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Why people like Apple stuff.

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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby total_douche on Thu Sep 22, 2016 2:59 pm

blackmarket wrote:
mookie1010 wrote:
blackmarket wrote:
mookie1010 wrote:I was going through windows machines every 2-3 years before I bought my mac almost 5 years ago. If you want to buy a windows machine that has comparable hardware, you can, but you're not saving much money, and you're locked into windows, which is also inferior to OSx for my money.


If you were buying new Windows machines every two to three years, you weren't buying quality products. Blame yourself for that, not an operating system.


I feel that I addressed this particular criticism...while there may be quality windows machines, they are few and far between. And they also cost as much as Apple products, which in the end made the decision easier for me. I apologize if I didn't make that clear originally.


I used Windows exclusively for years. I disagree. My wife and I have two Windows machines that are seven and nine years old, still used daily. The oldest machine is a Thinkpad T61, which might be on par with MacBooks from 2007, but I think in my configuration it slightly lesser where specs and hardware are concerned. The other notebook is a Dell 1440 from 2009, which is a piece of crap hardware-wise, but still runs and used daily for our child's cartoons. I never bought the best Windows machines. They all have lasted for a very long time and have worked well. I take care of my equipment. That may be part of it.


You're missing the point; Macs use PIO bumblebee caps and 50s-style wiring for superior tone. That's about as sensible as Mac-v-PC debates ever get. Mac people are the rough equivalent of Gibson people: they've been sold a constructed idea that the same components put into a box with the Apple logo on it inherently deliver a premium product by weight of comparison. This wouldn't be a problem if PC people didn't get defensive. Mac OS/iOS and Windows (and Linux, for that matter) all basically work the same for the end user, people who only ever used one can easily learn the other, and some software works with one or the other, sometimes both. Pick your poison, it's all the same Chinese PCBs inside anyway.

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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Janeway on Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:29 pm

^ pcb '16!!!

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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Anthony Flack on Sun Sep 25, 2016 5:10 pm

total_douche wrote:Mac OS/iOS and Windows (and Linux, for that matter) all basically work the same for the end user, people who only ever used one can easily learn the other


Well, they do now. But Windows was shit before they started copying all of OSX's moves, and smartphones were shit before the iPhone. Tablets weren't even a thing (remember how people laughed at the iPad, calling it a "giant phone"?)

However that was all a decade or more ago and they've all caught up now.

Similarly, practically every single innovation in video game controller design originated with Nintendo R&D, but has subsequently been adopted by everybody else.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby blackmarket on Sun Sep 25, 2016 5:49 pm

Anthony Flack wrote:
total_douche wrote:Mac OS/iOS and Windows (and Linux, for that matter) all basically work the same for the end user, people who only ever used one can easily learn the other


Well, they do now. But Windows was shit before they started copying all of OSX's moves


Windows XP was great for its time. Windows 7 is still great. Neither are similar to OSX.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Anthony Flack on Sun Sep 25, 2016 6:18 pm

Windows has been borrowing features from Apple long before XP. Original Windows was straight-up dogshit compared to the Macintosh.

Even back in the XP days (an operating system I used for many years), I well remember OS9 offering nice, convenient, previously unheard-of things like fast indexed file searches, two-finger scrolling on touchpads and in-browser previews of everything (even pdfs and psds) which didn't start to appear in Windows until Win7. Win10 still won't preview psds.

The Windows control panel meanwhile has been a horror show right up until Win10.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby total_douche on Mon Sep 26, 2016 7:10 am

Anthony Flack wrote:
total_douche wrote:Mac OS/iOS and Windows (and Linux, for that matter) all basically work the same for the end user, people who only ever used one can easily learn the other


Well, they do now. But Windows was shit before they started copying all of OSX's moves, and smartphones were shit before the iPhone. Tablets weren't even a thing (remember how people laughed at the iPad, calling it a "giant phone"?)

However that was all a decade or more ago and they've all caught up now.

Similarly, practically every single innovation in video game controller design originated with Nintendo R&D, but has subsequently been adopted by everybody else.

