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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Mac OS X > Mac OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" to arrive Jan '09

Mac OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard" to arrive Jan '09
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Jun 4, 2008, 03:58 PM
 
The Unofficial Apple Weblog: Mac OS X 10.6 to debut at WWDC 09
Ars: Mac OS X 10.6 code named Snow Leopard, may be pure Cocoa

Intel-only, 64 bit (so CD Macs will not be supported)
• focus is not on new features; instead performance and stability improvements
• push towards Cocoa - no more Carbon UI
• release MWSF Jan 2009
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 04:05 PM
 
Seems too early.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 04:13 PM
 
I don't believe a word of it.

It seems unlikely that Apple would release a new OS X *without* some layman-user-impressing whiz-bang features. Things like "Intel-only, 64-bit, 100% Cocoa" are developer-talk, and do not impress my school friends, my girlfriend, or most Mac users out there -- especially since many are already half-aware that their Mac has "Intel" and "64-bit" after seeing the box.

All the bloggers out there with undeserved senses of entitlement would scream bloody murder if a new OS X came out that DIDN'T update something major visually/functionally.

Besides, I don't think Apple would extinguish the PPC support torch so soon, not to mention leave CD users out in the cold like that.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 04:16 PM
 
I'm ambivalent on the "Snow Leopard" rumor in general, but the 64-bit-only and no-Carbon angles sound like pretty obvious random guesses.
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Jun 4, 2008, 04:18 PM
 
Well, if it does happen, here's hoping us CD people aren't screwed.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 04:55 PM
 
More multitouch for Macs that support it.
Aron Petrov, designer, coder. My stuff : Macbook Pro 13", Apple Cinema Display, iPhone 6
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 05:55 PM
 
I call bullsh*t. Leopard's doing fine, and there's no real reason to bring the hammer down on PPC and Intel CD users already. I'm sure that it'll happen, but I'd keep my eyes open around next MacWorld for an initial announcement, not a final release.

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Jun 4, 2008, 05:58 PM
 
No CD Mac support?

Magyk 8-ball says "unlikely"
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Jun 4, 2008, 06:38 PM
 
Originally Posted by milhouse View Post
No CD Mac support?

Magyk 8-ball says "unlikely"
Exactly, no way in hell.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 07:12 PM
 
I can't imagine Apple burning the Early Intel Core Duo adopters ... (yet)


I don't think its unlikely they'll go Intel only fairly soon, but I'd be amazed if they went 64bit only ... just can't see it without burning a serious amount of early adopters.

Me? I'd pay $129 for bug fixes and Intel only support ( = faster!).
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Jun 4, 2008, 07:34 PM
 
My prediction: Apple won't have 2 operating systems with 'Leopard' in the name. Plenty of other cat names to choose from.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 07:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dakar the Fourth View Post
Seems too early.
Agreed
Originally Posted by TheoCryst View Post
I call bullsh*t. Leopard's doing fine, and there's no real reason to bring the hammer down on PPC and Intel CD users already. I'm sure that it'll happen, but I'd keep my eyes open around next MacWorld for an initial announcement, not a final release.
And Agreed!
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 07:46 PM
 
What a load of crock.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by Gankdawg View Post
Plenty of other cat names to choose from.
Something with "Pussy" comes to mind

-t
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:15 PM
 
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:20 PM
 
I can say with 100% certainty that this is all a load of horseshit and that we'll be laughing about this rumor in a week from now.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:45 PM
 
Yeah and Windows is bringing out an OS that actually works! HAHAHAHA!
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:52 PM
 
It might be called "Snow Leopard". It might be Intel-only, but something tells me it won't be 10.6. It sounds more like an experiment.

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Jun 4, 2008, 08:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by NZFL View Post
Yeah and Windows is bringing out an OS that actually works! HAHAHAHA!
Ummm, duh....Windows 7 is hardcore.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 08:53 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
Eventually Apple will leverage Clang and LLVM so there's no real need to maintain Universal Binary. Xcode 3.1 will be implementing some LLVM support for 3rd party developers most likely aimed at iPhone support.



Originally Posted by Horsepoo!
I can say with 100% certainty that this is all a load of horseshit and that we'll be laughing about this rumor in a week from now.
John Sircusa basically called this last year in his review

With Leopard, Mac OS X's API future is clearer than it's ever been. The future is Objective-C, Cocoa, 64-bit. Full stop, no waffling, everyone get on board the train.

