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10.6.8 Mountain Lion announced


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#1 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 08:07 AM

Link

Looks like my IPad. :P
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#2 ltcommander.data

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:23 AM

What's noteworthy in terms of gaming is Game Center support. No doubt most convenient for iOS games ported to Mac, I wonder how useful will this be for AAA games coming from PC? Could this replace GameRanger as the go to multiplayer solution for games that couldn't maintain the original PC multiplayer mechanism?

In terms of really pushing cross-platform multiplayer, it would be great if Apple released Game Center as a SDK for PC too just like Quicktime is for integration into PC games. With hundreds of millions of Apple ID and people's familiarity with using them across PC, OS X, and iOS I think gamers would be very open to using it. It would finally bring a ubiquitous player profile and cross-platform gaming and wouldn't be tied to a single developer like say EA Origins.

Given Apple's strong support Lion will no doubt bring OpenCL 1.2 support. Hopefully OpenGL 4.x support will be included as well. I wonder if they will continue to introduce new features as non-backwards compatible profiles, ie. OpenGL 2.1 (Legacy), OpenGL 3.2 (Core), and OpenGl 4.x (Core, or whether they just add everything to the existing Core profile?

#3 Janichsan

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 09:35 AM

A mountain lion is a step up to a lion? :huh:

Anyway, that was unexpected. None of the features sound like real killer features, though, but I'm hoping for a general fix of Lion's annoyances – especially the in my opinion fundamentally broken Mission Control (though I doubt these fixes will come...). Nevertheless, the new stuff sounds at least a bit more useful than the unnecessary crap Lion brought over from iOS to the Mac (except maybe for the Twitter baloney). The Game Center was really something I was hoping for. I have grown fond of achievements in games. ;)

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#4 Smoke_Tetsu

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 10:31 AM

Yeah if gamecenter sounds promising if it has the features especially for those companies unable to use the one system currently on Mac that has achievements. :P I think it's a bit silly though to assert being able to stream games from your mac to a TV turns it into a console though like PC Mag said (looks like they may be conflating Airplay with Gamecenter). That being said I didn't expect Apple to put anything gaming related and I do hope they include OpenGL 4.x although game devs would also need to actually use it.

Also it's feeling like a Snow Leopard type release so far I mean even just from the name alone.
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#5 Mister Mumbles

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 11:51 AM

I dunno. This is what I've been afraid of. I mean sure it's great for people who want more 'ease of use' out of their computers, but this whole iOS-ification of OS X just doesn't sit with me well. Frankly, at this point I wouldn't even be surprised if both of them would sort of merge completely sometime down the line. Also, yearly OS updates will mean even more apps will break on a regular basis.

I guess it was a good time as any for me to jump ship.
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#6 Janichsan

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 12:56 PM

View PostMister Mumbles, on 16 February 2012 - 11:51 AM, said:

I dunno. This is what I've been afraid of. I mean sure it's great for people who want more 'ease of use' out of their computers, but this whole iOS-ification of OS X just doesn't sit with me well. Frankly, at this point I wouldn't even be surprised if both of them would sort of merge completely sometime down the line. Also, yearly OS updates will mean even more apps will break on a regular basis.

I guess it was a good time as any for me to jump ship.
Why? Despite the sensationalist headlines, it's not as if they have dumbed down OS X any further (at least based on the info available right now). They added features that debuted on iOS, but didn't take anything away or (over-)simplified anything.

The only thing so far that might be regarded in a somewhat sceptical way is Gatekeeper (because it can limit the software you can install on your computer) but that's purely optional and appears to be closer to the certification mechanism that is already in place in Windows for several years than to the completely walled-off iOS garden.

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#7 DaveyJJ

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 01:00 PM

View PostJanichsan, on 16 February 2012 - 09:35 AM, said:

A mountain lion is a step up to a lion? :huh:

Not in terms of size but certainly was a name that I had guessed ahead of time as a possible monkier. Leopard -> Snow Leopard and now Lion -> Mountain Lion.

But they are running out of big cats (cheetah, puma, jaguar, panther, tiger, leopard, snow leopard, lion, mountain lion ... is a cougar next? "that's what she said!" except a cougar [puma concolor] is a puma or mountain lion depending on region so they are already duplicating). As long as they stay with cat names, She is happy.  :nods:

P.S. The thread title says 10.6.8 ... shouldn't it be 10.8?
P.P.S. The one decent thing in this update? That Safari will *finally* have a single input for search/URLs. (Can we get Duck Duck Go as a default too?)
P.P.P.S. As discussed here when Mac App Store was announced, it looks like we *are* moving toward an Apple-approved software model. Called that one, huh? (You'll note that Gatekeeper's default is for App Store and certified devs only. Did you like indie games? Oh, sorry about that 10.9 owners.)
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#8 Matt Diamond

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 02:49 PM

View PostDaveyJJ, on 16 February 2012 - 01:00 PM, said:

As discussed here when Mac App Store was announced, it looks like we *are* moving toward an Apple-approved software model. Called that one, huh? (You'll note that Gatekeeper's default is for App Store and certified devs only. Did you like indie games? Oh, sorry about that 10.9 owners.)