Windows and Mac OS have been functionally almost identical since long before OSX was a thought in someone's head (there is some murkiness about Xerox here, as well as a multimillion-dollar lawsuit over some monkey business Microsoft pulled when they were developing applications for the original Mac). Pick your poison. It doesn't matter. If you like Macs, great. I like Macs, too, and have since I was a kid. I also like Windows and Linux. Arguing that any of them is better is the exact same as arguing over whether orange drop or bumblebeee caps give a Les Paul "more tone."
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Janeway on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:11 am

i like pc gaming and the mac quack..
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Janeway on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:20 am

.. and the fact that i lost my purse at my friend's bday party so now that's right bimbos, i'm gonna be back in the flipphone life again :D

senior citizen cell phone plan, here we go..
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby total_douche on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:25 am

Pfft, I still have a landline.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby greg on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:37 am

Somewhat ironically, my headphone jack socket broke. Iphone 4s, 3+ years old.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby blackmarket on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:43 am

Anthony Flack wrote:Windows has been borrowing features from Apple long before XP. Original Windows was straight-up dogshit compared to the Macintosh.

Even back in the XP days (an operating system I used for many years), I well remember OS9 offering nice, convenient, previously unheard-of things like fast indexed file searches, two-finger scrolling on touchpads and in-browser previews of everything (even pdfs and psds) which didn't start to appear in Windows until Win7. Win10 still won't preview psds.

The Windows control panel meanwhile has been a horror show right up until Win10.


I am not an expert in early OS designs, but seems like Windows, OSX, and Linux all influence each other at different times. This is how markets operate. OSX has always had substandard keyboard access to their OS. Windows and probably Linux have ben pushing Apple forward incrementally to increase access via keyboard commands. They still lag behind in that area. Some of the window management in El Capitan seems to have been influenced by things available in Windows since 7. Influence and "borrowing" goes both ways.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Anthony Flack on Mon Sep 26, 2016 5:20 pm

My point is that the influence and borrowing throughout the 80s, 90s and 2000s was almost all flowing from Apple to Microsoft. Apple was the innovator in UI design and has done more to shape the appearance of desktop, phone and tablet interfaces than any other company. Not by accident, since they staked their claim early on as a company that differentiated itself by being a cut above in terms of design.

However that work has now been done and Apple will continue to fall behind unless they can figure out something new that needs designing.

Yes, their commitment to design elegance sometimes results in them being stubbornly reductive and doing things like trying to get people to use a single-button mouse long past the point where it was clear that single-button mice are a dead end. I think Apple have done a great job in forcing everybody to raise their UI game over the years and I also think it's a good thing that Apple's design innovations are no longer restricted to Apple products because Apple can also be a real pain in the ass, particularly when it comes to telling users what they CAN'T do.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Anthony Flack on Mon Sep 26, 2016 5:42 pm

total_douche wrote:Windows and Mac OS have been functionally almost identical since long before OSX was a thought in someone's head (there is some murkiness about Xerox here, as well as a multimillion-dollar lawsuit over some monkey business Microsoft pulled when they were developing applications for the original Mac). Pick your poison. It doesn't matter. If you like Macs, great. I like Macs, too, and have since I was a kid. I also like Windows and Linux. Arguing that any of them is better is the exact same as arguing over whether orange drop or bumblebeee caps give a Les Paul "more tone."


I'm not arguing which is better.

I'm saying that Apple led in UI design from the 80s to the 2000s and have basically done more to influence the UI design of modern desktops, tablets and phones than any other company. It's hard to remember now but there was a time when OS9 was just miles ahead of Windows in terms of presenting a user experience that is geared towards the consumer, not the engineer. Likewise, pretty much every single phone on the market today is based on the iPhone. But that work has been done now.