If Apple shatcans PPC yet doesn't really deliver many compelling features for 10.6 other that small tweaks and polishing most PPC users will suck it up and stick to Leopard IMO.
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
Eventually Apple will leverage Clang and LLVM so there's no real need to maintain Universal Binary. Xcode 3.1 will be implementing some LLVM support for 3rd party developers most likely aimed at iPhone support.





John Sircusa basically called this last year in his review

With Leopard, Mac OS X's API future is clearer than it's ever been. The future is Objective-C, Cocoa, 64-bit. Full stop, no waffling, everyone get on board the train.

If Apple shatcans PPC yet doesn't really deliver many compelling features for 10.6 other that small tweaks and polishing most PPC users will suck it up and stick to Leopard IMO.

I'm thinking almost everyone will stick to Leopard.

64-bit-only means all apps but two will suddenly stop working. (This one is 100% false)
Cocoa-only means many 'important' apps and almost every game ever ported/developed for Mac OS X will suddenly stop working. (This one is 100% false)
Intel-only could happen but is highly unlikely unless 10.6 is released not this coming January but the next one in a year and a half from now.

As much as I like to read John's articles, his predictions are absolutely terrible.

If this is to slim down Mac OS X and remove the cruft that may be a performance bottleneck to iPhones, it's still complete and utter horseshit considering iPhone OS X is a completely different Mac OS X branch. The development of these two OSs are completely seperate...technology migrates between them when it makes sense but trimming Mac OS X's fat won't make iPhone OS X become Snappy since iPhone's OS X is already a trimmed down version of Mac OS X.

Besides, pulling such a stunt would only make people stop buying Mac products in fear of being EOL'ed within the year.
( Last edited by Horsepoo!!!; Jun 4, 2008 at 09:10 PM. )
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:05 PM
 
Sorry, but some tangible features would be nice. Security and stability? Removing 32bit, PPC, and deprecating Carbon? Apple wouldn't ship something based on abstract intangibles and fewer capabilities. Features sell software.

The only thing believable about this story is "snow leopard."

I could imagine Apple previewing 10.6 at WWDC but there would need to be a lot more than this.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
John Sircusa basically called this last year in his review

With Leopard, Mac OS X's API future is clearer than it's ever been. The future is Objective-C, Cocoa, 64-bit. Full stop, no waffling, everyone get on board the train.
Yes, that's what he said, but it doesn't mean Apple is gonna rip out 32bit or Carbon. It just means future OS development will be more focused.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
Yes, that's what he said, but it doesn't mean Apple is gonna rip out 32bit or Carbon. It just means future OS development will be more focused.
I don't think they can but clearly Leopard ushered in a new era where if you're staying with Carbon you're not even close to the bleeding edge. 10.6 "has" to support carbon but at such a basic level it's clear that any top modern app is going to want to get off of Carbon quickly. canceling PPC support could enrage a lot of people but its up to us to let the PPC owners know they're not jumping on the grenade in vain. We will ALL benefit from their magnanimous sacrifice
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:37 PM
 
I can see Apple dropping the G4 for 10.6, but not the G5. My PowerBook runs Leopard just great, and even QuartzGL works now.

The only reason Apple would dump PPC is if the UI leverages Intel-specific technology. Otherwise, they're throwing money away.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 09:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
I can see Apple dropping the G4 for 10.6, but not the G5. My PowerBook runs Leopard just great, and even QuartzGL works now.

The only reason Apple would dump PPC is if the UI leverages Intel-specific technology. Otherwise, they're throwing money away.
Ok based on the sparse information that we have. What if this scenario played out.

Apple announces a 10.6 Developer Preview at WWDC next week. They announce OS X 10.6 Now Leopard.

Jobs states that OS X is now going to bridge to new platforms. The iPhone is a platform as well as the Apple TV and these are seperate from the single Macintosh platform that preceded.

Thus the company had to take a look at how best to support the new platforms and the decision was made to accelerate the move to Cocoa frameworks and cancel development of PPC support. This would allow Apple to push OS X forward and cover multiple platforms by saving engineering resources.


There's your motive right there. Is it going to make PPC users or Carbon loving developers happy? Not all but what it will do is usher in a new era where developers will be coding and delivering on multiple platforms and that means more money in the long run for successful products and a more unified development platform.

I've seen Jobs sell far less using RDF.
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:01 PM
 
You can't just take a Cocoa app and make it work by magic on the iPhone any more than you can a Carbon app. Ditto for an app compiled for x86 or 64-bit. That rationale wouldn't really make sense.
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:27 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
You can't just take a Cocoa app and make it work by magic on the iPhone any more than you can a Carbon app. Ditto for an app compiled for x86 or 64-bit. That rationale wouldn't really make sense.
No it still requires work naturally but Cocoa without a doubt is Apple's "blessed" framework and they will probably be working hard to extend the benefits across multiple platforms using OS X.

