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A reason why Mac OS X Pather's Finder is Brushed Metal...

post #1 of 34
Thread Starter 
You know, I have been thinking for a long time why Apple decided to make the Finder brushed metal. I mean, there has to be some reason or ulterior motive. And I think I might have an idea of where Apple might be going with this.

First, take a look at every database driven iApp Apple distributed on Mac OS X...

iTunes
iPhoto
iCal
Address Book

They all have a very similar brushed metal interface.

Now just stay with me here for a moment.

What if in Mac OS X.4 Tiger Apple integrates these items even deeper into the system and allows you to access your data from the Finder.

I'm not saying that they would completely eliminate the iApps totally, but maybe include some of their components and functionality for quick access.

Well for this all to be seamless and still have a consistent look and feel, the Mac OS X Finder would have to resemble these iApps so it doesn't confuse the user.

Well, Panther's Finder is brushed metal, and it has a side panel also. Maybe Apple is trying to get users used to a new Finder look before laying many of the heavy changes on us.

What do you think?

I would love to hear some of your ideas or comments on this matter.


Mike
post #2 of 34
Many people might think its a conspiracy but i think it may be what they're trying to do. i would love it too.
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post #3 of 34
Thread Starter 
Think of it like this.

Pretend your using the Mac OS X Finder to find a particular picture you took about a month ago. Well instead of having to open up and use iPhoto or actually navigate through a bunch of folders of pictures, you could use a special Finder "mode" that acts similar to iPhoto and resembles its interface.

You would have access to all your albums and smart albums along with all the meta data for all the pictures. The only thing missing would be iPhoto only stuff like cropping your photos, removing red-eye, etc.

This could also be applied to using the Finder to locate a particular song.

You don't have to take a bunch of apps and merge them with the Finder and force the Finder to do all their work. Instead you approach this the sensible way and only integrate each of these app's powerful browsing and searching capabilities. Because that's all people really want to use the Finder for -- finding files.

Of course, I hope that if Apple implements something similar to this, they still allow you to browse your computer the way you do now. I guess you would have to have some type of option or toggle button to activate these special Finder "modes".

Just my two cents.

Mike
post #4 of 34
I don't think I would love it. Maybe I don't want to use the iApps for all they do? So if the Finder was trying to work with them all the time it would annoy me to no end.
post #5 of 34
There is no excuse for interface inconsistency. Either metal everything or metal nothing. The only possible exception is professional audio/video apps used in dimly lit studios.

Now it looks as if developer A likes Aqua look while developer B likes metal, Scorpions and AC/DC.
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post #6 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by MPMoriarty
Think of it like this.

Pretend your using the Mac OS X Finder to find a particular picture you took about a month ago. Well instead of having to open up and use iPhoto or actually navigate through a bunch of folders of pictures, you could use a special Finder "mode" that acts similar to iPhoto and resembles its interface.

Mike

I would disagree with your statement. To me, Apple wants you to use iPhoto or iTunes to organize data. It doesn't matter where the files are on the drive, they're rationally viewed and organized through their respective applications. By having the Finder take on some of this responsibility, a la XP, would confuse the purpose of the Finder. Why have iPhoto or iTunes then?

What is the purpose of the Finder? We will have to wait for WWDC to find out.
post #7 of 34
well, right now, it seems like third party developers are a bit on the fence with regards to user interface as well, as a lot of smaller apps i find have options for "metal windows" or "aqua windows," as if they were just straight up themes.

mind you, apple has made mistakes in the past -- remember the quicktime player with the round volume tuner instead of the slider? they finally corrected that, much to steve's chagrin, as e was definitely trying to put a hi-fi stereo face on this baby, and people didn't want it as much as they wanted usability.

steve may have that "vision thing," but i'd like him to stay the hell away from the design and interface departments.
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post #8 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by MPMoriarty
What if in Mac OS X.4 Tiger Apple integrates these items even deeper into the system and allows you to access your data from the Finder.

I believe that your thinking is on the right track...but upside down. Think not "integrate iApps into Finder" but, instead "iApps as a kind of 'specialized Finders'."

Follow me here.

Let's look at the Apple metal apps:

iCal
AddressBook
iPhoto
iTunes
iMovie
Finder

(NOTE: There are rumors of Mail going this way with Tiger, and it would fit into what I am saying here too.)