And yup, so much of what went into the Macintosh was taken straight from Xerox's R&D division, who came up with the whole business of mice, pointers and windows to begin with. Xerox, much to its own R&D department's dismay, didn't seem to give much of a shit about their ideas and when Apple asked to see what they were up to, they just showed them everything. And Apple went "thanks very much, I guess if you guys aren't going to use these ideas to revolutionise computer UI design then we will, LOL"

Microsoft's strategy, by contrast, was to establish a monopoly position wherever possible and if anybody didn't like their UI design that was tough shit, so long as it halfway worked.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby bishopdante on Mon Sep 26, 2016 5:45 pm

Anthony Flack wrote:
total_douche wrote:Mac OS/iOS and Windows (and Linux, for that matter) all basically work the same for the end user, people who only ever used one can easily learn the other


I would disagree. Apples and oranges. They are *not* the same.

The GUI interface language of mouse, windows and buttons, that was developed at Xerox PARC.

Apple brought a concept of mass marketing computer technology by concentrating on ease of use rather than pure technological power. That only really happened with Steve jobs at the helm, in two one-decade long stints.

Microsoft had a different strategy, which is harder to describe, and I would argue they got so big that the actual problem is the company has a very cloudy sense of purpose, and that the only feature that is consistent is owning a big piece of the market share and turning design faults into opportunities for a lucrative service/maintenance ecosystem, "Microsoft certified service providers", and loads of broken compatibility. Microsoft are also notorious for co-opting anything innovative and successful, either buying out or copying, complete with hostile lawsuits, and quickly mainstream releasing any new application or technology as a botched lock-in attempt, leveraging their control over system compatibility via their OS. Whether Web browsers (MS scammed the authors of "spyglass" by giving them a percentage of the proceeds of releasing it as "Microsoft Internet explorer", a sum of money which turned out to be zero because they bundled it "free"... until the authors sued that is). windows and mouse graphical interface (DOS > windows 95, Microsoft as reparations had to finance apple to prop them back up, nearly becoming the only OS maker on the face of the planet), video codecs (bundled versions of windows media player which sabotaged the function of QuickTime MPEG). There is a long list, of very consistent moves. The dirty tricks landed Microsoft in anticompetition courts and regularly constituted sabotage. Not good for users, forcing broken crap on them. Most of the users had a "we don't know" attitude and assumed they were just "useless", blaming their own ineptitude, allowing the abuse. Bill Gates finally got booted out after two decades of horrific dirty tricks and basically having a season ticket to the USA and EU anticompetition courts. Now runs a multi-billion dollar "developing world / tropical medicine" charity. Yes that is scary.

I will never forgive that toxic company for turning the mainstream of people away from the idea of confident and secure use of computers just like there is nothing weird about using a pencil. Bill Gates has given people a lot of anxiety and learned helplessness issues, and as a "computers guy" a lot of the hell in my life has been directly attributable to the fear of failure and bullying sabotage that windows computers have embodied in most people's lives, and the assumption that I am some sort of superhuman to be in a position of confidence, rather than just it being a question of being bothered to put the hours in. Many people have been traumatised by the dysfunctional OS, and got into terrible paranoid and avoidant habits, stopping people from being in the positive habit of using automation to cut down drudgery, and information technology to handle information reliably and objectively, without drudgery. I have been subjected to many abuses and not trusted many times because of the bad experiences, and the mistaken belief that a windows computer is much the same as any other computer, and that I am simply lying when I suggest the technology is far more reliable than I am (does not need sleep etc), and that they really should commit the time to learning to use them properly rather than hounding me for instant results by calling my mobile phone.

Of course, Microsoft are just a predatory corporation. It is nothing special. Many companies behave the same.

At this point I would suggest that for typical lay-user tasks involving mouse and buttons, Linux should not be left out of your thinking. OSX, iOS or Windows, they are not really to be trusted in the longterm, being commercial entities rather than languages in an ecosystem. All it takes is some heavy handed moves by a few managers and everybody could be in a world of pain. Tim Cook's apple just tightens the belt, dumbs it down, moves sysadmin to behind the genius bar and out of users' hands, and shifts the boxes. Millions of 'em. Like washing machines. While brain-draining apple's talent into a billion-dollar wild goose chase to build the apple car, or "project titan", as though the personal computer is now a closed book. A decade more of that and the apple software ecosytem will be in a sorry state.

