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

OmniOutliner Pro 4.6 - Pro version of th...
OmniOutliner Pro is a flexible program for creating, collecting, and organizing information. Give your creativity a kick start by using an application that's actually designed to help you think. It's... Read more
Alfred 3.1 - Quick launcher for apps and...
Alfred is an award-winning productivity application for OS X. Alfred saves you time when you search for files online or on your Mac. Be more productive with hotkeys, keywords, and file actions at... Read more
OmniOutliner 4.6 - Organize your ideas,...
OmniOutliner is a flexible program for creating, collecting, and organizing information. Give your creativity a kick start by using an application that's actually designed to help you think. It's... Read more
Default Folder X 5.0.6 - Enhances Open a...
Default Folder X attaches a toolbar to the right side of the Open and Save dialogs in any OS X-native application. The toolbar gives you fast access to various folders and commands. You just click on... Read more
Adobe Creative Cloud 3.8.0.310 - Access...
Adobe Creative Cloud costs $19.99/month for a single app, or $49.99/month for the entire suite. Introducing Adobe Creative Cloud desktop applications, including Adobe Photoshop CC and Illustrator CC... Read more
MYStuff Pro 2.0.25 - Create inventories...
MYStuff Pro is the most flexible way to create detail-rich inventories for your home or small business. Add items to MYStuff by dragging and dropping existing information, uploading new images, or... Read more
Viber 6.2.0 - Send messages and make cal...
Viber lets you send free messages and make free calls to other Viber users, on any device and network, in any country! Viber syncs your contacts, messages and call history with your mobile device, so... Read more
Data Rescue 4.2.3 - Powerful hard drive...
Use Data Rescue to recover: crashed, corrupted or non-mounting hard drive deleted, damaged, or lost files reformatted or erased hard drive One powerful new feature found in Data Rescue 4 is... Read more
Microsoft Remote Desktop 8.0.34 - Connec...
With Microsoft Remote Desktop, you can connect to a remote PC and your work resources from almost anywhere. Experience the power of Windows with RemoteFX in a Remote Desktop client designed to help... Read more
Microsoft Remote Desktop 8.0.34 - Connec...
With Microsoft Remote Desktop, you can connect to a remote PC and your work resources from almost anywhere. Experience the power of Windows with RemoteFX in a Remote Desktop client designed to help... Read more

Find out the story behind League of Ange...
If you’re looking for a new thrilling MMORPG to play with your friends then you’ll be excited to hear that there is a sequel to one of the most well known titles in the genre – namely League of Angels 2. With a brand new 3D engine offering... | Read more »
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Blazing...
I'm not sure if it's possible to say you are an anime fan but also never have seen one episode of Naruto. If it is, then I resemble that remark, and if not, I offer a hearty apology. [Read more] | Read more »
5 mobile games that let you explore spac...
No Man's Sky hasn't exactly turned out to be everything it was promised. Though its core concept of exploring an unimaginably vast universe of different planets is an intriguing one, the execution has left many PS4 and PC gamers feeling like they... | Read more »
Mummy madness in new action game Tomb He...
Hot on the tail of Bump Hero, ZPlay is giving gamers another reason to get screen bashing with a brand new release. Tomb Heroes is a challenging action game in which you battle enemies in various tombs around the world. You can select from nine... | Read more »
Siralim 2 (RPG / Roguelike) (Games)
Siralim 2 (RPG / Roguelike) 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Siralim 2 is an old-school monster catching RPG. Summon and customize hundreds of creatures to fight for you as... | Read more »
Clean Text (Productivity)
Clean Text 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Productivity Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Gemini - A Journey of Two Stars (Games)
Gemini - A Journey of Two Stars 1.0.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.1 (iTunes) Description: *** SPECIAL LAUNCH SALE: $2.99 (25% off) *** "A mesmerizing and unexpectedly emotional journey." -- Los... | Read more »
How to get four NFL superstars for your...
Even though you're probably well on your way to building a top notch squad for the new season in Madden NFL Mobile, let's say you could beef it up by adding Rob Gronkowski, Antonio Brown, Von Miller, and Todd Gurley to your roster. That's... | Read more »
Cartoon Network Superstar Soccer: Goal!!...
Cartoon Network Superstar Soccer: Goal!!! – Multiplayer Sports Game Starring Your Favorite Characters 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Become a soccer superstar with your... | Read more »
NFL Huddle: What's new in Topps NFL...
Can you smell that? It's the scent of pigskin in the air, which either means that cliches be damned, pigs are flying in your neck of the woods, or the new NFL season is right around the corner. [Read more] | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