The Darkhorse that potentially glues this strategy together is LLVM and Clang

Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard: the Ars Technica review: Page 11

The best way to think of LLVM is right there in the name: it's a virtual machine, but one that models something quite low-level, more like a CPU than a traditional virtual machine that models an entire PC.

Why model something so primitive? Who wants to write code that targets a virtual CPU? Well, compilers, for one. The idea is that you produce code in LLVM's platform-neutral intermediary representation (IR) and then LLVM will optimize it and then convert it to native code for the real CPU of your choice. This conversion can be done ahead of time, producing a traditional executable, or you can ship the platform-neutral byte code as-is and let LLVM compile it just in time (JIT).
Naturally Apple has created their own JIT tools but:

Still, Apple was content with its custom JIT when it only had to target 32-bit PowerPC CPUs. But as 64-bit PowerPC and later 32-bit and 64-bit Intel CPUs joined the platform, updating that JIT for all the new architectures (and features like SSE, SSE2, SSE3... ) started to get a bit hairy.

Don't be misled by its humble use in Leopard; Apple has grand plans for LLVM. How grand? How about swapping out the guts of the gcc compiler Mac OS X uses now and replacing them with the LLVM equivalents? That project is well underway. Not ambitious enough? How about ditching gcc entirely, replacing it with a completely new LLVM-based (but gcc-compatible) compiler system? That project is called Clang, and it's already yielded some impressive performance results. In particular, its ability to do fast incremental compilation and provide a much richer collection of metadata is a huge boon to GUI IDEs like Xcode.
Apple's systematically weaning consumers/developers off of tools that won't help them in the future. They're going to put their energy behind Cocoa, 64-bit and Intel platform and leverage LLVM and Clang to tie things together.

Those that doubt. What did Apple ship Java 6 in? 64-bit Intel only.
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:29 PM
 
The name isn't believable, but Intel only is, unfortunately.

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Jun 4, 2008, 10:36 PM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
I've seen Jobs sell far less using RDF.
So you're aware that this reasoning is BS then?
accelerate the move to Cocoa frameworks
Apple isn't going to unnecessarily make work for itself. It's not going to Cocoaize the Finder or iTunes or Logic Pro or whatever. What it is going to do is stop developing Carbon. That means all new things will be Cocoa. But this is already happening. Leopard's CoverFlow is Cocoa, but it's employed by the Finder, which is still Carbon. How? Carbon apps can call Cocoa frameworks, and have been able to for a long time. Current Carbon apps, Apple or third party, are not going to stop working, and Apple isn't going to rewrite its entire library of Carbon apps.
cancel development of PPC support.
Huh? If Apple can build OS X on Intel C2Ds and the iPhone's ARM processor and the tv's crappy little Pentium, it can also build on PPC. PowerMac G5s were mostly bought by high-end professionals. Apple isn't going to screw them arbitrarily.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
Those that doubt. What did Apple ship Java 6 in? 64-bit Intel only.
What's still 32 bit? The Leopard kernel. Moving to 64 bit means driver nightmares, worse than Vista. Apple's not stupid.

All 64 bit? All Intel? All Cocoa? None of these things will happen.
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
So you're aware that this reasoning is BS then?

Apple isn't going to unnecessarily make work for itself. It's not going to Cocoaize the Finder or iTunes or Logic Pro or whatever. What it is going to do is stop developing Carbon. That means all new things will be Cocoa. But this is already happening. Leopard's CoverFlow is Cocoa, but it's employed by the Finder, which is still Carbon. How? Carbon apps can call Cocoa frameworks, and have been able to for a long time. Current Carbon apps, Apple or third party, are not going to stop working, and Apple isn't going to rewrite its entire library of Carbon apps.

Huh? If Apple can build OS X on Intel C2Ds and the iPhone's ARM processor and the tv's crappy little Pentium, it can also build on PPC. PowerMac G5s were mostly bought by high-end professionals. Apple isn't going to screw them arbitrarily.
Apple will have ot Cocoaize any of their apps they need to move to 64-bit. They're in the same boat as everyone else. Note the lack of a Final Cut Studio update this year. If a developer needs 64-bit ...uh oh better call Cocoa. I realize Apple will not and should not attempt to eradicate all vestiges of Carbon from OS X but likely they'll take the big pieces to Cocoa and have Cocoa wrappers for the smaller stuff.