At first blush there seems little in common across these apps. But look a little deeper. The first four are about managing data...specific types of data each (calendars/events, contact/calling cards, pictures and music). They are, for all practical purposes specialized "viewers and organizers" of specialized data. iTunes and iPhoto for example are NOT music playing and photo editing applications...that work is all done by QuickTime...the underlying media platform/engine. iTunes and iPhoto are to a) viewers into the data store for the media, b) organizing tools, and c) a way to invoke the QuickTime functionality.

iCal and AddressBook are not much different. They are simply viewers and organizers of some defined data element.

iMovie is a bit different. Not really an organizer of video media (except within a single project, so perhaps it qualifies this way)...but it also is largely a front end to QuickTime.

For a speculative moment let us consider iMail (the metalization of Mail). I could imagine a revamp of the UI that moves the folders over to left and into a panel a la playlists, calendars, albums, etc. It has a search field (a la iTunes, AddressBook and iCal. It becomes a viewer, organizer and composer of specialized data items (email messages). I can even imagine "smart folders" in iMail too.

Stay with me for a moment...

It is true that the analogy doesn't always map across all of these applications (iMovie is an example). But of course it wouldn't...this is only a "model" a way of thinking about all of these applications in a consistent way. And it is not entirely invalid.

Finally, let me address some of the inconsistencies among them (iPhoto search field in the wrong place, no search in iPhoto, inspectors, etc. inconsistent)...

As a software developer I can tell you this about software...it is part invention and part discovery...part vision and part accident...part plan and part serendipity. I expect Apple would tell you the same. Telling you this helps me to tell you that this concept I have outlined may be alive an well at Apple but only partly executed. Why? A variety of reasons including varying product delivery schedules and such...but, also because sometimes things things evolve or emerge more than they are envisioned and designed. Sometimes they are discovered as ideas rather than offered as visions. This being the case, it may take time for the newly "discovered vision" to take its full shape. This, I believe, is the case with the Apple metal applications. I think there is method behind what (at times) appears to be madness. There is order behind the chaos. We don't see it all...because we don't know it all...yet. But I expect we will, over time.
post #9 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by costique
There is no excuse for interface inconsistency. Either metal everything or metal nothing. The only possible exception is professional audio/video apps used in dimly lit studios.

Now it looks as if developer A likes Aqua look while developer B likes metal, Scorpions and AC/DC.

Inconsistency is not inherently bad. Likewise, consistency can be a bad thing.

I am in no way hampered or confused by doorknobs in my house being either brass or silver colored.

I am also not confused by differently colored vehicles on the road. It is a very good thing that taxis, fire trucks, ambulances, and law enforcement vehicles have a distinct look.

Creating completely identical applications is not the pinnacle of interface design.
post #10 of 34
Regarding appearance + UI inconsistency in the OS, check out BuonRotto's excellent post in this thread. (About halfway down on the page.)

Here's an excerpt:

Quote:
It's a totally different approach to these things. Rather than making seismic shifts in the UI once in a while, applications introduce new ideas in smaller doses at a steady pace...

(p.s. Is there any way to link directly to a post, BTW? I had thought there was, but can no longer find it.)
post #11 of 34
This idea sounds more like how Microsoft views applications, and to some degree how Explorer works. The idea there is that one big application handles lots of different things with a similar set of tools. In general, Apple seems to prefer having distinct sets of tools for a given task or medium, so they have a ton of apps but share the data well with one another. The benefit of what you''re talking about is that the Finder can act as a clearing house for this stuff and act on it the way the Finder would act on any other file without the need for elaborate and confusing iPhoto library structures and such, and that whatever the Finder does to this stuff will be reflected in the iLife app as well. The strength of metadata and databases, especially a single database for the system that all apps can plug into is that the info can be shared easily. So instead of going to one app to do what others do better, it allows for more apps to do specific things and stay out of the way otherwise. To a fair degree, this makes a central Finder much less important to the user experience, though I don't think it makes one obsolete by any means.

So I think the point of having a metal Finder is to make is stand out less as its own thing, as part of the process to decentralize the user experience as being defined through a main application and make the experience focus more on the data that would be accessed through many points (apps) instead.

