WWDC - Snow Leopard


Wow. Someone woke up on the wrong side of the bed, huh? At least you’re on the right side of the Atlantic, I suppose.

I have to say, I admire the thoroughness of your post. You managed to be insulting not just to the Americans in this forum, but also to the photographers, filmmakers and musicians (I’m sure they were all as surprised as I was to discover that their art is superficial.)

I’ve heard a lot of criticism of Apple over the years, but your is definitely unique. Forgive me if I’m oversimplifying, but your complaint seems to be along the lines of “Yes, Apple has created some of the most innovative, useful, productivity-enhancing, beautiful products ever, and they allow me to use a wonderful tool like Scrivener, but in the end they suck because I can’t do footnotes like I want to, even though I can, but I can’t do it without another application so they suck and iPhones suck and cell phones suck, and anybody who doesn’t do what I do also sucks.”

Well argued, friend!

Mr Coffee, might you be taking Mr Tim a little too seriously? What I read was “I don’t like the fact that my favorite company is shifting focus to the infantile population in America.” I think )that is a dangerous activity for me) that we are both able to agree that the infantile population in America is probably closer to a true majority than most suspect. And the activities of the afore mentioned population line up with what Mr Tim mentions.

Could his post have been a little clearer? Certainly. But it might, just possible be true that you need another gulp of coffee. Or maybe scotch. Then again, I am the one without a head. What do I know.

I’m not going to fault Apple here.

They haven’t let the text tools just languish. Leopard attempted to unify some things and improve others but I’m sure things still need to be fleshed out.

For Snow Leopard I’m thrilled to have concurrency API that make it as simple as it’s going to get, a move towards using the GPU for general purpose computing and a recommittment to Services and further evolution of Applescript.

I’d love to see 10.7 offer outstanding text services and the largest update to scripting support that we’ve seen. Let’s be honest though …Apple never said Snow Leopard would be chalk full of new features. I guess the’re saving a little meat on the bone for 10.7 :smiley:

Brother Tim: A few months ago I would have agreed with you 100%, but then I got an iPhone. 99 bucks for 8 gigs. I don’t have a single tune or photo on it. It’s a mobile computer that fits in my pocket, and I have it full of text and data apps that support my work as a writer. See editorialengine.com/?p=1554

With it, I can take notes, look up data, consult library catalogs, order offprints, and store reference books. (Also make phone calls, which is handy.) The new 3 GS has voice recognition. Down the line, we’ll have image recognition. I’ll be able to walk in the woods, show the “phone” a leaf, and get an ID on the species. It’s a computer, not a silly gadget.

Now, because July 4th is coming, I must rise to the defense of our national literacy. Despite what you think, not every American is a moron. (Even Wock and Jaysen write purty well, when they have access to corn likker.) I was recently in Europe and saw lots of phoning and texting. Sure, new tools may be used for dumb tasks. True of all technology, back to quill pens and papyrus. But a mass market enables writers and scholars to play, too; and no telling where we’ll take it. --D

(PS: “costumers” and “illitteracy” in your rant are priceless!)

That I need another gulp of coffee is without question. That it needs a shot (or four) of whiskey is beyond doubt. That I took Tim’s post a little too seriously… I don’t know. I own an iPhone, I listen to music, and I use Final Cut and Aperture to make my living. Oh, and I live in America. As I read some of the previous posts, that makes me an illiterate idiot, sucking valuable resources away from serious people. Can’t see how I possibly could have taken that the wrong way.

Dear friends, don’t shoot at me! I just wanted to be a little provocative; and a knew I would get the reactions that a got.

Nobody has to explain to me that the United States have some of the best universities in the world, that the majority, or at least a very substantial part, of Noble Prize winners are American, and so on.

And yet … but I won’t insist on this point, which is completely off-topic here, because I don’t want to offend anybody.

But let me insist instead on another point, which is on topic: I think it’s almost Apple’s moral duty to invest some more money into the further development of their text editor, which has been incorporated in so many applications on their platform.

@ Druid: thanks for pointing out to me the advantages of the iPhone. But I’m still doing most of the things that you mention with my MacBook, which as a computer I greatly prefer to the iPhone, because of its far larger screen. It’s true that a MacBook is far less transportable than an MacBook, but nothing is perfect!

And as far as illit(t)eracy is concerned: thanks, jebni, for correcting me! I’m usually writing in languages in which words deriving from the Latin word LITTERA are spelled with double t; but now I know that in English one t is enough!


Thank you for the list of utilities, but it strenghtened the idea I’m out of the iPhone business. When trying to get information, the links open iTunes, and there is no way to increase the font size in it. Can someone really manage to read what is written in those microscopic lines? Not my old, too old eyes.



Yes, all the iPhone apps are sold via the iTunes store. Most of the apps are cheap, and many are free. That’s a good part of their success. As for the font size in iTunes, I believe you can turn on Zoom for all applications via the Universal Access panel in System Preferences.

