TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Datadump from New York City: The Adoption of Mac OS X.

Volume Number: 18 (2002)
Issue Number: 9
Column Tag: Viewpoint

Datadump from New York City: The Adoption of Mac OS X.

by Andrew C. Stone

I have excellent man-in-the-street news for Mac OS X developers - old time Mac users are now using OS X full time, joining the legion of 'switchers' who are buying Macs for the first time and X is all they know. Having shipped the first suite of native OS X applications, I've been closely following the X adoption by listening to the folks that visit our booth during MacWorld Expos, especially the ones in NYC where you hear the undecorated truth. Critical mass has finally been reached in my estimation because 'da heavies are using it now.

In all previous Expos, I heard things like "When PhotoShop ships, I'll change to X", "when our print drivers are available, I'll change to X", and basically, "when this that or the other thing happens, I'll change to X". Those things must have happened because now users are saying, "The only thing I miss on OS X is ______". This is exactly the discussion that we X developers love to hear, especially for the great ideas they give us!

I have a few "X adoption lead indicator" people, including John Perry Barlow, cognitive dissident and freedom fighter, lyricist for the Grateful Dead and the String Cheese Incident, and ex-Apple Master. He was an '80's Mac user, who saw the NeXT and the Light, and was one of the great journalists for this visionary platform. In 1990 on different Rocky Mountain ranches, the two of us were running NeXTStep, the precursor to OS X and the platform on which the Internet was created. You had to be some kind of unix geek to configure those beautiful black cubes.

By the time NeXT was subsumed by Apple in December, 1996, John had already faithfully repatriated to the Mac. I've followed his foot-wetting into OS X over these last several years, and seeing his home computer running in OS X was a welcome telltale sight indeed.

Walking around SoHo and Greenwich village, you are pleasantly innundated with Apple's new "Switcher" ad campaign. Simple in concept, the ads have a nice-looking but normal person with a look of contempt and a caption like "When my PC didn't work, I used to think it was because of me". The "Switcher" campaign is going to work well, and ex-Windows users are going to be some of the happiest of the OS X lot, and I'll tell you my theory on this:

When NeXT computer ported what is now Cocoa to run on top of Windows 95/NT in 1994, Windows users were given a taste of this new "everything is an object and you can drag and drop data" and all the other cool user interface concepts that were pioneered on the NeXT Computer. Once running on Intel hardware, these ideas were inevitably copied by MicroSoft and other vendors. If you can look behind the dreadful UI color schemes in Windows, many OS X ideas are part and parcel of Windows. So I contend that PC users will actually feel quite at home using Mac OS X, since they don't carry any "not like Macos 9" baggage. My guess is Apple's next campaign will be www.apple.com/9/to/X/Switch!

Since my grandfather lived in New York City, I have a lifelong connection with the $24 rock, including knowing downtown Manhattan before the World Trade Center. But for most of my life, the main anchor of Tribeca was those towers. Just as an amputee is said to have a 'phantom limb', the same effect occurs in our perception of the City, and if you fly into Laguardia, it hits you like a brick. I made a mental note to make a pilgrimage to Ground Zero during MacWorld NYC, since it's only 6 blocks from my cousin Todd Stone's loft and studio.

But living that far downtown had farreaching consequences for Todd. A lifelong landscape painter, he had been painting those towers in early September 2001, and he was in his studio making photographic studies on 9/11. Out of that day came Witness <www.ToddStone.com> : an e-Gallery of watercolors in elegy to those who died that day. Check it out - the site was made on OS X with native Cocoa apps.

After an intense week of schmoozing and finally seeing the advent of the user adoption of OS X, it was time to kick back and enjoy a show at Radio City. Not just any show in that incredibly exquisite venue, but the String Cheese Incident - the Rocky Mountain jam band that's wielding at least one of the Grateful Dead's spiritual torches. Since I have naively grown accustomed to seeing SCI in venues that barely fit 250 people, this was phenomenal! To give you an idea of the energy, before the show, I was on a balcony overlooking the huge foyer. In an impromptu release of all the stress of the week and year, I gave a wild, New Mexico style hoot as loud as I could, echoing off six stories of mirrors and marble. Spontaneously about 1000 people hooted and hollered in return for what seemed like a pretty long time. Wow!