[EDIT]This is why the Dock is going to get more important as a Finder and a central app concept becomes less important.
post #12 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by BuonRotto
This idea sounds more like how Microsoft views applications, and to some degree how Explorer works. The idea there is that one big application handles lots of different things with a similar set of tools. In general, Apple seems to prefer having distinct sets of tools for a given task or medium, so they have a ton of apps but share the data well with one another.

Agreed. Microsoft appears to be in the "Swiss Army Knife" business. Apple does not appear to be.

The "Swiss Army Knife" approach to software applications makes some sense in theory but is usually executed poorly and doesn't work well in practice. The separate, distinct applications that manage some specific type of object/data but communicate cleanly, through (preferably) open and standard protocols and data formats would be my preferred way of building these things.
post #13 of 34
With all these iApps apple is always designing new ways to find things and to organize data, i.e. Smart Playlists. When they find one of these new ways of working with data they end up moving it too the other applications of the same type for example Smart Albums in iPhoto. With the Finder I think Apple is moving towards a more iApp feel with the same tech that powers iTunes and iPhoto. In another post I talked about how Apple was going to move to a 'Smart" everything in Tiger, with these smart containers being in every app that uses a sidebar type UI.
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post #14 of 34
Another example: instant text search/filtering. To some degree, the options (gear) pop-up menu isn't quite as pervasive, but is another such case.
post #15 of 34
Thread Starter 
The only reason I brought up about Apple integrating their iApps into the Finder is because I am trying to think how they are going to implement a meta driven file system without confusing the hell of out their users.

I keep hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.4 Tiger having a meta data driven file system, but how will this work.

You see, I like how iTunes manages all my music and keeps so much information about each song stored. I would love to be able to do this with other files on my computer such as PDFs, Word files, etc.

Now I can see the Finder evolving into an iTunes like interface for managing your files. But how would the Finder handle meta data when you are browsing folders of music. Would Apple come up with a new way to display all the info about your songs in the Finder or would they use an interface and approach that already works so well...the iTunes approach.

This is why I suggested Apple might be wanting to later integrate the iTunes or iPhoto interface into the Finder. For times when you are searching for music files or pictures.

I'm sorry. Having meta data to better organize files sounds fantastic, but I just don't see how it can done using the trademarked Apple's "ease of use" approach.

I have seen how the operating system BeOS handled it, and I don't know if their way would work on Mac OS X. For example...

On BeOS, all e-mail files were stored as actual files on your system, not in some email program. You could easily access these files from the Tracker (BeOS file navigator). Each file had various meta data such as "TO:", "FROM", "DATE RECEIVED", etc.

This was great on BeOS, but how would this work on Mac OS X. Apple relies heavily on its Mail app to handle all e-mail related tasks. It doesn't store e-mails as separate files on your system. They are stored in the standard .mbox file format.

I guess I am just having a hard time picturing how Apple is going to pull off an easy to use meta data driven file system. But let me tell you something. I have complete faith in Apple that they can. And when they do, it is going to be something amazingly simple and very powerful at the same time.

Mike
post #16 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by Chris Cuilla

(NOTE: There are rumors of Mail going this way with Tiger, and it would fit into what I am saying here too.)

Yeah, but it was rumored to go metal with Panther and that never materialized.
post #17 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by MPMoriarty
On BeOS, all e-mail files were stored as actual files on your system, not in some email program. You could easily access these files from the Tracker (BeOS file navigator). Each file had various meta data such as "TO:", "FROM", "DATE RECEIVED", etc.

This is where Longhorn is going, where instead of Apps storing stuff like email or your contacts in their own database formats they would just use the file systems meta data and then would present the data in a more presentable way. Currently Apple uses different databases for each app. In the write ups about LH the entire concept is that you could say run a search for Bill Smith and then get all the information on your computer about him, email, contact info, documents, images.

One has to wonder if Apple does move towards a meta data file system what will they do with the current ones they have put into place with iPhoto, iTunes, Mail, Address Book, etc. They have built a bunch of different meta data systems to organize the data in which a system wide meta data rich system was designed to help organize. Do they absorb these Apps into the Finder, I think not since that would be very un-Apple. Or do they move these Apps off their current proprietary systems and onto the File Systems meta data. One would then have to ask what a search in the Finder would show you, would the 'Bill Smith' Example work? Would you get results of both your files, pictures and even emails sent/received? Currently with email you wouldn't since your mail is stored in clumps corresponding to your folders in mail. Meta data is good at describing a bunch of files and then searching them but seems rather stupid to describe a mbox file containing 2000 emails.