But I understand that you and Tim prefer to do your work on computers with larger screens and keyboards. My point was only that the iPhone is a useful accessory for a writer, especially while traveling. The perfect combination, IMHO, would be an iPhone tethered to a new 13-inch MacBook Pro. Tethering turns the iPhone into a modem, with access to WI-Fi and AT&T networks.

Imagine sitting in a cafe in Firenze and rapping online with the likes of Vic-K. I rest my case.


But, Druid, let me confess: when I am sitting in a café in Firenze I don’t want to be connected to any network, nor do I desire then to rap with anyone. Then I only desire to be alone with Firenze and with my cappuccino.

There is no shadow of doubt Apple have lost their focus, that, as Timotheus has mentioned, Apple have reviewed their core customer base, and that they will continue in this direction for the foreseeable future. How do I know this? Quite simply, I now have to endure people in my local waxing lyrical about the joys of Mac. Bastards! They’ve stolen my thunder. Having used Macs since the late eighties I’ve been used to being the drunk in the corner, who occasionally looked up from my Newcastle Brown to mumble incoherently ‘you wouldn’t have that problem if you had a mac’. Now every bugger has a Mac, or Apple product, and wants to enthuse about it, trying to appeal to my better nature. Well they can feck off because, this is where Timotheus gets things wrong, those superficial, illiterate types are not reserved for America alone. Here in Britain we have become inundated with them and, joy of joys, they now wish to share their adulation of all things mac with me. I would rather remove and toast my spleen over burning coals than interact with these people and yet they now consider me ‘one of them.’
This was too much to bear and so I found myself taking a stand. I have, for many years, considered myself at the forefront of gadgetry, especially anything Apple. ‘Well, no more,’ said I, ‘I will no longer be party to this exercise in dumbing down.’ Out of the window went any thought of a shiny new iPhone; down the toilet went any ideas of Palm’s new countermeasure, instead, I took a step back. I am now the proud owner of a Moleskine Notepad and a Parker 51 fountain pen. You’d be amazed how well they work together. Even better, the other half is now happy because I’m not stood in the middle of the supermarket, looking confusedly at the depleted battery symbol on my latest gadget, saying, ‘do you remember much of the shopping list?’



Here’s another proud owner of a Moleskine Notepad! For writing, however, I use a simple pencil, which (in my case at least) produces an even more delicate contact with the paper than a fountain pen. But opinions may vary on this point too!

And as far as mobile phones are concerned, I really would like to live without them. But with a wife with two jobs and two young children this is becoming increasingly difficult. So now I have a Nokia 6300 - recommended! - with a 2 megapixel camera, a radio and a lot of other useless stuff; but nowadays it’s utterly impossible to find a decent mobile phone which is just a phone. I use it two or three times a week, for conversations of fifteen seconds at most.

Never say never: but presently, it seems highly unlikely to me that I’ll ever buy an iPhone.

I confess to owning an iphone, but only for because:

  1. My RIO media player died
  2. My Sansa media player died
  3. My USB thumb media player died.
  4. M employer decided to confiscate all Blackberries then tell me I was required to be reachable 24x7.
  5. I own a mac.

Had #5 not existed a nokia or blackberry would have been my choice. But seeing as I have decided that I “want my tools to just work”, one provider for me.

As a “tech guy” I have never had a better experience of “it just works”. Thank you apple for catering to the idiot majority. Thank you more for leaving the geek in me access to the heart of the os. Oh yeah, and giving me an IDE, compiler, UI framework, a full suite of apps and a great net work of L&L style shops to do business with.

As we are crusing merrily off-topic, I’ll put in my ‘hell yeah’ for the Moleskine large ruled notebook. I have no laptop or iphone, and I have found that I do some of my very best writing in pubs. At least one here in Eugene has a ‘no laptops’ sign at the 4 stool bar.

Mostly I worry about keeping a pen handy.

“Short-sighted”… “Narrow-minded”… Myopic man Keith? Never!

Agreed. And it can only be just under the surface because there isn’t much else beyond that.

I am in the process of doing a lot of research an American intellectual life and I (as a German) can’t say I find it superficial. Quite to the contrary.
Yes, the “American Way of Life” seems appallingly materialistic and vulgar at times. But, please, where are we Europeans different?

Please understand, as an American myself I don’t believe our culture is entirely without merit, but we seem to exist on a diet of pure intellectual junk food.

Trust me, so do we. Just because we are generally speaking more liberal and tolerant doesn’t mean that we are intellectually more curious.

I use a Moleskine notebook, but the small version (with 192 pages), with the squares. Allows writing, pictures, indents, etc. Perfect for use and fits in most of my shirt pockets. I have found the Micron Archival pens work really well, but I occasionally use a Zebra, 0.5mm and even a G-2 Gel.