The show [and after parties and parties after that] were memorable, but wandering around Tribeca at 4 am, I recalled my promised pilgramage to the WTC. Approaching Ground Zero at that eerie time of day, the omnipresent construction lighting illuminated the moisture and dust above the biggest hole I've ever seen in Manhattan. A native New Yorker and I began circumambulating the site, totally alone inside the phantom limb. By the time our circuit was almost over, we were heavy with grief. Then, in this miraculous sort of way, we approached an amazingly verdant park, covered in Irish clover and ancient stones. The sprinklers sent a cool mist over the city streets and our weary bodies, and I swear I'm looking at Ireland.

Reality is stranger than fiction - I was actually gazing upon a piece of Ireland! Stones from each County were brought along with a complete stone ruin to commemorate the lives of those who lived and died during the Irish Potato Famine. I reflected back on the struggles we've had surviving the OS X Adoption Famine, and realized hunger would soon be just a memory worth preserving. As the city awakes, I can leave town knowing that Mac OS X's time has come. In a world where software technologies live and die so quickly, and in a fantastic twist of fate and incredibly focused energy, NeXTStep-OpenStep-Rhapsody-Cocoa has risen to be the most copied and hopefully one day, the most used, operating system in this part of the universe.


Andrew C. Stone, chief architect at Stone Design <www.stone.com>, develops low cost publish to web, print or PDF applicatoins for Mac OS X, and has patiently awaited the adoption of OS X since 1989.

 
AAPL
$524.94
Apple Inc.
+5.93
MSFT
$40.01
Microsoft Corpora
-0.39
GOOG
$536.10
Google Inc.
-20.44

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

VMware Fusion 6.0.3 - Run Windows apps a...
VMware Fusion allows you to create a Virtual Machine on your Mac and run Windows (including Windows 8.1) and Windows software on your Mac. Run your favorite Windows applications alongside Mac... Read more
Tweetbot 1.5.1 - Popular iOS twitter cli...
Tweetbot is a full-featured OS X Twitter client with a lot of personality. Whether it's the meticulously-crafted interface, sounds and animation, or features like multiple timelines and column views... Read more
Mac DVDRipper Pro 4.1.7 - Copy, backup,...
Mac DVDRipper Pro is the DVD backup solution that lets you protect your DVDs from scratches, save your batteries by reading your movies from your hard disk, manage your collection with just a few... Read more
PDFpenPro 6.2 - Advanced PDF toolkit for...
PDFpenPro allows users to edit PDF's easily. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Create... Read more
PDFpen 6.2 - Edit and annotate PDFs with...
PDFpen allows users to easily edit PDF's. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Features... Read more
Monolingual 1.5.9 - Remove unwanted OS X...
Monolingual is a program for removing unnecesary language resources from OS X, in order to reclaim several hundred megabytes of disk space. It requires a 64-bit capable Intel-based Mac and at least... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty 1.1.1.180...
Download the patch by launching the Starcraft II game and downloading it through the Battle.net connection within the app. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty is a strategy game played in real-time. You... Read more
Sibelius 7.5.0 - Music notation solution...
Sibelius is the world's best-selling music notation software for Mac. It is as intuitive to use as a pen, yet so powerful that it does most things in less than the blink of an eye. The demo includes... Read more
Typinator 5.9 - Speedy and reliable text...
Typinator turbo-charges your typing productivity. Type a little. Typinator does the rest. We've all faced projects that require repetitive typing tasks. With Typinator, you can store commonly used... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

