Will Apple Get This One Right

Perhaps this page sould be moved, I don't think DeleteWhenCooked applies, but perhaps RenameWhenStale? would be an appropriate response? Much of the information on this page is fantastically outdated.

MacOsx is out now - it is Right already??

MacOsx has been out for quite a while now, and I've been using it since the day we got the public beta. What of the contents in this page is still relevant? I think I'd say they got this one right.

Pink, Taligent, Copland, Rhapsody...

MacOsxIsUnixBased, and will be released to the public RealSoonNow. Meanwhile some people ask:

How do we know that bone-headed AppleComputer won't cancel it like all the other "advanced operating systems" they have built and canceled in the last 10 years? They're still using an OS that doesn't even have pre-emptive multi-tasking or memory protection.

-- sg

Actually, I don't think they ever actually built most of those advanced OS's. I remember giving a set of talks at Apple, right after Apple bought NeXT; some largish group brought me in as a NextStep expert to explain the basics.

After the second talk, someone came up to me and said NeXTSTEP seemed ever so much better than the OS Apple was planning to build.

"Planning ?' I asked.

"Well.... [confides] yeah. They're still in the DesignPhase."

The thing was already 2 years late. And they just were about almost ready to start coding ...

-- WilliamGrosso

I confess to being an Apple skeptic. The death of Newton was the last nail in the coffin I thought. Mac OS 8-9 is just the pits - a desktop without preemptive multitasking is just the saddest thing you could ever see in the year 2000. But I have MacOsx DP4 in use on several of my developers desks, and, despite the hiccups in schedule and in alpha quality code, I have to say it looks like a real winner to me. Gorgeous, slick, open, and focused. If it's marketed right (fat chance?) this thing could command a lot of mindshare - take the diehard apple enthusiasts, plus the FreeBsd and linux folk who need a quality GUI, plus the many, many disgruntled Solaris users who need a quality server, and then start nibbling at the NT crowd - it could work. Would I place money on it ... well, let's see it actually get released first ... -- PeterMerel

You mean it isn't your money?

Well, we have all switched those G4s to run LinuxPpc and we are all happy as clams now. -- PeterMerel's mentor

Too right, Sam. And it's not just OSs: SqueakSmalltalk, CocoaWorld the list goes on...

This is the big one, though. If they dump OsX, there goes the company.

Thanks for the validation. Agreed. Here's hoping they make it right this time.

I'm positive that this one won't get dumped. I mean the Developer previews are out and people are actually making apps for it. From what I've heard from those who've used it so far, is that, whilst it's far from complete (mainly the 'classic' environment), it is actually usable. Which to me at least, makes me sure they won't dump it. -- MatthewTheobalds

Plus they read Wiki. How can they ignore the striking consensus here between a super smart fifteen year old, with all his development career ahead of him, and some tired old hacks like us? Er, I mean globally respected software experts like us. The future's bright, the future's MacOsx.

I wrote: Do they really read Wiki? To which someone replied: Half-sarcastic tone duly noted. I now reply: I wasn't being sarcastic, I'm interested as to whether they actually do read Wiki. I know a few lurk in some of the Mac newsgroups, but was interested about here. Does anyone know? -- MatthewTheobalds

I was trying to indicate that the "plus they read wiki" comment was sarcastic. Read it again, you can't miss it. :-)

Q: How many of the "big" failures did SteveJobs preside over? Successes?

Well, there was the Apple III and the Lisa ... but it was some achievement to create the SkunkWorks for the Mac to turn Apple around after those two. All power to the guy. (Well not literally, but a bigger share of Gates' would be fine.)

The AppleNewton got killed soon after SteveJobs was in place again. Some consider this a failure, some not.

Pretty much all of the revolutionary software projects that got cancelled were during the Steve interregnum. PowerMail?, OpenDoc, Copland, the list goes on and on and on... My feeling is that software strategy at Apple has been badly managed because they had people who know nothing about software running the company, and they were letting clueless engineers drive. As much as I think Steve is a jerk personally, he does understand software, and he seems to know what customers want (or at least what they will buy). Steve is also willing to pursue goals with an obsessive fervor, and he's able to infect those around him with the same passion (or they get fired). I expect Mac OS X will ship January next year, just like they are saying. I just hope they fix the UI problems before then!

Its been a while now - I guess Apple did get it right.


Why didn't the AppleMacintosh dominate the IBM PC when introduced?

Apple dropped the ball. It failed in the courts to protect its investment in look and feel. It introduced major product lines (Newton) irrelevant to its core technologies. It failed to partner with IBM. When MicroSoft rebadged CP/M and sold it as DOS, the OS of all the IBM PCs, MicroSoft leveraged IBM's then total lock on business computing to vault into massive mindshare. It then led IBM to believe that OS features alone would sell OSes while meanwhile pouring all energy into its application suite, especially MicrosoftWord, which was trivial to pirate but you had to run Windows to run it ... Apple had no way into that market and the rest was history.

Ancient history now, of course ...

The upsides of Apple: it had a better technology than IBM computers

The downsides


The success of a product is less to do with its merits than the marketing that presents it.

Alternate conclusion:

The people who loved graphics bought Apple. The people who had a job to do, like enter info into forms all day, bought IBM.

Apple today

Apple is still around making FlatScreeniMacs, MacOsx, the iBook and Powerbooks, the G5 cubes, iTunes and the iTunes music store. All successes. In particular, iTunes is the hit software of 2003 and SteveJobs is again the darling of the business press. Plus a G5-based supercomputer running MacOsx is the 3rd fastest in the world, and at a bargain price. (See also http://www.vt.edu/news/showitem.php?id=1075322647.)

Microsoft no longer holds any shares in AppleComputer.

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