The bottom line is that it is not as easy as making the file system use meta data and call it a day. Apple would basically have to rewrite many of their current apps to make the system worth while.
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post #18 of 34
hello togehter,

do you all remember open doc?

the first day i heard about open doc i was amazed what that means. what kind of new way people start to user the computer.

the idea of a document centered os is great. but they couln'd do it lastime. cause there was no way comerical sowftware companys as adobe or quark to support it. nor today but there is a new strengh apple comes up itself. intigrated applications. you can talk about all the iapps. but please keep also in mind that dvdstudio work perfect with the music library of itunes and the images of iphoto. i think apple will plug all peaces so together that you won't even recognize in future that you change inbetween two applications or the finder and applications.

i think open doc is the hole idea of unix.

reco
post #19 of 34
Cocoa objects and shared frameworks from the purchase of NeXT basically are OpenDoc, but in full working order and fully extensible. When you combine Cocoa's object-oriented approach to code -- where an app will inherit a piece of code when it's changed by referencing/linking to it rather than copying it -- with metadata and a centralized database to track all of it, you have a pervasive toolbox that any app can draw from and build on.

I think the database part of any future release of OS X would be a fairly subtle change from some of the things we have now. We have databases for iTunes, iPhoto, the Address Book, and so forth, so those would appear more or less the same with some potential for better integration and sharing of their neighbor apps. The Finder would probably get a slew of new view options per kind of data, and the source view idea might be pushed further with more intelligent shortcuts for certain content (smart folders or something). More importantly, third party applications could get into the act more easily and participate in all this sharing of data too.

I think it's important to differentiate, for our sake, of data on the back end and the UI on the front end, the two being orthogonal to one another. It's liike this now, you can open a Photoshop file in Preview and stuff, but it's less flexible. We're talking about points of access, different means or tools of seeing and manipulating the same stuff. I think the front end won't look very different but will give Apple more room to grow the UI as technology changes on the back end.

I see the Dock as the key. It will control access to a lot of different UIs and acess points to this data for the user. The user will orient him or herself from it rather than using the Finder for this purpose.
post #20 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by Ra
Yeah, but it was rumored to go metal with Panther and that never materialized.

True. And maybe it WAS but didn't make the cut for one reason or another. Delayed to another release as a result? Just because we hear of something, and then don't see it happen a) doesn't mean it never existed, and b) doesn't mean it will never happen.
post #21 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by BuonRotto
...The strength of metadata and databases, especially a single database for the system that all apps can plug into is that the info can be shared easily. So instead of going to one app to do what others do better, it allows for more apps to do specific things and stay out of the way otherwise. To a fair degree, this makes a central Finder much less important to the user experience, though I don't think it makes one obsolete by any means.
...

The more i read about that "metadata thing" the more i understand it funny

seriously, - two points i am not sure about:

1. i am a bit afraid that the entire system would rely on one single system wide database, well, metabase. I instantly recall "registry" on windows. prove me wrong

2. why does this makes a central Finder much less important? The Macintosh Finder will always be the center of all user (inter-) activity. Otherwise it wouldn't be a Macintosh Os. imho. I don't say mac os X will steadily stay the same like it is. Of course there will be improvements, finetunings and so on BUT the finder will remain as the center of all activity.

btw, services are an example of how different apps could use the same house, no?

my 2 cents, though.
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post #22 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by Vox Barbara
1. i am a bit afraid that the entire system would rely on one single system wide database, well, metabase. I instantly recall "registry" on windows. prove me wrong

Here's a discussion about metadata that might help.

Someone with more technical experience with this stuff would have to say. My impression is that the registry is a different animal. It appears to control low-level data about the hardware, the user accounts, preferences, code libraries and such that I don't think our idea of a database-driven filesystem would deal with. The registry seems to be part kernel and extensions a la OS 9, part framework and part database. I thin it might just be for reasons of predictability. If all metadata is stored in one place, all apps always know where to find what they're looking for. The BD makes sure that the apps and the users aren't overwhelmed with impertinent stuff.