This Week at 148Apps: April 14-18, 2014
Spring Into Our App Reviews   | Read more »
Have a Special Dead Trigger 2 Easter Bas...
Have a Special Dead Trigger 2 Easter Basket Full of Goodies, Courtesy of Madfinger Games Posted by Rob Rich on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] Dead Trigger 2 | Read more »
Almost All of Playdek’s Library is on Sa...
Almost All of Playdek’s Library is on Sale Right Now, and You Should Check it Out Posted by Rob Rich on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] Playdek has released quite a few great iOS ports of board and card games over the years, and now most of them... | Read more »
Zynga Launches Brand New Farmville Exper...
Zynga Launches Brand New Farmville Experience with Farmville 2: Country Escape Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
David. Review
David. Review By Cata Modorcea on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: MINIMALISTIC IN A DIFFERENT WAYUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad David is a minimalistic game wrapped inside of a soothing atmosphere in which the hero... | Read more »
Eyefi Unveils New Eyefi Cloud Service Th...
Eyefi Unveils New Eyefi Cloud Service That Allows Users to Share Media Across Personal Devices Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair...
Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair Review By Jennifer Allen on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: STEADY ADVENTURINGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Treading a safe path, Tales from the Dragon Mountain: The Lair is a... | Read more »
Yahoo Updates Flickr App with Advanced E...
Yahoo Updates Flickr App with Advanced Editing Features and More Posted by Tre Lawrence on April 18th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
My Incredible Body - A Kid's App to...
My Incredible Body - A Kid's App to Learn about the Human Body 1.1.00 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.1.00 (iTunes) Description: Wouldn’t it be cool to look inside yourself and see what was going on... | Read more »
Trials Frontier Review
Trials Frontier Review By Carter Dotson on April 18th, 2014 Our Rating: :: A ROUGH LANDINGUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Trials Frontier finally brings the famed stunt racing franchise to mobile, but how much does its... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Deal Alert! 13-inch MacBook Pro on sale for $...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $999.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Their price is $200 off MSRP. Price is valid... Read more
Free HopTo 2.2 Helps Enhance Your Productivit...
The HopTo app helps you do more on your iPad by providing more and easier adaccess to files and documents. Version 2.2 adds Egnyte and HopTo’s Mac OSX File Connector. If you already have the hopTo... Read more
National Distracted Driving Awareness Month:...
As the country recognizes National Distracted Driving Awareness Month, Sprint is reminding wireless consumers to focus on driving while behind the wheel, to not text or email while driving, and to... Read more
13-inch 2.4GHz Retina MacBook Pro available f...
Abt has the 13″ 2.4GHz 128GB Retina MacBook Pro available for $1229 including free shipping. Their price is $70 off MSRP. Read more
iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP this we...
Best Buy has iMacs on sale for up to $160 off MSRP for a limited time. Choose free home shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Prices are valid for online orders only, in-store... Read more
iPad Airs on sale this weekend for up to $100...
Best Buy has WiFi iPad Airs on sale for $50 off MSRP and WiFi + Cellular iPad Airs on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store for a limited time, with prices now starting at $449. Choose free... Read more
Apple restocks refurbished Mac minis starting...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished Mac minis for up to $150 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 2.5GHz Mac... Read more
Hyundai Brings Apple CarPlay To The 2015 Sona...
Hyundai Motor America has announced it will bring Apple CarPlay functionality to the 2015 Sonata. CarPlay is pitched as a smarter, safer and easier way to use iPhone in the car and gives iPhone users... Read more
Updated iPads Coming Sooner Than We Had Thoug...
MacRumors, cites KGI securities analyst Ming Chi Kuo, well-respected as an Apple product prognisticator, saying that Apple will introduce an upgraded iPad Air and iPad mini in 2014/Q3, meaning the... Read more
Toshiba Unveils New High And Low End Laptop M...
Toshiba has announced new laptop models covering both the high-end and low-end of the notebook computer spectrum. Toshiba 4K Ultra HD Laptop Toshiba’s new Satellite P55t features one of the world’s... Read more

Jobs Board

Position Opening at *Apple* - Apple (United...
…customers purchase our products, you're the one who helps them get more out of their new Apple technology. Your day in the Apple Store is filled with a range of Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Inc. Research Data Specialist - Appl...
…of Worldwide Market Research & Intelligence. The team is responsible for conducting Apple branded consumer market research. It is also responsible for analyzing data Read more
*Apple* Automotive Parts Department position...
Apple Automotive is one of the fastest growing dealer…and it shows. Consider making the switch to the Apple Automotive Group today! At Apple Automotive, we Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.