Mac OSX Leopard: The First Hour

leoparddesk.jpgYou've seen the glossy Apple OS X Leopard videos and feature lists, but installing the real thing on your own machine is never goes without a few surprises. This is live and totally unfiltered—which means you're going to be seeing everything we're seeing as we play with this OS. Here's our first hour with Leopard. 2:02 - Wilson: Yeah, except it has been confirmed: no R2D2 hologram effect!!!!!!!

2:01 - Wilson: So, you can do file sharing both ways when you're in iChat screen sharing. I can reach into your Mac and grab whatever I want. And likewise, I can drag anything from my desktop and just pass it through. Very Salvador Dali, if you think about it. Or maybe MC Escher.

1:59 - Wilson: I can totally see my dad, when he gets his new iMac, wanting me to take charge and move stuff around. It looks damn good too. Here's the thing: you can see the compression in the visuals. When you're looking at the other person's screen, if you look close, it looks like a JPEG saved at low quality. But from a few feet away, it's terribly convincing. And super fast - I am totally impressed with the speed of the iChat screen sharing.

1:57 - Wilson: Screen sharing: There are two kinds. The first kind is over your LAN, Technically, anything Leopard Mac see in the Network tab on the left, you can do screen sharing. I think you can even do it with .Mac Back to My Mac machines. The second kind is iChat Screen Sharing. What I like about that is that you get the full IT style control over the other users screen.

1:55 - Wilson: NAS—that's the problem, as Mossy pointed out. You need to run a Mini or something with Leopard Server. No shit—Leopard Server. But the cool thing is, you can set that up, with like a 750GB drive, And then have all of your home Macs doing LAN backups to that computer

1:54 - Wilson: Oh, so I don't think you can use a Time Machine backup drive on any computer other than the one it's been assigned to. When you unplug your Time Machine external, nothing happens, but the instant you plug it back in, Time Machine does a backup — in the background. You never see anything, but it silently backs stuff up every time that drive is connected.

1:53 - Wilson: I am just nerd enough to do that, too. Like, you go to these folders that have dates on them, and you click on each one. But I can't figure out the hocus pocus there. Like, how does each folder have a full set of the data?

1:52 - Wilson: Time Machine, Big fan of that. You plug in a virgin external drive and it asks if you want to use it. And then, after the dump, if you don't want to enter the space field and all that. You can actually browse around in file view

1:44 - Wilson: I also like the reflections you see in the dock when you move windows around

11:07 - Jason: Agreed. Good first hour with stuff we enjoy, but we'll dig in deep for the review.

11:07 - Jesus: But first hour has felt good.

11:06 - Jesus: And probably give Spaces a harder try. When I finish Zelda.

11:06 - Jesus: There's stuff that I like very much, like Quick Look or Time Machine. Obviously I need more time to get into all the details.

11:05 - Jason: Yeah, I agree. It's good and has decent upgrades and small, but important (once you use them) features—but it's not mindblowingly better than Tiger. You won't be losing out on anything if you don't upgrade right away.

11:04 - Jesus: Well, time is up. Bottom line after one hour: feels good, but not frikkin' amazing.

11:03 - Jason: That's an hour. So what's our verdict?

11:01 - Jason: The new Airport Menu also looks nice and it's slightly easier to use (it could be just my feeling).


11:00 - Jason: lep7.png

10:59 - Jason: Oh, and the feature in Mail where if someone says "Tuesday" or "10/31" that lets you mouse over and create a new iCal event for that? AWESOME.

10:58 - Jesus: Preview's new image manipulation panel is nice. Will save me opening Photoshop more than once. Fast too.

10:57 - Jason: Yup, Wikipedia's there in the Dictionary App.


10:56 - Jesus: It seems very niche, but I like these details.

10:55 - Jesus: Definitely a winner. I'm going to use this with my LEGO Millennium Falcon stop motion, instead of using the camera's card.

10:55 - Jesus: I tried the improved Image Capture tethered camera support.

Wilson: Also, Pogue was uppity about Stacks. I looked into it and I get what he was upset about. If you have a ton of stuff in a folder, it will cap out at a certain point, But when it's set for "auto" it will fan it out until it reaches a critical size then go to a grid view

10:54 - Jason: lep5.png

10:53 - Jason: Stacks are pretty neat as long as the folder you're looking at doesn't have a billion files in it. Gives you a quick way to get in and out.

10:52 - Jesus: And it will definitely help newbies. Much cleaner.

10:51 - Jesus: The Finder looking like iTunes is definitely better than before. And the network access feels faster too. Less stalls.

10:51 - Jason: I actually liked spaces alright from the betas, but yeah, that workplace switching is annoying.

10:50 - Jesus: I just can't stand how it drives me automatically to other workplaces.

10:50 - Jesus: Spaces definitely is annoying me. I'm turning it off.

10:49 - Jesus: "Boobs of the day" dashboard widget, here we come.

10:48 - Jesus: That works beautifully too. Just like Jobs boomenized in the keynote.

10:48 - Jason: Yep, looks great. I now have a widget comparing my gamerscore to someone else's.


10:47 - Jason: Making a widget from a page in Safari now.

10:45 - Jesus: OK, trashing "Pending bills" again now.

10:44 - Jesus: Yep. It works. All is there, like magic. I love this.

10:43 - Jason: Dashboard looks the same as before.

10:42 - Jesus: I'm going to start trashing some files around.

10:41 - Jesus: I set the backup volume to an external drive. I wonder what would you do with laptops. It could be cool to have an HD and perhaps an SSD in a future MacBook, using the HD for backup on the road.

10:40 - Jesus: Wow. It's full of stars.

