viewpoint

Viewpoint

By Neil Ticktin, Publisher, MacTech Magazine

Mac OS X... Are We There Yet?

I'm sit here today, having just received my copy of Mac OS X beta, and I begin to wonder, as you probably are... what's going to happen with this? When will developers make the jump to X? What does the future hold for us as developers? Now, while I won't profess to being a soothsayer, I'll take the plunge and put my opinion in print for the world to see.

Apple is Serious... this time

The developer community has been burned by Apple's promise of a modern operating system since, say, the early to mid-1990's. Yes, it has been that long. We've been through the original System 8 (not the one that shipped), Copland, rumors of the BeOS, Rhapsody, Yellow Box, and more. Time and time again, Apple has simply not delivered the promise of a "modern operating system". Some were technical problems, some were business problems... and some were just plain old change in direction.

So, why should we believe that this time Apple is going to make this happen?

Two reasons: Steve Jobs and Public Beta. Steve Jobs can't stand to be publicly humiliated. He's stood up saying, "the train has left the station", and that (paraphrased) we're moving forward with Mac OS X, not as a multi-prong strategy, but as a single strategy for the future. Now, whether they ship Q1 2000 or Q2, I don't know... and it doesn't matter in the long run. Steve Jobs will make sure it ships in one form or another, relatively early on next year. He just won't stand for it being otherwise.

How do we know that this isn't just some promise as we've heard before? A public beta. Not only does the general public have tangible evidence in its hands, but early reports are that it runs fairly well... a good indication that we're, in relative terms, close.

Of course, there's always a third reason why things are different this time. Apple has moved into the arena of other, very profitable OS vendors... they are charging for a beta! :) But seriously, you have to believe that they will follow through this time since they are bold enough to charge for the beta.

Yeah, Yeah... I'll Wait

There are already a lot of developers moving to X. But, some of you are holding back. This may be an important mistake, but not for the reasons that you are thinking.

It's pretty clear that the Classic environment on Mac OS X (i.e., the environment responsible for running non-carbonized Mac OS 9 applications) is going to work well. So, yes, your customers can run their Classic apps under X.

The issue is that launching the Classic environment takes time... and frankly, even if it can do something about it, Apple has no incentive to make it launch faster. Your customers will quickly learn that they want to avoid launching the Classic environment if they have a choice.

That's where you come in... you can make their experience with your product a good one, or you can set yourself up for them being disappointed in the Classic situation and blaming your product.

Bottom line: customers will want native and carbonized apps so they can avoid Classic. Now is the time to start working on it.

But I Have So Much to Do!

If you are like me, you have a million things to do, and not enough time to do them. Working on a new version of your application for an operating system that is technically not shipping, just hasn't bubbled up on the list. So, why should you move forward today?

First, I'm not going to tell you what you should do with your project... that's your call to make. Only you have the information to make such a decision. Though, there are a few things to consider.

Anecdotally at least, carbonizing is relatively easy. For example, a typical app could easily take as little as 2 weeks to carbonize to get it up and running. A bit longer to iron the issues out, and then of course testing. But, this is not a several month project, as it may seem.

More importantly, there are other benefits to carbonizing. Let me explain.

The things that slow folks down the most when carbonizing their apps typically are their own bugs. Many engineers are thrilled because they are re-writing bad code that they've wanted to get to for a while, but haven't had time.

Writing code that is properly carbonized actually turns out to be a good way to debug and test your program - and may result in lower QA or tech support costs. Mac OS X tells you now that you are stepping on memory... not some day down the road when you aren't expecting it. In addition, the development and debugging turn around time is much faster than with Mac OS 9 - in part because, you aren't generally crashing your system as you tracking down bugs.

The bottom line is that carbonizing your app is not the challenge or pain that people think it is. It's actually a lot easier, and once through the process, people are generally happy they did it citing that it wasn't as hard as they thought it would be.

