First impressions of Tiger…

A few first impressions of Apple’s upcoming Operating System: Tiger:

  • Spotlight – basically an Apple native verstion of Launchbar with a few self-evidently nice features (searching Mail). After using Launchbar for a while I can state without question that it feels like part of the OS after a while, so if the Apple version has the similar ability to run it without using the mouse, then I’ll be pretty happy. I doubt Objective Development will be, of course…
  • iChat AV – the new version allows you to conference call ten people and video chat with loads of people too. That’s pretty cool. I’m pretty bloody impressed by that. It’s going to be pretty awesome and totally what I’ve been hoping they’d do. It fits in really well with some other thinking I’ve been doing…
  • Safari RSS – sites with RSS feeds are marked when you go to them, which is cool, and then you can subscribe to them directly through the interface. I’m not convinced by their interaction design here – I suspect I’ll keep using NetNewsWire for the time being – but it’s certainly a positive step that can’t help but make RSS penetration…
  • Dashboard – basically this one is a fucking rip off of Konfabulator and I’m pretty pissed off about it. I’m not a particular fan of the paradigm, but I don’t think that’s pertinent – unlike RSS feeds and the Launchbar knock-off there doesn’t seem to me to be really any reason for building this into the OS, it’s not particularly interesting or powerful and it really does seem just like nicking someone else’s ideas and lobbing them into your Operating System because you can. Harsh, Steve. Harsh…
  • Automator – as far as I can tell this is a GUI for AppleScript, allowing people like me who get scared by even the simplest of scripting languages to automate tasks quickly and easily without ending up dribbling into a cup. My personal jury is out on how useful it’ll actually be on a day-to-day basis but that doesn’t mean that I’m not impressed. AppleScript for the rest of us?
  • VoiceOver – a spoken interface for the Mac. I’m not really qualified to comment on the technology, but certainly the aspiration is good and important and I don’t doubt it’ll serve Apple well in cracking governmental markets. My only quibble – I’m not so impressed by the little white man they made in Illustrator to put in the logo. He looks a bit lame and … bendy …
  • .Mac sync – a revised version of iSync with a simpler UI and apparently some developer hooks. It still pisses me off that you have to have a .Mac account to do any syncing across the internet. I can’t quite believe that function is worth the $60 a year, nor do I think it’s even vaguely conceivable that you couldn’t explain to someone how to set up a server to handle that stuff themselves… Seems like a slightly shitty attempt to drill money out of you in an entirely random way…
  • Better Unix – neat! I think!
  • XCode 2.0 – wish I understood it!
  • System Wide Metadata Indexing – this is seriously cool and API’d up the wazoo so hopefully it will start to lay the foundations of the Finder technologies of the future…

All in all the big news for the operating system is the integration of search and metadata technologies into the heart of the Operating System. The Safari RSS and iChat AV stuff is pretty cool too and everything else looks like tweaks, gimmicks or outright rip-offs. I wonder when it’s out?

17 replies on “First impressions of Tiger…”

It looks like itís not going to be available until the first half of 2005. Thatís what was said in the Keynote, anyway.

If you like Launchbar, but would prefer not to have to move your hands from the keyboard, you might want to take a look at Quicksilver. It operates on the same principle, but seems to have a wider search net, better iTunes integration and can be operated using keyboard controls alone. It’s also free and open source.

The interesting advantage that Spotlight has over Launchbar or Quicksilver is it’s use of the system wide metadata indexing. It’s apparently integrated in HFS+, just like BeFS used to have it. So we have metadata, at last : goodbye files, hello information.

I’m looking forward to this update. I’ve recently switched to Mac after years and years of Windows HELL! It’s been 3 months now and I haven’t looked back since! Currently own a 17-inch powerbook and love it!

Couldn’t agree more about the Konfabulator rip off… it’s nice to see Apple robbing their own developer community yet again. is this gonna be the future of Apple’s “innovation” from now on?

The new features in XCode 2.0 look great — the visual modelling tools in particular. As someone who’d dabbled with WebObjects (and hence Project Builder and Interface Builder) a few years ago, firing up XCode when my new job landed me in an OSX-only environment felt like coming home. This biggest hole was Object Modeller, which allowed me to bridge the gap between my database tables and my object-based code. Hopefully this new aspect of XCode will fill that requirement.
I’m even relieved about Automator. Rest assured, Tom, that seasoned professionals get that dribble feeling when faced with a new AppleScript dictionary for an application they’ve never automated before. I guess its true practicability, though, will depend on how easy it is for application creators to make their own tools Automator-friendly.
And the syndicated feed support within Safari can only help encourage sites of all types to start syndicating content. It’s already enabled me to say to one sceptic, “Look! It’s not about giving other sites access to your copyrighted news, it’s about getting your news delivered in a more authoritative way!” without being dismissed as a gibbering loon…

Well. Most of the “ripped off” stuff are old Be and Next things in a new form. It’s not a surprise that both Next and Be Inc pepole is developing Tiger.
The Konfabulator “rip” is pretty obvious in how IT works, and looks with Konfabulator. But the technology is not that different frÂn the “Objects” from the Next days, and is pretty common in every OS. Longhorn has them, KDE, Gnome, WindowMaker, BeOS, QNX, OS/2 etc etc..
But i agree that i was pretty shocked by how Apple did this. At least they could have managed to be a more bit creative and original.
LaunchBar is another idea from BeOS.. And like i said, there are pepole from Be working on OS X…
The circle is closed. Old technology returns. 🙂

Yes, the iSync/.mac tie-in is annoying. But Steve did mention that the Sync engine now has APIs (and IIRC the sync engine is in the OS now and not just iSync) and that all the developers got an SDK for it. We’ll have to wait and see what that actually means, but my guess is that we’ll be seeing sync tools for everything from WebDAV accounts to FTP. That’s what I’m hoping at least.

You are the only person I have seen who hit the nail on the head here. Is it a ripoff, yes, sure, but more importantly what is the point of integrating this into the OS? It is like Microsoft going after the some small niche market. So many people didn’t even use Konfabulator and nobody switched to mac for Konfabulator. So Apple actually lost here, I don’t see people switching to Apple just for these features.
To me the most interesting new feature is definitely search, that’s something which is really useful.

Easy tiger
No it’s not about ‘tiger’ Henman – but Tiger, the new Mac OS X.
Also – unpleasant moments cause by my new folding bike.
ATTN HULVER! When I click on ‘Ignore Story’, shouldn’t I be redirected to the Diaries/Homepage instead of back to the sto…

It is not a fucking rip off of Konfabulator. God damn, am I sick of hearing that shit. You guys are all the same morons who said the iPod mini wouldn’t sell for shit and was overpriced. STFU

I don’t agree that it’s a rip off of Konfabulator. The widgets in Dashboard are actually made like small webpages or webapplications in java/xml/html. It opens up for a lot of interesting applications.

He ripped off dashboard from…the Mac:
” would be the desk accessories from the original 1984 Macintosh ó conceived by Bud Tribble and engineered (mostly) by Andy Hertzfeld.”

I used to think that dashboard is a ripoff of Konfabulator too, but after reading the excellent article on Daring Fireball I now realise what a load of FUD this is. Mind you if it was my product going down the pan, I’d be kicking up a fuss too.

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