No, I still don't think so. (For one thing, that would severely impact Apple's scientific computing market.)

Today, Windows 7 inundates me with prompts when apps do things it thinks are slightly suspicious. I have to continually give my permission. The natural response to this is to deactivate most of the security.. Seems to me that Apple's strategy will allow developers to register their apps, which will allow the OS to bother the user less often.

Look at it another way: the users that most need protecting from insecure computers are the majority: the casual users. They buy either software boxed or from the Mac App Store. They expect things to "just work". Apple is making "secure mode" the default for them, good for people who don't fiddle with settings. Many users will only be running reputable apps and will hardly notice Gatekeeper. The rest of us will have no trouble running whatever we want, if I understand the feature correctly.

And what's the alternative? Apple could continue to allow the platform to be completely open; historically that has been a disaster on the Windows side, and as Mac marketshare increases and as MS continually improves PC security, one day Macs will be the low-hanging fruit for attackers.
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#9 teflon

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Posted 16 February 2012 - 03:44 PM

I'm happy with Lion, and think that everything in Mountain Lion is a sensible enough evolution of that. However, if they're not careful, Apple will cross one of several lines in functionality that I won't be able to accept.

  • So, the breaking out of functionality from Mail and iCal to create Reminders and so on, I think makes perfect sense. If you have an iOS device, the join together with iCloud will work so much better for this. Big thumbs up.
  • iMessage being brought to Mac is a good move too. The beta sounds a bit shaky, when integrating with other services, but this might hinge on adding support for those to iOS, so that you have a more seamless chat environment, as you move around. This is actually something I believe Palm had in WebOS, so it's pretty sensible to add on all counts.
  • Notifications centre seems a bit janky to me. I don't think it should take up more space than the alerts need. It's also tied to apps only from the App Store, but presumably Growl would be able to work around that, since it takes other app calls, and could then drop them into NC for you (A bit like the rather clever Launch app on iOS).
  • Airplay. Long time coming, and simply a fast, snappy extension of screen sharing tech. Good.
  • Game Centre. Makes sense, and offers cross platform play, which could be interesting. Also good.
  • iCloud's further integration. This is obviously where Apple are pushing, and on the whole I think it's pretty decent. I'm yet to really figure out how you'll be pulling documents from there, and mixing between what's on your HDD and what's on iCloud... That's an area of confusion for me. It also highlights the lack of a file manager of any real sort on iOS, and that maybe it could be useful to have some form of hierarchical layout viewable somewhere there too.
  • Gatekeeper, as a security measure, is spot on. As is the default setting of having it open to the App Store and signed apps allowed. I don't think there's any real limits to who can get a signed app, so that doesn't prevent indie devs from getting their games signed or anything. As long as this stays an option to turn off, I'm happy that it's there.

That, I think, is the key point right at the end. With everything they've added in Lion and Mountain Lion, from Launchpad to Gatekeeper, these are all still currently optional things that whilst on by default, you can happily ignore and still do things the old way. Should they ever do away with the Finder, or lock away Terminal access, or yes, even lock it down to the Mac App Store only, that will be the day I don't upgrade anymore.

Whilst these things are quite real possibilities, I think that Apple do still realise that people don't want that. The Finder happily coexists with, and is a necessary cohabitant with Spotlight, for example. Computers need to have this kind of flexibility, and options extending out of that, and right now they seem to have a handle on this.

So whether they are taking a softly, softly approach to locking down OSX, or whether they're simply adding features, and not subtracting, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.


EDIT
Oh wait, I did think of one thing that still annoys the heck out of me in Lion, which is the auto-save functionality. Auto-saving and versions is awesome in some cases, but not in others. Sadly, that's in the hands of the app developers, and some are right dolts when it comes to listening to their actual users (Pixelmator! DAMN YOU!).
The plus side is that 10.8 apparently will make it easier to duplicate and rename, somehow. They should call it "save as..." or something.
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#10 Janichsan

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 02:29 AM

Two more things about 10.8: the "Mac" part in the name is gone for good, as is Software Update: all updates and patches are now distributed via the Mac App Store.

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#11 AussieMacGamer

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 02:58 AM

View PostJanichsan, on 17 February 2012 - 02:29 AM, said:

Two more things about 10.8: the "Mac" part in the name is gone for good, as is Software Update: all updates and patches are now distributed via the Mac App Store.

These are literally the only two things i don't like about Mountain Lion.

Quote

but this whole iOS-ification of OS X just doesn't sit with me well. Frankly, at this point I wouldn't even be surprised if both of them would sort of merge completely sometime down the line.

