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Apple releases OSX Mountain Lion to developers

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  • User profile image
    Ray7

    Well, they kept that quiet.

    Seems that a massive OSX update is on its way this summer, and Mac developers can get their hands on a preview today.

    And there are some big changes afoot - really big.

    http://techcrunch.com/2012/02/16/os-x-mountain-lion/

    It looks like Apple is putting iCloud right at the core of everything, and continuing to build stuff they've learned from IOS into the desktop OS.  They've included Airplay so you can bounce the desktop to your TV. Nice touch; bet that'll flog a couple more AppleTVs

    http://www.engadget.com/2012/02/16/apple-os-x-mountain-lion-10-8-in-depth-preview/

     

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    And a very odd piece from John Gruber carries an interesting insight into the future of OSX: yearly release schedules.

    And there will be no merging of iOS and OSX into a single operating system. While it's fine to share concepts between them, Apple sees the desktop and the mobile as two distinct environments with two distinct ways of working.

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    A notable inclusion is that, by default, you can only run apps from the Apple Store or that are signed by 'Identified Developers', which suggests a longer term strategy of turning the Mac into as closed a platform as iOS.

  • User profile image
    spivonious

    , AndyC wrote

    A notable inclusion is that, by default, you can only run apps from the Apple Store or that are signed by 'Identified Developers', which suggests a longer term strategy of turning the Mac into as closed a platform as iOS.

    That's very interesting. It would definitely cut down on the malware.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    , spivonious wrote

    *snip*

    That's very interesting. It would definitely cut down on the malware.

    I think that's the idea. It'll be interesting to see how the developers react to it.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    Actually, thinking about it, this is the best of both worlds.

    Most developers are fine with the Mac store because it makes them money, but the rules are so tight it will mean a lot of developers won't be able to get their stuff in there. The 'identified developer' thing should help those who write utility applications that break the app store rules. So the rules are pretty simple: app store or identified developer. Steer clear of anything else.

  • User profile image
    ZippyV

    How much is an identified developer thingy going to cost and will Apple allow anyone to become one?

  • User profile image
    evildictait​or

    , Ray7 wrote

    And there will be no merging of iOS and OSX into a single operating system. While it's fine to share concepts between them, Apple sees the desktop and the mobile as two distinct environments with two distinct ways of working.

    Interesting that Microsoft have bet big money on exactly the opposite with WOA. TBH I think Apple are probably right, but it's an interesting (if costly) experiment for MS.

  • User profile image
    evildictait​or

    , Ray7 wrote

    Actually, thinking about it, this is the best of both worlds.

    Most developers are fine with the Mac store because it makes them money, but the rules are so tight it will mean a lot of developers won't be able to get their stuff in there. The 'identified developer' thing should help those who write utility applications that break the app store rules. So the rules are pretty simple: app store or identified developer. Steer clear of anything else.

    One problem here is running software that people disapprove of. Will the TOR client be in there - sure its used by hardened criminals, but it's also used by democracy activists in Iran and China. How about BitTorrent clients - they can be used legitimately even if they are almost exclusively used for pirating movies. What about security pen-testing tools (for whitehats) which might double-up as hacking tools (for blackhats)?

    And speaking of China, would Apple be tempted to use their ban-hammer against the inevitable "free-tibet" apps in order to gain favour and market share in countries like China?

    And does developing for MacOSX now mean handing over the keys to your business to Apple so that they could effectively bankrupt you with a wave of their magic ban-hammer?

    I'm all for locking down machines in corporate environments, but I don't like this trend towards locking down computing in general. The whole reason why I got into programming in the first place is that the sky is the limit and you can do what you want. If the platforms are all being locked down then computing in future will be a much more boring and stifled place.

  • User profile image
    Royal​Schrubber

    , spivonious wrote

    *snip*

    That's very interesting. It would definitely cut down on the malware.

    Not necessarily. 

  • User profile image
    Ray7

     

    Indeed. Apple foolishly believed that developers would not do this simply because the rules say you shouldn't. They're releasing a fix which will ask the user's permission before allowing access to their data. Not quite sure what this means for existing apps, but the assumption is that the code will work, but all they will get back is an empty address book.

    But considering Android and WP7 already ask the user's permission, Apple was dumb to let this happen.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    , ZippyV wrote

    How much is an identified developer thingy going to cost and will Apple allow anyone to become one?