I've also wondered why a decentralized DB system wouldn't be preferred for the security/failsafe reasons you're thinking of. That's the one big reason I can think of.

Quote:
2. why does this makes a central Finder much less important? The Macintosh Finder will always be the center of all user (inter-) activity. Otherwise it wouldn't be a Macintosh Os. imho. I don't say mac os X will steadily stay the same like it is. Of course there will be improvements, finetunings and so on BUT the finder will remain as the center of all activity.

The reason I think the Finder will become less important and "just another app" in a truer sense is that, with all these apps plugging into this DB under the hood, you don't need to find things through the Finder nearly as much any more. Think about it: if your toolset -- the apps- can see or communicate with one another with no intermediary, i.e., the Finder because they all read form the same database and can interpret data for one another, when would you use the Finder? Imagine something akin to what the iLife suite does now, but pervasive and totally non-linear. There will be occasion, but if you have your workflow using a bunch of apps that are in the Dock when you start up, you would mostly go straight into that workflow from there and skip the middleman as it were. This is all to say that people can change how they work, and newer users or those who look for this will likely have an easier time of it. Current users wouldn't have to change how they work per se. It's not like the Finder would be crippled or disappear, just that it would be an extra step.

I imagine there's going to be some collective letdown if/when this database-driven metadata system comes out for consumers. The subtle differences in how one can work will probably catch on slowly and people will need time to realize what they could do with it that they couldn't do before. I don't think much will need to change on the outside.

Quote:
btw, services are an example of how different apps could use the same house, no?

Services are just an extension of pasteboard (aka, clipboard) functionality, but that's the gist of what it's trying to do. If the database were a car, the current pasteboard would be a bicycle -- with training wheels.
post #23 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by BuonRotto
Imagine something akin to what the iLife suite does now, but pervasive and totally non-linear. There will be occasion, but if you have your workflow using a bunch of apps that are in the Dock when you start up, you would mostly go straight into that workflow from there and skip the middleman as it were. This is all to say that people can change how they work, and newer users or those who look for this will likely have an easier time of it. Current users wouldn't have to change how they work per se. It's not like the Finder would be crippled or disappear, just that it would be an extra step.

I've seen this concept proposed a couple times now, and though I'm intrigued by it, I don't quite "see" it, so to speak.

Whether the Finder is spatial or non-, hierarchically-based or non-, grouped in dynamic sets or non- (or some complex mix of all of those), wouldn't we still use the Finder to sort and group our projects? Surely, you're not saying a user could be able to sort through and access *all* of her data from the Dock, each individual application, or an Open/Save dialog...?



It all seems a bit vague. Could you present a very specific real world scenario using this metadata-savvy post-Finder OS X, be it home, business, or "pro"?
post #24 of 34
(bump)

C'mon, I double-dog-dare you.
post #25 of 34
Whoops, missed this the first time! Can't now. I'll try tonight... maybe.
post #26 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by BuonRotto
Whoops, missed this the first time! Can't now. I'll try tonight... maybe.

watching
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post #27 of 34
Quote:
I keep hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.4 Tiger having a meta data driven file system

...just like you kept "hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.3 Panther having a meta data driven file system" and you kept "hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.2 Jaguar having a meta data driven file system."

On the one hand, it seems inevitable. On the other hand, holding your breath may not be wise...
post #28 of 34
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by John
...just like you kept "hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.3 Panther having a meta data driven file system" and you kept "hearing so much about this new release of Mac OS X.2 Jaguar having a meta data driven file system."

On the one hand, it seems inevitable. On the other hand, holding your breath may not be wise...

I never said before that I was hearing about a meta-data driven Finder in either Jaguar or Panther. Or were you just talking in the general sense that we can't expect anything until WWDC?

Mike
post #29 of 34
You may not have heard it, but it certainly has been posted and talked about for the two previous versions, often as a "sure thing." "Well, when the new Finder and metadata-driven filesystem are released in 10.2..." Oh how quickly we forget See also: the Cocoa Finder, although people seem to have finally given up on that one...
post #30 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by John
You may not have heard it, but it certainly has been posted and talked about for the two previous versions, often as a "sure thing." "Well, when the new Finder and metadata-driven filesystem are released in 10.2..." Oh how quickly we forget See also: the Cocoa Finder, although people seem to have finally given up on that one...

