Monday, June 11, 2007

WWDC Keynote, 2007

I think I'll have to join in the general chorus of the underwhelmed. Bullet points:

  • The new desktop and finder sure look shiny. The dock stacks do look kind of useful, and having a dedicated downloads folder strikes me as a classic kind of Apple UI move.

  • Having the finder be visually similar to iTunes strikes me as, on balance, a good idea. And, although I don't find Cover Flow tremendously useful in iTunes, I can see a place for it in the Finder. Especially if you can page through PDF files and other similar tricks.

  • I don't think the power-user critics of the Finder are going to be much impressed, though. For one thing, no tabs. (Come to think of it, I'd like tabs in iTunes, too...)

  • It was really weird to see so much time spent on features that have already been demoed and known for a year. I was definitely hoping for more new stuff.

  • Core Animation looks really cool, and if it's half as easy to use as advertised, there's going to some very pretty Mac apps coming down the road.

  • Safari for Windows, which initially sounded kind of weird, actually makes sense to me. It's probably not a very large development effort, and anything that makes Safari more valuable as a development platform for web developers makes Safari more useful, and by extension, the Mac platform more useful.

  • I did not have good luck with the Safari betas, though. Windows side, the beta crashes when I try to set my proxy. Mac side, the address bar doesn't do anything when you enter an address. Worse, it broke the nightly WebKit builds that I've been increasingly using as my primary browser, so I had to uninstall.

  • As far as I can tell, developers seem to be downright irritated by the non-SDK announcement for the iPhone. The thing that's not clear to me is whether the webapps would have any hooks at all into the iPhone OS -- at least one of the liveblogs I was following on made it seem like there'd be some nod to tighter integration that a typical web app. Anybody else get that? Because otherwise, to go up and make the big announcement that the web, you know, still works even on an iPhone, that's just strange.

  • They placed the iPhone announcement for 6PM, which feels more humane than making people stand in line for a 9AM open

  • A lot of notable non-mentions: ZFS, iLife, iWork, any hardware, resolution independence, and so on...