    It's free, but I'm not sure if Apple will allow just anyone to have one. I understand that Mountain Lion will check a blacklist each day and if any certificate appears on the list then the application won't run.

    Turns out that this functionality is already built into Lion, waiting for the Apple Gods to switch it on I suppose.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    , evildictaitor wrote

    *snip*

    Interesting that Microsoft have bet big money on exactly the opposite with WOA. TBH I think Apple are probably right, but it's an interesting (if costly) experiment for MS.

    And in these odd private meetings that they've been holding (a whole keynote for one bloke?) Apple is keen to emphasise the difference. I agree with you that Apple is probably right, but they could still mess up the execution. If they push the developers too hard and too fast then they can still go elsewhere.

    This could be Apple's riskiest move yet

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    , evildictaitor wrote

    *snip*

    One problem here is running software that people disapprove of. Will the TOR client be in there - sure its used by hardened criminals, but it's also used by democracy activists in Iran and China. How about BitTorrent clients - they can be used legitimately even if they are almost exclusively used for pirating movies. What about security pen-testing tools (for whitehats) which might double-up as hacking tools (for blackhats)?

    That's a good point, but I would say that if you're the kind of person who runs BitTorrent clients then you're also the kind of person who will probably just switch of the Gatekeeper.

    Generic Forum Image

     

    And speaking of China, would Apple be tempted to use their ban-hammer against the inevitable "free-tibet" apps in order to gain favour and market share in countries like China?

    Not sure how they could. If you want to run it then just pick 'anywhere'.

    And does developing for MacOSX now mean handing over the keys to your business to Apple so that they could effectively bankrupt you with a wave of their magic ban-hammer?

    You don't have to sell your stuff on the app store.

    I'm all for locking down machines in corporate environments, but I don't like this trend towards locking down computing in general. The whole reason why I got into programming in the first place is that the sky is the limit and you can do what you want. If the platforms are all being locked down then computing in future will be a much more boring and stifled place.

    But from the consumer's viewpoint it will also be safer.

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    , Ray7 wrote

    *snip*

    And in these odd private meetings that they've been holding (a whole keynote for one bloke?) Apple is keen to emphasise the difference. I agree with you that Apple is probably right, but they could still mess up the execution.

    But Apple's modus operandi has always been to denounce any feature or suggestion that isn't in the current product as unnecessary, even if they then completely reverse that decision for the next release. So desktop != tablet is the obvious message they'll be sending out right until they're ready to release a single unified experience.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    , AndyC wrote

    *snip*

    But Apple's modus operandi has always been to denounce any feature or suggestion that isn't in the current product as unnecessary, even if they then completely reverse that decision for the next release. So desktop != tablet is the obvious message they'll be sending out right until they're ready to release a single unified experience.

    Oh they're definitely unifying the experience across all their device, but I don't think that means that they want the exact same OS running everywhere.

    You are right though. Apple spent years saying that a mouse with two buttons was a bad idea, and then they turned around and released a mouse with .... no buttons at all. That was a bad example but I know what you mean.

  • User profile image
    Ray7

    Here's a quote from an unexpected source:

    The answer to your first question about OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion—which Apple announced today and plans to ship sometime this summer—is, "Yes, you will want it." If, like most people, you use a computer for pleasure as well as for work, you will want it a lot. And if you carry an iPad or iPhone with you when you leave your computer at home, you will want Mountain Lion even more. Of course, that's all based on the early code I've been looking at, and Apple's clearly got a lot of fine-tuning to do—and possibly a few features to add. But there's no doubt that Mountain Lion already looks very fine. OS X 10.8 does more to integrate social networking and file-synching into a personal computer than any other OS I've seen. It even has the potential to upend the video game market, because for anyone with an HDTV and Apple's $99 Apple TV set-top box, Mountain Lion transforms the Mac into a powerful game console.  For the consumer market, Mountain Lion may be the most significant OS release since Windows 95.

    from PC Magazine.

     It's interesting that Apple blessed them with a preview.

  • User profile image
    giovanni

    , evildictaitor wrote

    *snip*

    Interesting that Microsoft have bet big money on exactly the opposite with WOA. TBH I think Apple are probably right, but it's an interesting (if costly) experiment for MS.

    I am no expert in kernels, but doesn't iOS and OS X share most of the kernel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mach_kernel) like Microsoft would like to share MinWin on phones and desktops? Please correct me if I am wrong.

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