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Open Thread: Leopard Preview

Apple - Apple - Mac OS X - Leopard Sneak Peek

Like most of you, I'm keeping an eye on today's previewed features of the upcoming "Leopard" (OS X 10.5) release.

Looks like some interesting ideas -- many of which, as usual, seem inspired by existing third-party products.

I think I'm most intrigued so far by the idea of "to-do" functionality from within Mail.app (thanks for the tip, Matt); let's hope that also means I can deep link to a given email from my iCal task list. I also welcome the concept of built-in email templates -- although I'm kind of bummed that they seem more focused on execrable 1999-style HTML emails than on the kind of functional time-savers found in the peerless MailTemplate.

To be honest, on first blush -- and I'm sure there's much more to come by the time of release -- this feels a bit cute and a little light on really revolutionary stuff (the long overdue promise of something like Time Machine notwithstanding). Stuff like (yet. more.) iLife integration is handy enough for the notional Swithcher and Grandpa Joe, but in general I guess I'm hoping for some serious power-user improvements to the core functionality. Maybe that's just me.

What do you think? What's "Yeah!" and what's "Meh?" Anybody else holding out hope for some really deep Finder rewriting and more functional iCal updates?

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Sean's picture

There definitely weren't as many...

There definitely weren't as many "WOW" moments as in past OSX update keynotes, but, this being the developer conference, I think it showcased a lot of tools developers will be able to use in their own apps.

I recently figured out that this is why PhotoBooth exists. If they just tried to push that you, as a dev, could apply effects to photos, nobody would have cared. But make it an app (for the kiddies) to showcase those capabilities and you might get more press, someone else notices, and the Core Effects get pulled into 3rd party apps.

Now you can do this with live video instead of just still pictures? Cool! Useful? On it's own...maybe. Using iChat as a showcase for these features and letting developers work from there...that's where it's at.

So, I think what we're seeing is Apple spending their time making the core of OSX fantastic and then letting the rest of the dev community do the rest--which they've done very well for quite a while. Smart on Apple's part. Instead of trying to do everything in a mediocre fashion, they'll do their own stuff well and let the market decide what 3rd-party apps are the best.

It worked for eBay when they opened up their API. It's working for Google now. Instead of trying to build all of the best software possible, build the best tools possible and allow your rabid fanbase to sell your OS and hardware for you.




An Oblique Strategy:
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