OSX at this point really is a luxury desktop UNIX, and a lot of the geekier software runs on either linux or BSD (or OSX) without having to be rewritten. Apple dumped the idea of a proprietary OS in the late '90s.

When the Linux crew perfect Wine, the windows runtime emulator, enabling windows software to run on anything 'NIX with acceptable performance, that'll be the end of the microshaft death grip on users. That is already working better and better.

WindowsNT family, under the hood, it is a labyrinth of sticking plasters and bugs, many of which look suspiciously like malicious features. Unreliable. That might mean the user interface looks similar, but what it does and how it does it, that's a windows thing.

Past decade my macs generally will run stable and bug free without being rebooted for months on end. Same with a good flavour of Linux. Reliable.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby total_douche on Tue Sep 27, 2016 4:19 am

The point is that they are all functionally similar enough (sharing a common lineage with the Xerox idea) that they are all basically the same to the average end-user. You point a mouse and open windows and you can move windows around and open files or send them to the trash. If one likes Windows, great, it has its flaws, but if it works for you, fine. If you prefer Mac, that's great, too, Macs are great PCs, and some of my best times were had on a Mac. If the long-paid-for software I use every day worked in Linux without some kind of emulation (I've never been very adept at setting up virtual machines, honestly, I can't be bothered), I guarantee I wouldn't be using Windows. I also prefer a 498T to a PAF (or anything else that isn't a P90, for that matter). Your mileage may vary.

You have a moral stance against Microsoft, and I won't argue with it, because, honestly, Bill Gates has given the world a lot of good reasons. I'm also not going to argue that Apple was the primary driver behind the modern GUI-based operating system, because, let's face it, Bill Gates and crew weren't the ones figuring out how to change the mouse from an expensive, fragile piece of equipment into a cheap, reliable, robust one. It probably makes you a better person than I, but most people either don't know or don't care. So we're left with the way the interface functions. Honestly, they all basically work the same. You point. You click. You run applications and open files. Then you shut the computer down. Big picture, guy.

Apple makes great products, and always has, but the social construction that is their contemporary brand is every bit as bad as Gibson's, if not an order of magnitude worse.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby bishopdante on Tue Sep 27, 2016 8:16 am

total_douche wrote:The point is that they are all functionally similar enough (sharing a common lineage with the Xerox idea) that they are all basically the same to the average end-user. You point a mouse and open windows and you can move windows around and open files or send them to the trash.


No offense, but I ran windows vista for 2 months, on the house equivalent of a TV.

Was a failed hackintosh experiment that ended up as a TV. ASUS budget firmware not good for hackintosh (10.5 on an ASUS P5K VM DO / intel Q6600. Totally not happening, but then again... apple wored quite hard to make sure that people didn't just use the OS on third party hardware. 2 weeks of deep cryptic nightmares over Christmas, then I quit. Not to say that I was doing it for anything other than research, and I made sure to put an apple sticker on the box, ensuring that it was "apple labelled equipment" to meet the EULA. 3rd party PC hardware is *not* all the same, and if you tinker you discover why apple get reliability from making sure the hardware specs are consistent. Some hackintoshes are 'quite stable', and only miss a few features, such as working sound, the ability to switch off, SATA, or PCI slots. Others are... so broken they cannot be booted no matter how clever the kexts. I would never trust a hackintosh for work, but it's incredibly educational. Mystery 3rd party hardware / controllers are, um, often really quite flaky about meeting the standard protocols. Especially the cheaper stuff. How unreliable windows works out is as dependent on the hardware you choose as the work M$ engineers do, and it is shifting sands. I don't have an easy solution for that.).

This picture you paint of reliable point and clicking was not my experience with vista. Took about 9hrs to install, and cost money for the legit disk and license.