Oh, oh, oh! I just know Tiger's gonna have metadata. And Aqua other than blue. And 64-bit through and through. And date-sortable column view. And...

No, it seems like Apple is taking their time with this one. Which I don't mind so much, actually, as it's going to be a sea change (it seems to me) if done right, with a UI that allows you to really use that information.

Say, John. What's your take on MS's approach to metadata in Longhorn? Have you browsed through MSDN's Longhorn UE documents, and are you intrigued... or dismissive of what you see?
post #31 of 34
Quote:
Originally posted by Hobbes
Surely, you're not saying a user could be able to sort through and access *all* of her data from the Dock, each individual application, or an Open/Save dialog...?

Oh, no, not at all. I don't think the Finder is going anywhere in at least some form. We'll always need the catch-all type of file search and "digging" tool like it. I just mean that the Finder won't be where you begin your session, your day or whatever. Right now, the Finder launches automatically whenever you turn on your Mac or log in. I think you'll be able to skip that required step in the future. I think it will cease to be locked into the Dock like it is now.

Of course, open and save dialogs might become even more like the Finder so you won't need to access it through its own icon or start it up on its own. The Finder would kind of dissolve into a framework that other apps can use in some selective way most of the time, with a stand-alone Finder for other occasions, which there still be be a fair amount of. Of course the Source view/pane that the iApps use and is also now present in the open and save dialogs is another example of how apps can manage their native and associated files.

Applications from the NeXT side of the fence also use reference libraries directly in the apps. Stone's Create has a Resource Library, a bunch of files that you can organize and access from its own palette. No major voodoo, you can also access these things in the Finder easily enough. The now defunct Caffeine Software's TIFFany app has an action catalog where you can access, create, organize your various image editing tools and presets. Keynote is pretty close, but they choose to open Finder windows to access things like the image library and example layouts. It would be rather trivial to simple create a small catalog or browser palette to get to these things. SketchUp lets you organize and place components from a small browser window and drop items into your model. They're all forms of a Finder-like search and browse system. It is one area where I think we will see a kind of application integration from where it is now. Instead of making one app do all the caretaking, every app will be given the tools to do it more thoroughly, a more custom job, and take what they need from others.

Ultimately, I wonder if we'll have icons and closed files and interact with documents in the way the Finder works too. Our computers one day might be able to keep everything open and ready for access without having to double-click on an icon to open it. Maybe they will just stay open and you put them out of sight so you can peek at them at any time. How will apps work then? The Finder might not go away, but it would change quite a bit from what we know now. anyway, that's another can of worms.

I didn't mean to say that the Finder would go away, just that managing files within your apps and workflow would get streamlined and make use of the Finder more sparing. Ok, I'm babbling. Not sure what I just said, but maybe it's clearer speculation?


PS: and don't call me Shirley.
post #32 of 34
Quote:
Say, John. What's your take on MS's approach to metadata in Longhorn? Have you browsed through MSDN's Longhorn UE documents, and are you intrigued... or dismissive of what you see?

My reaction is that at least they're doing something.

Quote:
No, it seems like Apple is taking their time with this one. Which I don't mind so much, actually, as it's going to be a sea change (it seems to me) if done right, with a UI that allows you to really use that information.

Ah, another optimist "Of course they're working on it...how could they not be?" Maybe the possibility that they aren't working on it is too terrifying? I wonder if/when people will give up, if it comes to that. 10.6? 10.9? Ah, secrecy...it's partly exciting, but also partly evil...
post #33 of 34
Maybe Apple is waiting for *sigh* Microsoft? Perhaps Apple needs to keep its implementation of metadata compatible with that in Longhorn and therefore are holding off implementing it until Longhorn has shipped...
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Pismo, Deus Ex Machina.
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post #34 of 34
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Originally posted by KANE
Maybe Apple is waiting for *sigh* Microsoft? Perhaps Apple needs to keep its implementation of metadata compatible with that in Longhorn and therefore are holding off implementing it until Longhorn has shipped...

Remember when Apple was a leader in this area? Those were the days...
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