I think Apple could very well screw the PPC G5 owners. If they come out with a 10.6 optimized mainly for Intel based 64-bit hardware so what? CS4 is still going to run on PPC in Leopard for all we know and most legacy will be fine. The key message is that this release is only a "stability and security" release. For PPC owners it'll be no big deal but for Intel 64-bit owners it'll be the ticket especially if it's free or as close to free as possible.
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Jun 4, 2008, 10:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by mduell View Post
Intel only? Maybe, but why? I thought Apple was planning on keeping platform flexibility (PPC, x86, ARM) so they can choose the best CPU for each application.
64-bit only? No way.
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
What's still 32 bit? The Leopard kernel. Moving to 64 bit means driver nightmares, worse than Vista. Apple's not stupid.

All 64 bit? All Intel? All Cocoa? None of these things will happen.
We'll know in a week.
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Jun 4, 2008, 11:05 PM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
Apple will have ot Cocoaize any of their apps they need to move to 64-bit.
Exactly. Unless the app needs to access more than 4GBs of memory, it doesn't need conversion to Cocoa. Does the Finder, iTunes, or even Logic Pro need this? No. (Audio processing is far more dependent on processors and hard drives, not memory.)
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 11:11 PM
 
The only rationale I can come up with for Intel only / 64-bit only (this is a side effect, not a motivation) is if they're going to do something really cool with virtualization (Intel VT).
     
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Jun 4, 2008, 11:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by lpkmckenna View Post
Exactly. Unless the app needs to access more than 4GBs of memory, it doesn't need conversion to Cocoa. Does the Finder, iTunes, or even Logic Pro need this? No. (Audio processing is far more dependent on processors and hard drives, not memory.)
Logic Studio does indeed IMO (running multiple plugins) but the Finder, iTunes and other small apps do not.

My order of importance

1. Intel ( I simply believe legacy support holds any OS back)
2. Cocoa
3. 64-bit-
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Jun 5, 2008, 12:09 AM
 
Originally Posted by hmurchison2001 View Post
1. Intel ( I simply believe legacy support holds any OS back)
Twenty months old is not "legacy." Just because you personally use Intel doesn't mean it's reasonable to screw folks with PowerPC Macs that are still under AppleCare.
( Last edited by Chuckit; Jun 5, 2008 at 12:26 AM. )
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Jun 5, 2008, 12:53 AM
 
Originally Posted by Chuckit View Post
Twenty months old is not "legacy." Just because you personally use Intel doesn't mean it's reasonable to screw folks with PowerPC Macs that are still under AppleCare.
AppleCare is not Software Assurance. As much as I can emphathize with PPC owners Leopard is a fine OS and the rumors suggest that 10.6 would not be feature laden so what are they really out here?

Their UB apps are going to run fine under Leopard and frankly most of the updates I can see coming in 10.6 would likely benefit Intel platform anyways more than PPC.
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Jun 5, 2008, 01:03 AM
 
Nobody is getting screwed. If SL doesn't offer new features compared to Leopard, PPC users aren't missing out on anything. But C2D users could benefit from code optimization.

Those that say is comes too early should be reminded that it's pretty close to the originally announced OS X upgrade cycle. Demo at MWSF 09 and release in Spring. There's your 18 months. And considering what a hard time MS is having switching everybody over to Vista (and in the process losing people to Linux or OS X) it would also be the perfect time to do a upgrade of the underlying tech (64 bit kernel comes to mind).

If you think of SL as a purely performance/stability related upgrade for C2D users (as well as groundwork for stuff like the iPhone, AppleTV, etc.) it sounds hardly as awful as some people are already making it be. Note that although this is nothing but an unconfirmed rumor there are already nasty arguments about who screwed over who. Seriously, some people need to chill.
     
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Jun 5, 2008, 01:17 AM
 
That's not much of an argument. If 10.6 is as crap as you're making it out to be, then it shouldn't be released at all. If it is worth releasing, then it ought to be worth supporting computers that are less than two years old. Good grief, if you're not going to offer support for at least that long, there's hardly any point to offering the OS for sale in the first place.
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Jun 5, 2008, 02:26 AM
 
Releasing 10.6 and supporting 10.5 have nothing to do with each other. Apple still offers updates for Tiger. Heck, Apple still supports G4s. Why should it be any different with SL?

And who says not having new eye candy and fancy gadgets to throw into user's faces means an update is crap? I know I'm repeating myself, but this is still nothing but a rumor and some people really need to calm down.
     
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Jun 5, 2008, 02:30 AM
 
I can't wait for OS 11.5 Flying Turtle.

It's gonna be all 777bit. Yeay.