I have never seen such a hilariously dysfunctional botch job of an OS, and I took to fixing it every time it broke, as a project. It was horribly unreliable, and took longer to fix than it did to break. "DLL hell" is a term microsoft earned. The final terminal state was booting to an empty window with a dialog box over the top saying "windows has identified that the application 'windows' is not secure, so you are being returned to windows".

All we did was play Divx and mpeg files on it. Not exactly demanding. Stuck Ubuntu on it in 15 mins, and it just sat there and worked for several years.

Then... let us not speak of my experiences of windows 95. Windows 98/ME. Windows mobile. Windows 2000. Windows .NET server edition. The WinCE that runs on cash machines. Comedy levels of broken. Shocking, perverse, dysfunctional. Tissue paper levels of security... but you must security update. Except the update was actually malware spoofed in by... whoever.

Shall we speak of the love that Web programmers have for ActiveX controls, or IE6.

But whatever you do... don't speak to the poor people who had to keep NT4 propped up on the daily, for a critical job connecting to very expensive imagesetter hardware. If you touch the mouse it may crash, and I will be there for days bringing it back to life. No kidding. Few remember NT4, it was that bad. We feared it back in the day... but it was worse still being run by the UK government in 2006. Getting me fired for "we can't see this cutting edge browser-based system you built on any of our office machines". NT4?! You run NT4? Not surprised they were scared of computers.

OK, XP was actually usable. So long as you had a computer science graduate take two days swearing blue murder and set it all up for you with the kruft stripped out. That would sit and work reliably for months. I got a fair bit done with it. It was not pretty or fun, but at least it worked.

Many comedy level "who signed this off in brief let alone production release" ideas. Madness.

For example... why does word rewrite your typings?! For that matter, why is there an animated paperclip-mascot which tells you what to do, and crashes your work?

What is with the sniffing dog that takes 20 minutes to... search your whole hard drive and not find a file explicitly searched for by name?!

Autoexec.bat / config.sys... anybody could get in there and cause carnage. Sometimes I did it for sport. Only to people who insisted that entire educational faculties should run MS, and that they were far older and more qualified than the likes of we kids to have opinions on how to administrate the systems. Oh they ate their words.

If macdonalds made computers not burgers, they'd be Microsoft.

But hey. A burger has a simple user interface. A grippable bun and a meat disc in the center. A burger is a burger, they all work the same. Any burger will do. Why would you be concerned what's really in it, or prefer to make your own?
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby total_douche on Tue Sep 27, 2016 8:45 am

Yeah, but everyone thought Vista was crap, because it probably ties with Windows 1.0 as the worst Windows OS ever made. The big picture still holds true... you point and click with a mouse. For 99.99% of people who use computers for ordinary tasks, and aren't die-hard loyalists of a particular OS, Windows works just fine. Even for the ones who might use a Mac at work.

Let me put it to you another way. A 787 pilot will still understand what the important things in a 154 cockpit do - they just won't be able to read the labels (unless they're fluent in Russian), nor will they know the specifics of what little switches do what. But they will be reasonably certain that pushing forward on the thrust levers will add power, and pulling back on the control wheel will make the pointy end go up. And, if one had to operate the basic controls, for a basic task, such as flying in a circle, one would adapt to the slightly different look and feel fairly intuitively. This is also true of one who sells a Corolla and buys a Corvette.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby blackmarket on Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:24 am

Anthony Flack wrote:My point is that the influence and borrowing throughout the 80s, 90s and 2000s was almost all flowing from Apple to Microsoft. Apple was the innovator in UI design


No, I don't think this is true. Apple has always lagged behind in quite a few aspects of user interface. The substandard keyboard interface system has always been the weak point for me in this operating system, as has window management. Throughout the the 2000's Apple borrowed heavily from Windows and/or Linux. They still haven't figured out a way to lock columns in El Capitan. Launchpad, fairly new to OSX, serves basically the same purpose as the Start menu from Windows that has been around since forever. There are other examples.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby Anthony Flack on Tue Sep 27, 2016 5:14 pm

Window and desktop management was miles ahead way back in OS9, with the function key commands etc.

total_douche wrote:The point is that they are all functionally similar enough (sharing a common lineage with the Xerox idea) that they are all basically the same to the average end-user. You point a mouse and open windows and you can move windows around and open files or send them to the trash.