10:40 - Jesus: OK, Time Machine is up and running.

10:39 - Jason: Safari looks the same as it did on Tiger (the Safari 3 that is). Not much change here.

10:38 - Jason: Frontrow looks very much like an AppleTV. (I can't seem to take a screenshot of FrontRow)

10:37 - Jason: Sync's done, nothing new that I saw. Oh, and Notes don't sync to Mail. Darn.

10:36 - Jason: Oooh, it lets you choose to sync to either Entourage or Address Book instead of first to Address Book then Entourage.

10:36 - Jason: Here we go, syncing an iPhone.

10:35 - Jason: Sorry, I'm back. Running iChat Video seems to crash my Airport Extreme (Gigabit) router though. Not sure what happened there. Knocked my other computers offline too. Had to reset the router to get back on.

10:32 - Jason: Oh yeah, even with an old system it still feels faster than it did on Tiger.

Wilson: Pogue and Mossy bitched about the transparent menus, but from what I've seen, the subtle transparency looks pretty good.

10:31 - Jason: No problems with menu dropdown transparency here.


10:30 - Jesus: FINE! BE THAT WAY! It's nice to see that the machine seems to keep the speed after you install a new OS, however.

10:29 - Jason: I'm running this on a 2.33 MacBook Pro w/ 2GB RAM btw. Eat it Jesus.

10:29 - Jesus: To the guy who asks if it's worthy to install in a iBook G4: I don't know how it will behave in the iBook, but my PowerBook G4 1.33GHz it feels fast.

10:28 - Jason: lep2.png

10:27 - Jason: I'm loving the new iCal. There's more information on the screen at once, there's a month in the corner, and everything is tighter.

10:26 - Jesus: The whole changing to a different work space just makes me dizzy. But then, Zelda in the DS makes me dizzy.

10:25 - Jesus: Maybe it's just me, but my brain is still expecting a document to open in place.

10:25 - Jesus: I'm starting to find Spaces annoying.

10:24 - Jason: Leopard mail is super fast.

10:24 - Jesus: Before I had to open them, now I can click and boom!

10:24 - Jesus: Definitely a winner. I went to my Giz's illustrations folder and there are a lot of base files and versions with similar names.

Wilson: I like how the new icons show more a preview of Word docs and PDFs and all that. Multiple page PDFs have that binder edge, and have this turned down page, so you can see a glimpse of page 2. It's like, even before you get to Cover Flow and Quick Look, you have some new, better ways to find your stuff.

Wilson: Quick Look is awesome, But doing Quick Look out of Cover Flow is even awesomer. And you know what's even still more deluxely awesomer than that? The Quick Look is great though. Doing Quick Look out of Cover Flow when the folder you are browsing is like on a Vista PC on your local network. That is super deluxe, son.

10:23 - Jesus: The QuickView is going to come useful for me, however.

10:22 - Jason: Idle CPU usage seems to be slightly higher for some reason. Activity Monitor says it's WindowServer and Dock using 13% and 12%, along with mds with 30%. mds is spotlight, so it looks like it's indexing everything. If this is anything like the beta, it's going to take a few hours to finish.

10:21 - Jason: Damn, my Tri-pane widescreen plugin (Letterbox) for Mail doesn't work anymore. It worked in Beta.

Wilson: But Mail has data detection. You can mouse over like an address or a phone number and it just IDs it as data it can use, and it stores it in the right place. Even weirder, creepier, is the fact that it can read your invitations to parties and figure out what day it's on and what time and where, and add it to your iCal. So when the machines take over, they will be scary stalkers. I am not sure we should have bestowed them with this technology. Steve Jobs head atop a robot body, commanding a legion of OS XXV robots

Wilson: Data detector in Mail is pretty cool. But, like, do I care about stationery? Seriously, do I? No. That's the answer I hope you rushed to.

10:20 - Jason: Mail Import's finally done.

10:18 - Jason: I agree, Jesus. It's fine when you're looking at album art, but how often do you look at your files just to look at your files? Except images.

Wilson: Cover Flow isn't my favourite thing in iTunes, but I can see how it would be better here. I mean, think of folders of photos or something - I really think I will use it to scan through stuff like that.

10:18 - Jesus: Coverflow on the Finder seems to me more like a gimmick, however. It's cool, works well but it's not always useful. It's great in iTunes because you are just browsing and then you say "oh, I feel like this." But for the Finder, it's not useful.

10:17 - Jason: @Jawzxy It's opaque.

10:16 - Jesus: Movie preview chokes on some formats though. This is a clean install, by the way.


10:15 - Jesus: For small amounts of pictures scrolling is quick, but if I try to scroll fast too fast you have to let the machine catch up to grab the thumbnail previews.

10:14 - Jason: Halfway done updating mail!

10:12 - Jason: The 2D dock on the sides are a nice touch, a nice change from the 3D effect dock (that didn't quite make sense) in the betas.

Wilson: I also like the reflections you see in the dock when you move windows around

10:10 - Jesus: Activating Coverflow takes some time for me. It's not instantaneous on my machine (PowerBook G4 with 2GB of RAM)

10:09 - Jason: It definitely feels speedier (like the betas) than Tiger, yeah. Even on an old install.

10:08 - Jesus: OK, opening a big porn image folder now.

10:08 - Jesus: Feels zippier to me than Tiger. Definitely faster than the betas.

10:04 - Jason: The new OS X theme seems nice. The transparency for the menubar is gone, but still reflects a little of what wallpaper you choose.

10:04 - Jason: Importing my 63272 messages from old mail to new mail says it's going to take an hour! At least!

10:03 - Jason: Opening movie is very fun. Doo doo, doo doo doo.

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