RESCUECOM 2016 Semi-Annual Computer Reliabili...
The beginning of a new school year is upon us again, in which students and parents have some very important choices to make, often including the purchase of a computer or tablet. Whether you are... Read more
VRS Design Damda Glide Series iPhone 7 and 7...
What makes the Damda Glide Series for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus special? Case maker VRS Design says its Damda Glide Series is the first mobile case to incorporate a semi-automatic mechanism for... Read more
Apple refurbished iMacs available for up to $...
Apple has Certified Refurbished 2015 21″ & 27″ iMacs available for up to $350 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. The following models are available: - 21″ 3.... Read more
Clearance 2015 13-inch MacBook Airs available...
B&H Photo has clearance 2015 13″ MacBook Airs available for $350 off original MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 13″ 1.6GHz/4GB/128GB MacBook Air (MJVE2LL/A): $829... Read more
Check Apple prices on any device with the iTr...
MacPrices is proud to offer readers a free iOS app (iPhones, iPads, & iPod touch) and Android app (Google Play and Amazon App Store) called iTracx, which allows you to glance at today’s lowest... Read more
Save $120 with Apple refurbished Time Capsule...
Apple has certified refurbished Time Capsules available for $120 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each Time Capsule, and shipping is free: - 2TB Time Capsule: $179, $120 off (not... Read more
9-inch 32GB iPad Pros on sale for $70 off MSR...
B&H Photo has 9″ 32GB WiFi Apple iPad Pros on sale for $70 off MSRP, each including free shipping. B&H charges sales tax in NY only: - 9″ Space Gray 32GB WiFi iPad Pro: $529 $70 off MSRP - 9... Read more
Mac minis on sale for up to $140 off MSRP
Adorama has Mac minis on sale for up to $100 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY & NJ sales tax only: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $449 $50 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac mini: $649 $50 off MSRP Amazon has the... Read more
Back To School with OtterBox Essentials
Back to school means back to an environment that is tough on tech. OtterBox has the back to school essentials you need to keep tech safe from drops, bumps, scratches and hallway havoc. Check out the... Read more
VRS Design Releases New iPhone 7 Plus Case Li...
With a device as large and costly as the iPhone 7 Plus, it is primal instinct to protect it from potential damage. According to a study by SquareTrade in 2012, iPhone damages cost Americans roughly $... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Apple (United...
Apple Solutions ConsultantJob Number: 51218534Pleasant Hill, California, United StatesPosted: Aug. 18, 2016Weekly Hours: 40.00Job SummaryAs an Apple Solutions Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Apple (United...
# Apple Solutions Consultant Job Number: 51218354 Fredericksburg, Virginia, United States Posted: Aug. 18, 2016 Weekly Hours: 40.00 **Job Summary** As an Apple 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* /Mac Support Engineer - GFI Digital,...
FI Digital, Inc. is currently seeking candidates for a full time Apple Support Engineer to add to our Maryland Heights, Missouri IT team. Candidates must be dynamic Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Apple (United...
Apple Solutions ConsultantJob Number: 51218534Pleasant Hill, California, United StatesPosted: Aug. 18, 2016Weekly Hours: 40.00Job SummaryAs an Apple Solutions Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.