I have to do UI design as part of my job. It's probably the most painful part, requiring endless iteration. It is no easy task, even for a relatively simple application, to design an interface that is at once elegant, intuitive, practical and visually pleasing. For something as massively complex as an operating system, there are thousands of opportunities for a designer to make the user experience either pleasant or frustrating.

It's not really apparent now, but back when Microsoft quite blatantly didn't give a crap if their software was a pain in the dick to use, Apple's overt focus on improving the user experience led to great gains in usability.

bishopdante wrote:Apple brought a concept of mass marketing computer technology by concentrating on ease of use rather than pure technological power.


I think this is the crux of it but I'd go further. Apple (under Jobs) aspired to make the experience of getting a computer to do what you wanted be not just not a pain in the dick, but to be actually enjoyable - like driving a luxury car or using a similarly high-end piece of industrial design (most notably the Braun products that Jobs was so fond of). The Macintosh was the first computer that aspired to be beautiful (and it seemed to directly inspire a couple of its competitors to also produce machines that aspired to be beautiful - the Amiga and Archimedes).

I was once thrust into a situation where I was the tech person responsible for keeping a whole school full of computers up and running. I had spent the last five years using Windows machines and the school's computers were all G3 iMacs and eMacs. I went in completely cold. Fortunately for me, setting up things like a LAN and internet connection, printer sharing, cloning drives etc. etc. in OS9 were actually designed around the idea that a person should be able to achieve these tasks easily with no prior knowledge, and even more fortunately for me, it generally worked.
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Re: Why people like Apple stuff.

Postby bishopdante on Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:06 pm

blackmarket wrote:
Anthony Flack wrote:Windows has been borrowing features from Apple long before XP. Original Windows was straight-up dogshit compared to the Macintosh.

Even back in the XP days (an operating system I used for many years), I well remember OS9 offering nice, convenient, previously unheard-of things like fast indexed file searches, two-finger scrolling on touchpads and in-browser previews of everything (even pdfs and psds) which didn't start to appear in Windows until Win7. Win10 still won't preview psds.

The Windows control panel meanwhile has been a horror show right up until Win10.


I am not an expert in early OS designs, but seems like Windows, OSX, and Linux all influence each other at different times. This is how markets operate. OSX has always had substandard keyboard access to their OS. Windows and probably Linux have ben pushing Apple forward incrementally to increase access via keyboard commands. They still lag behind in that area. Some of the window management in El Capitan seems to have been influenced by things available in Windows since 7. Influence and "borrowing" goes both ways.


I would agree with all of the above. I used OS9 very happily until the mid noughties, but compared to a modern OS under the hood it simply couldn't have been scaled up. Particularly the networking and multitasking side had big problems. Many of the secret key commands were unpublished, and I could blaze around that OS faster than the computers could handle. So I just lined up four of them, and worked my way down the queue hammering in commands and moving to the next. And it was *beautifully* simple.

The whole problem is teaching people. An established user base who don't want to have to retrain. Just like the terminal bashers who didn't want the mouse, the die hard apple users wanted more of the same, not a big rethink. I feel that human interface in the mainstream is decades behind where it could be, and that is because of the backwards compatibility of the humans. Why do we have qwerty keyboards? Same reason. Legacy standard. We won't get a new keyboard in the mainstream, nobody who knows qwerty wants dvorak or whatever else. What we got that was an innovation was numberpad predictive text input on Nokia mobile phones, and I suspect that voice recognition and gesture will work for a lot of people.

Never quite felt that OSX got to the same level of usability and maintainability as "classic", but that is basically because UNIX is a totally different paradigm. It is like trying to dress up a cart horse as a show pony. Apple tried to match the legendary OS's productive and helpful WYSIWYG interface and meld it with NeXT's UI. On a yesterday deadline. Scott forstall was that guy. Get it out the door.