Leading the Market

Look... Apple is going to push really, really hard here... hard on their own engineers, and hard on developers. The timing of when they will ship 1.0 will be dependent on two things: engineering and market response. If the market responds saying that they want lots of things changed, then Apple will have to do those in addition to the other items they already know about. Rest assured though... a 1.0 version of Mac OS X will ship sooner rather than later.

Furthermore, the acceptance of X as the current (and only) operating system will depend on market acceptance. I expect to see Apple pushing the timeline forward just ahead of the market. They've got experience with this... just the way they dove in on USB, FireWire, and even Wireless Networking. Yes, it will be a bit painful to make such a leap, but in recent years, Apple has been able to keep that pain period relatively short (look at USB).

Bottom line: Jobs is right... the train has left the station. If you are going to support Mac OS X in a way that will help promote your product, the time is now to carbonize.

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

MacFamilyTree 7.3.4 - Create and explore...
MacFamilyTree gives genealogy a facelift: it's modern, interactive, incredibly fast, and easy to use. We're convinced that generations of chroniclers would have loved to trade in their genealogy... Read more
Yummy FTP 1.10.2 - FTP/SFTP/FTPS client...
Yummy FTP is an FTP + SFTP + FTPS file transfer client which focuses on speed, reliability and productivity. Whether you need to transfer a few files or a few thousand, schedule automatic backups, or... Read more
VueScan 9.5.08 - Scanner software with a...
VueScan is a scanning program that works with most high-quality flatbed and film scanners to produce scans that have excellent color fidelity and color balance. VueScan is easy to use, and has... Read more
Iridient Developer 3.0.1 - Powerful imag...
Iridient Developer (was RAW Developer) is a powerful image conversion application designed specifically for OS X. Iridient Developer gives advanced photographers total control over every aspect of... Read more
Air Video Server HD 2.1.0 - Stream video...
Air Video Server HD streams videos instantly from your computer on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch or Apple TV. No need to worry about converting or transferring files. We took everything that was... Read more
Duplicate Annihilator 5.7.5 - Find and d...
Duplicate Annihilator takes on the time-consuming task of comparing the images in your iPhoto library using effective algorithms to make sure that no duplicate escapes. Duplicate Annihilator... Read more
BusyContacts 1.0.2 - Fast, efficient con...
BusyContacts is a contact manager for OS X that makes creating, finding, and managing contacts faster and more efficient. It brings to contact management the same power, flexibility, and sharing... Read more
Capture One Pro 8.2.0.82 - RAW workflow...
Capture One Pro 8 is a professional RAW converter offering you ultimate image quality with accurate colors and incredible detail from more than 300 high-end cameras -- straight out of the box. It... Read more
Backblaze 4.0.0.872 - Online backup serv...
Backblaze is an online backup service designed from the ground-up for the Mac.With unlimited storage available for $5 per month, as well as a free 15-day trial, peace of mind is within reach with... Read more
Little Snitch 3.5.2 - Alerts you about o...
Little Snitch gives you control over your private outgoing data. Track background activity As soon as your computer connects to the Internet, applications often have permission to send any... Read more