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Jun 5, 2008, 03:25 AM
 
Originally Posted by Simon View Post
And who says not having new eye candy and fancy gadgets to throw into user's faces means an update is crap?
I wasn't talking to you. I was responding to the post above yours, but the new forum software seems to have been eating my "quote message in reply" checkboxes. His argument seemed to be that 10.5 is good enough and 10.6 won't add anything worthwhile, so it makes no difference if you can't run it. That seems like a bizarre train of logic to me. Why release something that isn't worth having?
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Jun 5, 2008, 04:05 AM
 
Seems to me that someone is propagating a semi-credible rumour with negative overtones in order to try and short Apple's stock ahead of WWDC. The rumour is barely believable but not total fantasy either. Reaction to it is going to be mostly negative ("oh, look, Apple is screwing over a large number of its customers, again"). Stock price will fall.
     
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Jun 5, 2008, 04:07 AM
 
PowerPC users. - Reduser.net

Hi Everyone.

I am going to be dropping PowerPC support from Glue Tools in the fall. I am starting to find that supporting this platform is becoming more and more problematic as development continues. The biggest problem I have, is that I have to write and debug 2 completely different sets of code to do the same thing. I would rather spend more time building features such as Conform and EDL related tools, rather than PPC Altivec bug fixing and porting.

How many people here actively work on PowerPC systems, and still don't use Intel machines? I am just curious.

bob.
PPC is toast. If you have a large team of developers it makes sense to deal with the extra layer of QA testing but if you are smaller it's just getting too expensive to support two branches of OS X IMO.
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Jun 5, 2008, 05:35 AM
 
I seriously doubt Apple would release Snow Leopard (they ran out of cats, I guess) 64 bit-only, it leaves CD people (like, ahem, me) behind … my machine is just two years old!

So far, I don't mind if Apple makes `only' under-the-hood changes in Snow Leopard, Leopard feels very advanced (feature-wise). If Apple uses 10.6 to mature technologies, programmers can focus on fixing things and bring some technology to fruition (resolution-independence and ZFS, for instance). Also, I think it's a good point in time that Apple beefs up security: OS X is becoming more and more popular, at one point it will be targeted by malware and Apple better be prepared for that.
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Jun 5, 2008, 09:44 AM
 
I've learned never to say never with Apple, but I hope the rumors of dropping PPC are false.
The era of anthropomorphizing hardware is over.
     
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Jun 5, 2008, 10:24 AM
 
Wow, I am so happy that I switched to Windows now!

"That's Mama Luigi to you, Mario!" *wheeze*
     
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Jun 5, 2008, 11:51 AM
 
Originally Posted by Luca Rescigno View Post
Wow, I am so happy that I switched to Windows now!
Heheheheh I actually laughed out loud for real on this one. It's almost as if that should be a sig line because it's so paradoxical in nature. Happy and Windows in the same sentence without the word "clean" (I'm happy that the windex made my windows clean)

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Jun 5, 2008, 12:26 PM
 
TBH, I'd piss my pants in joy if Apple rewrote the Finder, DVD Player, iTunes, Final Cut...*

...but the hard truth is that I've never pissed my pants at any Apple announcements...simply because they never have been radical. If Apple did announce that everything would be 64-bit, x86 and Cocoa, I'd be floored (and swimming in my own piss apparently).

I've know Apple enough now to say with 100% certainty that it's not gonna happen. If someone is going to try to make me believe that Apple is going to rewrite the Finder, DVD Player, iTunes, Final Cut in 6 months, I'll slap some sense into him.

Thinking that Apple has been working parallel Cocoa projects slowly Cocoaizing the Finder, DVD Player, iTunes, Final Cut is absolute madness. I used to have some hope that there were super-secret-Cocoa-port projects but I know better now. There's absolutely no one working on this.

6 months to rewrite these apps is simply not enough. They'll either be severely broken on 10.6 release or severely incomplete.

* to be clear, I'm not saying Cocoa is better than Carbon. I am saying though that it will force Apple to rethink these apps, allow Apple to use the Cocoa-only technology, bring some consistancy to the user-interface, and make these damn apps resolution-independent without having to jump through hoops. Oh, what the hell...I AM saying that Cocoa is better than Carbon. Better for Apple (less attention to stupid details that are free in Cocoa) and better for us (consistancy and rewrite that has forced Apple to remove the legacy garbage that is holding the apps back and moving them forward.) **** carbon. Let it be hidden and a low-level layer. I'm not sorry if I've offended anyone.
( Last edited by Horsepoo!!!; Jun 5, 2008 at 12:34 PM. )
     
 
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