______

One of the *big* regrets at Apple is to do with that PSD working magically everywhere, and relates to NeXT. And PDF.

One of the *huge* advances in NeXT was display postscript. An OpenGL postscript RIP built into the OS, rendering postscript for the screen.

Great idea... for the '90s... *but*.

The way adobe handled it was a problem. NeXT engineers working on the postscript bit were only allowed to access the source code in ultra-security Adobe facilities, like checking in and out of a prison. Engineers prevented from seeing all the code. No source code could leave. Only compiled binaries. Adobe severely limited access to the postscript source code, which caused nightmares for the OS engineers trying to do a new and complex implementation.

Adobe had been used to supplying their compiled RIP as their most lucrative product, in the form of embedded systems for printers. The "family jewels". License fees.

Adobe's management were happy to use the same thinking and apply the same techniques to an OS, like a high framerate printer. Your paper documents would look the same, natively rendered using the same code, not just a preview.

The process was horrific. Not being able to access or circulate the source code and work to almost military spec secrecy made display postscript a very painful job. What is more, lots of the postscript runtime was a badly-ported '70s/'80s mess, all written in C. Nor were adobe keen to have NeXT's talent teach them new ways, or adopt objective C. The process of maintaining display postscript was like commercial torture for these hackers and computer scientists.

An OS's realtime display language has very different demands to a printer, and is much more complex. For a machine that sends to a printer, being a native speaker of the proprietary layout language was a big plus.

Quartz or "display postscript" is still to this day patented, locked, closed.

The monopoly on printing renderers and vector graphics by Adobe was perpetuated. That is *exactly* the sort of thing that should be done according to open standards, and developed by academics.

The openGL bit brought over from SGi was much more friendly. Open source. The reason being that SGi were interested in performance, supplying high technology graphics systems for the military and big industrial clients. They were not interested in taxing the product, they wanted no holds barred performance and reliability.

Ironically SGi went bust / got split up, and their HQ is now the Googleplex.

All the proprietary hardware... gone. The brand... gone.

But OpenGL lives on. In the open.

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Years back adobe could have open sourced postscript. We could have had display postscript in the browser.

But that is how it goes.

Today, if I was designing or commissioning a graphics display system for an OS, OpenGL like most Linux uses would be involved.

But the layout engine would be based on HTML and SVG, not postscript. I would not doubt that either jobs or berners lee would agree this is the future.

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PSD is just a flavour of PDF these days. If you want your system talking postscript, you have to get a license off adobe. MS charge license fees, they don't like paying them. The postscript handling of MS office is *hideous*. The postscript handling of the windows OS is not good, in all honesty.

TIFF was and is the accepted open standard for pixel data. Today we have PNG and JPEG, also open standards.

Making standards a commercial monopoly naturally leads to trouble. We have laws against monopolies. Compatibility wars predate the computer industry, and the one issue that monopolies solve is standardisation. However, those standards often work out more like a prison than an open book, or well designed mains plug.

There is still a confusion between science open and peer reviewed, research performed for the public good by experts, and proprietary technology.

Particularly the idea of technology and education as a public good and driver of progress and ethics has not been at the foundation of the USA's high tech industries, which has a history of private guild-like research institutions such as Edison's GE menlo lab. Technology and science are related, and it has always been difficult to approportion credit where credit is due for those who work for all of society. It is easy to be broke doing that.

Computers are not only technology. It is called computer science for a reason.

Bertrand serlet, the ex-academic head of software engineering at both NeXT and apple, the architect of OSX, when he left apple after jobs died, he made a simple public statement: "I do computer science not consumer product development".

That statement speaks volumes to those familiar with the ethics and history of the computer industry, and it shows where cook's leadership is headed. Box shifting. Closed boxes.

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Open standards are good. Making standards proprietary leads to exploitation, bullying etc.

According to the hacker ethic, denying access to understanding how something works, and limiting what people can do with it, that is not ethical. It might be lucrative. Lots of unethical things are lucrative. Such as robbery, war, or slavery.
"One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision." - Bertrand Russell
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