August 16, 2006

Taking a shot at Leopard

I've just finishing having a play with Leopard - OS X (10.5) WWDC Beta.

My honest opinion (and anybody that knows me knows that I'm a BIG Apple fan, in fact I can't remember the last time I was disappointed by Apple) is that Leopard is really boring. I read John's post over at Daring Fireball, taking a shot at Leander Kahney for complaining about how boring the WWDC keynote was, but seriously, the WWDC release of 10.5 is not worth playing with for more then 2 minutes. There's nothing in it that I can honestly say to myself I'm excited about. I digged and digged and digged. I opened EVERY System Preference in the hope of finding something new, something to get excited about but alas.

Before Tiger (10.4) was released I got hold of a beta copy and installed it. I was really excited, and stopped anyone who would listen to tell them about Spotlight and Dashboard - two key features you could explain to the average user and get 'wow, that looks cool'. With Leopard I wouldn't dare bother. Only the nutter Mac enthusiast (and maybe some developers according to John) would raise an eyebrow at the new features. Core animation might be great but DO something with it!

Time machine - great idea and I'm sure lots of users will appreciate all the special effects. But seriously, how exciting is restoring a lost file. And is it worth the $150 that Leopard will cost when I can either subscribe to .Mac and get 'Backup' or buy another of the many great options out there.

Ok, so lets move on to the 'New' features in Mail. Notes, To-dos and 'Stationary'. Yawn, yawn and yawn. All nice to have but certainly not 'Killer'. Make Mail 3x quicker at accessing large mailboxes and you might get my attention. Add some more sophistication to its rule filtering and I might get excited. But stationary? Seriously, I think Outlook had stationary back in the late 1990's.

The last 'GUI' feature that Apple is raving about is 'Spaces'. Again, interesting but not a show stopper. How much excited can you get from moving screens from one virtual window to another. I know, great productivity improvement - Still, it gets a big 'Whatever!' from me. And to top it off there are about 5 apps already available that do it now. Of course Apple do it better but it's hardly 'innovation'

So, what about those 'Top Secret' features that Steve didn't preview. Well, all I can say is they better be exciting and worth shouting about. In fact I hope they are so good that the 10 or so you've previewed this month actually drop off the 'Leopard Features List' - In my opinion they should.