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Summary:

So after getting over my initial reaction that the black iPod Nano is the official iPod of Pirates, Ninjas, and the Flying Spaghetti Monster, I realized a few things about Apple’s big releases: iPod stuff I’m going to hold out until the black look is applied […]

So after getting over my initial reaction that the black iPod Nano is the official iPod of Pirates, Ninjas, and the Flying Spaghetti Monster, I realized a few things about Apple’s big releases:

iPod stuff

  • I’m going to hold out until the black look is applied to the larger iPods.
  • The armbands are not in black. They are however in every other color that I would never purchase them in.
  • That phone is gross looking. Combined with the fact that Cingular is the only company selling it, and with a contract, and I will definitely be saying No Thanks
  • I will eventually get an iPod. That’s right, I do not have one, but that is because I’ve been holding out for a solid black iPod. No, the U2 iPod is not acceptable.
  • Should there not be a fully black big iPod by January, I’ll probably be purchasing a iPod Nano in full black

iTunes stuff

  • Finally Apple is trying to do something different with Textured (brushed).
  • This spells the death of Brushed, from what I can tell. Take a look at this mock up of the style applied to the Finder. It makes the finder just look better. You can click it if you want to make it bigger.

    Mock up of iTunes 5 toolbar on finder

  • iTunes now behaves a lot like my other applications, and it seems to be faster.
  • For the most part, they did a good job with it. Some of you will disagree, noting the corners and that sort of thing. I like the new corners, sosumi
  • It takes up less space for the same content!
  • They have kept the distributed notification in iTunes since 4.7. My fear was that in 5.0 of iTunes the distributed notification would be pulled. Let me explain this point some. Basically, with iTunes 4.6 and below there is only one way to find out what is playing. That way is via polling. This is a programming term, so let me explain. It’s like asking your mom if you’re there yet. Over. And over. And over.

    Now, in the computing world, polling is higher on resource usage than say, listening for a notification. The good news is, that since iTunes 4.7, Apple has been doing just that, sending out something called Distributed Notifications. There are whole sets of tools designed to help the developer listen to these notifications. And so, things like Synergy, GrowlTunes and QuickSilver no longer had to poll iTunes at arbitrary times to get the information they needed.

    Now as a Project Manager, I was really worried that we would have to go back to polling with iTunes 5. The reason being that the distributed notifications within iTunes were not really advertised. It took someone actually testing Growl to find it (a guy named Bobbus). You have no idea how worried I was while waiting for iTunes to download and install on my iBook. You also have no idea how relieved I was when GrowlTunes posted a notification to Growl when I started playing My Chemical Romance after the install. I am very happy that it looks like this notification is sticking around for good.

  1. On Metal
    The Finder mockup is sweet. I must say that I’ve never had much love for metal, especially because it is so often abused by Mac developers, creating what is almost an underclass of software rather akin to the thousands of pointless utilities that clutter a Windows installation. So roll on the new metal!

    Incidentally, I can’t help but be amused about how quickly metal has become passé, and how – I suppose partly because it’s the Mac – user interfaces have to be fashionable. Oh well, as long as they stay easy to use…

    On Developing
    Not being a developer myself, I’m perhaps not the best person to comment, but I was under the impression that Apple doesn’t generally try to screw developers over – my guess is that iTunes distributed notifications were implemented to help the Growl team, etc., and there is no reason for them to remove the code afterwards. In any case, most of the techie types at Apple likely have Growl at the very least installed anyway…

    Gareth

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  2. Actually, brushed metal has been passe for a very long time. For instance, we dropped it in Adium a very long time ago. A lot of applications that are brushed just don’t look good that way. It’s just that Brushed requires some sort of bulkiness on the side to look good, and only a few apps can pull that off.

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  3. Oh, and Apple probably included the notification in iTunes it for the iTunes widget, not Growl.

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  4. Oh, and Apple probably included the notification in iTunes it for the iTunes widget, not Growl.

    True dat.

    So the trick is to get them to need it in some different, non-competing way, so that they will implement it, to the benefit of all of Mac-using mankind…

    *starts plotting*

    Gareth :P

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  5. So the trick is to get them to need it in some different, non-competing way, so that they will implement it, to the benefit of all of Mac-using mankind…

    Well, actually, Growl and all the Extras are licensed so that they could snag it at any time they wanted to. They probably would implement their own system though. I’m sure they understand the need for it.

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  6. I’ve got a question. The Apple store says:
    Mac System Requirements:
    • A Mac with built-in USB 2.0

    Not USB 1.1 Support??
    Can anyone confirm this?

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  7. USB 1 is usually supported.
    BTW, how did he get the finder to look like that? Mine is still brushed…

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  8. BTW, how did he get the finder to look like that? Mine is still brushed…

    Right above the picture it reads “Take a look at this mock up…”

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  9. Oh. It would be cool if Apple actually let you do that.

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