Pie In The Sky: A Pizza Odyssey (Games)
Pie In The Sky: A Pizza Odyssey 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: A game about delivering pizza. In space. | Read more »
Chosen Gives Hopeful Singers, Songwriter...
If YouTube videos and reality TV shows like The Voice have taught us one thing, it’s that there are a lot of people out there who are anxious to show the world their talents. And if they’ve taught us a second thing, it’s that there’s an almost... | Read more »
Android's Popular OfficeSuite Now A...
Once only available for Android devices, OfficeSuite has finally landed on the app store. The Mobile Systems app lets you view, edit, create, and share Word, Excel, and PowerPoint documents as well as convert them to/from PDFs. It's touted as being... | Read more »
Warhammer: Arcane Magic is Coming Soon,...
Turbo Tape Games has announced that they're joining forces with Games Workshop to bring the turn-based strategy board game, Warhammer: Arcane Magic, to life on the iOS. | Read more »
Fast & Furious: Legacy's Creati...
| Read more »
N-Fusion and 505's Ember is Totally...
| Read more »
These are All the Apple Watch Apps and G...
The Apple Watch is less than a month from hitting store shelves, and once you get your hands on it you're probably going to want some apps and games to install. Fear not! We've compiled a list of all the Apple Watch apps and games we've been able to... | Read more »
Appy to Have Known You - Lee Hamlet Look...
Being at 148Apps these past 2 years has been an awesome experience that has taught me a great deal, and working with such a great team has been a privilege. Thank you to Rob Rich, and to both Rob LeFebvre and Jeff Scott before him, for helping me... | Read more »
Hands-On With Allstar Heroes - A Promisi...
Let’s get this out of the way quickly. Allstar Heroes looks a lot like a certain other recent action RPG release, but it turns out that while it’s not yet available here, Allstar Heroes has been around for much longer than that other title. Now that... | Read more »
Macho Man and Steve Austin Join the Rank...
WWE Immortals, by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and WWE, has gotten a superstar update. You'll now have access to Macho Man Randy Savage and Steve Austin. Both characters have two different versions: Macho Man Randy Savage Renegade or Macho... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Adobe Brings Powerful Layout-Design Capabilit...
Adobe today announced the availability of Adobe Comp CC, a free iPad app that enables rapid creation of layout concepts for mobile, Web and print projects. With Comp CC, designers can rough out and... Read more
Apple offering refurbished 27-inch 5K iMacs f...
The Apple Store is offering Apple Certified Refurbished 27″ 3.5GHz 5K iMacs for $2119 including free shipping. Their price is $380 off the price of new models, and it’s the lowest price available for... Read more
16GB iPad mini on sale for $199, save $50
Walmart has 16GB iPad minis (1st generation) available for $199.99 on their online store, including free shipping. Their price is $50 off MSRP. Online orders only. Read more
New 128GB MacBook Airs on sale for $50 off MS...
 B&H Photo has 128GB 11″ and 13″ 2015 MacBook Airs on sale today for $50 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 11″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air (Model #MJVM2LL/A): $849 $50 off... Read more
13-inch 2.6GHz Retina MacBook Pro (refurbishe...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.6GHz/128GB Retina MacBook Pros available for $979 including free shipping. Original MSRP for this model was $1299. Read more
Save up to $600 with Apple refurbished Mac Pr...
The Apple Store is offering Apple Certified Refurbished Mac Pros for up to $600 off the cost of new models. An Apple one-year warranty is included with each Mac Pro, and shipping is free. The... Read more
Samsung Galaxy S 6 and Galaxy S 6 edge U.S. P...
Samsung Electronics America, Inc. has announced the Galaxy S 6 and Galaxy S 6 edge will be available in the U.S. beginning April 10, with pre-orders being accepted now. “We have completely reimagined... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro (refurbished) avai...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pros available for $829, or $270 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free: - 13″ 2.... Read more
Save up to $80 on iPad Air 2s, NY tax only, f...
 B&H Photo has iPad Air 2s on sale for $80 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 16GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $469.99 $30 off - 64GB iPad Air 2 WiFi: $549.99 $50 off - 128GB iPad... Read more
iMacs on sale for up to $205 off MSRP
B&H Photo has 21″ and 27″ iMacs on sale for up to $205 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 21″ 1.4GHz iMac: $1019 $80 off - 21″ 2.7GHz iMac: $1189 $110 off - 21″ 2.9GHz... Read more

Jobs Board

DevOps Software Engineer - *Apple* Pay, iOS...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
Sr. Technical Services Consultant, *Apple*...
**Job Summary** Apple Professional Services (APS) has an opening for a senior technical position that contributes to Apple 's efforts for strategic and transactional Read more
Lead *Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail...
**Job Summary** Job Summary The Lead ASC is an Apple employee who serves as the Apple business manager and influencer in a hyper-business critical Reseller's store Read more
*Apple* Pay - Site Reliability Engineer - Ap...
**Job Summary** Imagine what you could do here. At Apple , great ideas have a way of becoming great products, services, and customer experiences very quickly. Bring Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.