in Apple, Life

From Lame to Lion

Don’t remember what OS X used to look like back when dinosaurs used to roam the planet and Apple’s OS ran only on PowerPC processors? We’ve mined more than a decade of our own OS X reviews—studiously authored by John Siracusa—for screenshots and other OS X-related memories that trace the development of Apple’s desktop OS through the 2000s.

I started into the Mac as Apple made the transition to OS X. I wasn’t a Mac user at all – mocked them if anything – but OS X changed it for me. I didn’t actually pick up a Mac until we bought an eMac / (photo) in 2003 which likely shipped with Jaguar v10.2.

Jump in the time machine and take a look back at how far OS X has come.

  1. For me, 10.3 was the first usable version of OSX. I started with 10.1 but couldn’t get hooked on it. At that time I far preferred XP to 10.1 and 10.2 for speed and ease of use. So I slummed it on some no name grey laptop with a white apple sticker placed strategically on the cover. 10.3 was released when I bought an eMac (probably from you, Chris) and used it to do more than just video editing. It was so smooth and it looked so great. When 10.4 was released I never looked back. Spotlight was the clincher. There was no question for me we were going all Mac at home and I was thankful when we did the same at my work.

    And there is no question that when a new version is released, I will upgrade. After waiting a few days to see if there’s any early adopter problems, of course!

    What was your first daily usable version of OSX? And your favourite version jump?

  2. I don’t remember which one I thought of as usable. I just remember iMovie blowing my mind so whenever that first started shipping?

    The most recent versions (Lion, MoLo) have been exciting as they figure out how to navigate a touch influenced world while hanging on to an old style interface.

    It’s got to be tempting to throw a whole bunch of touch/iOS style stuff back in the Mac but having the restraint to do it where appropriate will determine how successful OS X remains to be.

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