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Apple Mac OS X Tiger 10.4.6

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      09.01.2007 11:23
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      It's good but better is yet to come.

      I loved the Classic Mac OS. Sure when a program crashed you had to reboot your machine and those pesky extension conflicts got a bit tired after a while but I found it to be a snappy little OS and found nothing in the early versions of OS X that made me want to move over.

      However now Mac is on Intel, the speed issue with OS X is resolved and I find myself with an OS that does whatever I want and still keep finding new features in each week that make me go wow.

      You'll find plenty of other sites there offering a blow by blow account of what makes Tiger so great but for me the following are the killers....After a long period of denial clinging to Mac's classic but kaput OS 9, I've finally moved into the future. Does Apple's newest OS live up to the hype? Is it lickable? Is it fast? Does it get in the way?

      The random bits...

      Half the fun of OS X is unlearning my old habits and embracing the power of a beautiful and functional GUI built on the stability and power of Unix. After a week or so with this OS I was converted.

      I don't really find expose (lets you see all open windows at a keystroke) all that useful (but man does it look good), prefering to use the old school command/tab combo. But it makes clearing the desktop real easy.

      Big pluses for me are being able to run Apache (included web server) locally with all the command line goodness a Unix system offers.

      People have criticised Spotlight (OS X Search tool) but I find it works really well and is actually useful. It's certainly a lot better than local search on Windows XP which is pretty much useless.

      iLife: iPhoto, iTunes (I like it and have 15 gigs in my music library with no issues), iMove and especially Garageband (how many hours of my life have I lost to this amazing bit of software?)

      Safari: It makes the web look beautiful (if you're a typography nut like me). I missed my old IE 5.5 for Mac (now that was a great browser) but Safari is better than that or Firefox (which is kinda fugly on OS X).

      The terminal: Nothing is cooler than running your Mac from the command line (well maybe just speaking commands but that interface just isn't quite there yet). The included networking tools are all great and actually useful. The terminal, included Apache webserver and php/Ruby installs all make this a great machine for developers too.

      Speed and stability: The Intel chips are soooo much better than the G4/5 processors and the OS is solid. Any freezes tend to be related to the iffy software I tend to download and take for a spin. No issues with any of the Apple updates yet either. OS X is getting measurably faster with each release of OS X which can only be a good thing.

      Utilities: It's great not to have to get separate software to do basic stuff like defragging your disk, running an automatic backup etc. I can even partition my disc now (old news for Windows users) using the included software.

      The GUI: I don't mind the brushed metal look (but it’s getting kinda old guys). It's better than the pinstripe look of a few versions ago (or god forgive them – the chunky plastic blue look Microsoft has served up with XP). The menus and interfaces are pretty consistent across the various apps (but there is always room for improvement from Apple who pretty much wrote the book on human/computer interface guidelines back in the day).
      It hasn't got the super slick glassy look that Apple's website or Microsoft's Vista OS has (which looks pretty sweet and seems to have lifted more than a few ideas from OS X…anything which makes Windows better has got to be a good thing) but I think that look is already tired. Fonts look fantastic too...it really is the attention to little details that make this OS something special.

      If all you want is something to bang out emails and surf the web then install one of the various versions of Linux.

      If you want a richer computing experience or spend a lot of time doing audio/graphic design work then OS X is for you.

      I strongly recommend you also download and install Quicksilver (Google it) if you want even more control over OS X.

      The newest version of OS X is expected in the first quarter of 07.


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