OS X Snow Leopard 10A411 Brings a Few Minor Changes

Yesterday’s release of OS X Snow Leopard Build 10A411 to developers has sent those with access to the new version searching for changes since the last update. Given that the previous seed had occurred only five days earlier, the changes found so far in the latest build are unsurprisingly minor for the most part. Here are a few of the changes observed so far:

QuickTime X Interface: QuickTime X has been updated from version 10.0 (42) to 10.0 (47) and adds a new “glossy black” look to the navigation interface.

Dock Contextual Menu Font: The font used for Dock contextual menus appears to have reverted to the “Leopard-style” larger non-bold text


10A411 on left, 10A402 on right.

Trashing Files from Stacks: Trashing files from Stacks in Grid view now properly deletes the selected files.

Dock Exposé Across Spaces: Dock Exposé reportedly now displays windows from all Spaces upon activation.

New Safari Build: Safari has been updated to version 4.0.3 (6531.4). There is no word on any visible changes since the previous build.

Apple Tweaks visuals in Snow Leopard

Apple on Thursday evening delivered to developers a new build of its forthcoming Snow Leopard operating system that addresses a number of outstanding bugs but also delivers a couple of interface tweaks.

“This Snow Leopard Developer Preview Update is recommended for all users running the Snow Leopard Developer Preview Build 10A394 or later,” Apple said. “This update includes general operating system fixes for stability, compatibility, and security.”

The new build, labeled 10A402a, weighs in at roughly 1.3GB and was distributed via Snow Leopard’s Software Update mechanism. It’s the second such build to arrive in that manner in as many weeks, signaling ongoing tests to the new version of the system’s automatic software updater.

In their brief experiences testing the new build, people familiar with the software claim it to be more responsive overall, as Apple focuses on optimization and stability ahead of a release planned for this fall.

Additionally, developers have noticed a couple of obvious interface tweaks, the first of which has seen the Dock’s contextual pop-up menus re-skinned in a charcoal motif with white text. In previous builds, these menus were know to sport the same interface as traditional Finder contextual menus, which include black text on a platinum backdrop.Snow Leopard

Apple may also be fiddling with the design of other Mac OS X interface elements, such as slide knobs, which now appear to feature a deeper, more vibrant shade of blue.

Snow Leopard

Wow, Some changes there eh. Lets see what we get in the next build.

Apple’s ‘active packaging’ tries to reinvent the box

apple_patent_box

Electronics packaging has been growing steadily smaller and less annoying over recent times, but here comes Apple adding complexity where we didn’t know it was needed. The bright sparks at Cupertino envision powered, data-transmitting boxes that will ensure the device within is fully juiced, packing the latest firmware, and capable of pumping out video demos so that the packaging needn’t get in the way of wooing customers. Sure, up-to-date firmware and a full battery sound nice, but we can’t help but wonder about the price premium we’d have to swallow to be able to see our new toy dancing before we’ve even set it free from its box.

[Via Phone Arena]

Psystar to emerge from Chapter 11 with new Mac offering

Battered, bankrupt, and thought to be wobbling on its last leg, Psystar this week proved that it can still turn heads when it announced that it will soon emerge from Chapter 11 bearing its fastest Mac system yet.

In an email to its customers, fans, and intrigued journalists, the unauthorized Mac clone maker introduced the Open(7), which will reportedly marry Mac OS X with Intel’s Nehalem Xeon chips to yield the company’s “fastest and most quiet computing configuration” yet.

TheDoral, Fla.-based solutions provider also used the same email to inform those following its legal proceedings with Apple that its decision to file for Chapter 11 in May was “critical” to maintaining its daily operations, but that the company now sees itself “ready to emerge” from bankruptcy and “again battle Goliath.”
Continue reading “Psystar to emerge from Chapter 11 with new Mac offering”

We get it, Windows means cheap hardware

Microsoft’s latest advertising campaign, while more stimulating than the Seinfeld/Gates spots, has one goal and one goal only: sell PCs. Microsoft’s endgame, it seems, is to persuade people into purchasing Windows-running PCs by leveraging the fact that Macs are more expensive than PCs. Continue reading “We get it, Windows means cheap hardware”

Xbox 360 + iPod = Bmw iDrive 4.0

The much-criticized BMW iDrive central control dashboard has been updated to its fourth version, and it seems that this time they have got it right. Abandoning the previous compass-based user interface, the new iDrive adopts the hierarchical vertical menu system of the iPod, mixing it with an interface similar to the Xbox 360. Apart from the faster navigation this provides, they have also included new features to make it faster and more useful. Continue reading “Xbox 360 + iPod = Bmw iDrive 4.0”

Your Camera Doesn’t Matter

http://www.foundphotography.com/PhotoThoughts/archives/Canon_AE1.jpg

A while ago, my Dad bought a Camera, a Canon 40D, it is a great camera, but what does it all put through.

I happened on this article a while back and its message has always stuck with me (although I still obsess over new camera gear). But even a self-confessed gear addict can admit there are some pretty interesting points in there. The article by Ken Rockwell details his theory that you can achieve the results you want with a $150 camera or a $5000 camera, it’s just about understanding and working with the equipment. I don’t agree with everything he has to say, but it’s a good read for anyone lusting after some of the new, and ridiculously expensive, DSLRs popping up. And if you need proof of Rockwell’s claim that “a great photographer can take great pictures with a disposable”, look no further than Flickr where a simple search will yield some really amazing shots, all taken with disposables. A couple of my favorites are here and here. Also worth a read is Rockwell’s “$150 Camera vs. $5000 Camera” article.

I guess at the end of the day you’re really just paying for features when you buy a high end camera body. Easy access to settings, quicker focus, faster shots: it all adds up to an easier to use camera that allows you to get the shots when they present themselves. I remember my dads old Canon DSLR Camera, it took great photos, but it was a total pain to use and I can’t even count the number of great shots I missed waiting for that thing to focus or write to the memory card (it took forever to do both).