Ahh, ye-olde-overreaction. Literally all Apple are doing is creating another layer for users to interact with their operating system. I thought for a while it was inferior to the way Windows is about to change over (and in some ways it is), but realistically it is just a different way of addressing the same issue.

Where Microsoft is going for the Two-Face Metro/Classic, both sides of the coin thing; Lion has a layer of features completely useless to power users, but in most cases it doesn't limit them at all. The only thing that really threatens it is the App store. Apple, nor Microsoft will never force us to use our computers like our touch devices, they are merely taking the best design aspects of their portable systems and appropriating them to their desktop operating systems.

It is a good idea and i think it will result in more people buying Macs. More interestingly on the windows side i think it could lead to some superdevice that perfectly merges the casual use experience of a Tablet and a more full on computer workstation

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#12 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 04:37 AM

View PostMister Mumbles, on 16 February 2012 - 11:51 AM, said:

Also, yearly OS updates will mean even more apps will break on a regular basis.
I'm hoping that the number of API changes will be cut in half, for each release, if they come quicker. That would actually make it easier for devs, since they only have to take care of a few changes every ~12 months, and not a buttload of changes every 24 months.

View PostDaveyJJ, on 16 February 2012 - 01:00 PM, said:

P.S. The thread title says 10.6.8 ... shouldn't it be 10.8?
Thread title says "10.8", you've clearly had too much coffee!

Quote

P.P.S. The one decent thing in this update? That Safari will *finally* have a single input for search/URLs. (Can we get Duck Duck Go as a default too?)
Good for power users, bad for Average Joe and his mom. I know I'm going to have trouble explaining that to my mom at least. I'd rather have the field there as usual, and then when you slide it to the side, it integrates into the location field.
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#13 Eric5h5

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 06:04 AM

View PostThain Esh Kelch, on 17 February 2012 - 04:37 AM, said:

Good for power users, bad for Average Joe and his mom.
Actually it's specifically for Average Joe + Mom.  "Average" people just try to type search stuff in the address field ALL the time.

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#14 UmarOMC1

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 08:33 AM

View PostDaveyJJ, on 16 February 2012 - 01:00 PM, said:

P.S. The thread title says 10.6.8 ... shouldn't it be 10.8?

You caught that, too?

I'm wondering what 10.8 will add for gamers? OpenGL 4.x? Drivers or ROM flashers for off-the-shelf PC AMD/NVIDIA cards? Twitter's blocked through my router... Facebook and MySpace, too (omg, no way!)... anything besides everything being 64-bit?
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#15 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 08:34 AM

View PostEric5h5, on 17 February 2012 - 06:04 AM, said:

Actually it's specifically for Average Joe + Mom.  "Average" people just try to type search stuff in the address field ALL the time.

--Eric
Interesting, I would have though it otherwise. I guess they know what they are doing (In most cases).
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#16 Janichsan

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 10:53 AM

View PostUmarOMC1, on 17 February 2012 - 08:33 AM, said:

I'm wondering what 10.8 will add for gamers? OpenGL 4.x? Drivers or ROM flashers for off-the-shelf PC AMD/NVIDIA cards?
Obviously Gamecenter. With it's features, it could be a serious contestant to GameRanger or maybe even Steam (minus the shop in the latter case). OpenGL 4.x would be nice, but I don't really count on it. And doesn't Lion already support many standard graphic cards built for Windows PCs? I remember having read something like this.

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#17 Thain Esh Kelch

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 11:04 AM

View PostJanichsan, on 17 February 2012 - 10:53 AM, said:

Obviously Gamecenter. With it's features, it could be a serious contestant to GameRanger or maybe even Steam (minus the shop in the latter case).
Except the MAS is already there. I think GameCenter could go on to be a defacto standard on the Mac.. Depends on how big Apple is going to make it I guess.. I was surprised when they announced it for iOS.

Quote

And doesn't Lion already support many standard graphic cards built for Windows PCs? I remember having read something like this.
Really?
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#18 Frigidman™

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 11:13 AM

Apple... killing the mac for me one OS at a time.
Apple... making an OS for Idiots.

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#19 ltcommander.data

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 11:17 AM

View PostThain Esh Kelch, on 17 February 2012 - 11:04 AM, said:

Except the MAS is already there. I think GameCenter could go on to be a defacto standard on the Mac.. Depends on how big Apple is going to make it I guess.. I was surprised when they announced it for iOS.
I believe Apple made iCloud integration exclusive to apps available through MAS. Does anyone know if they did the same for Game Center? Hopefully not, since that would likely discourage adoption.

#20 Hansi

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Posted 17 February 2012 - 01:13 PM

View PostFrigidman, on 17 February 2012 - 11:13 AM, said:

Apple... killing the mac for me one OS at a time.
Apple... making an OS for Idiots.

You don't need to use the new stuff if you don't want to.