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One hour fifty six minutes: Steve Jobs' WWDC keynote yesterday did not mention 'OS X' or 'Mac' a single time. Not once.* So much for Apple's commitment to their computer and computer OS line.

Yesterday it was all about the mobile devices. Primarily the new iPhone 4. And the iPhone OS now being called 'iOS' - the old 'iPhone OS' formerly called 'OS X' way back when 'Apple' was still 'Apple Computer'.

Steve Jobs doesn't even recall marketing computers. Macintosh? What's that?

Things change over time. IBM invented the personal computer market and left it completely behind. But of course IBM are IBM. Others would say Apple are Apple. But IBM PCs mostly ran Windows; Apple's don't; but a PC market without Apple is a PC market with only Microsoft.

Of course the war for the desktop is already over, says Steve Jobs. Which sort of confuses a lot of people really intent on not running Windows. But maybe his latest greatest gadgets are what he sees as replacing the 'Mac'.

iOS is an optimised version of OS X; the iPhone and the iPad are increasingly powerful and fulfill more of Steve's fundamental design requirements - hermetically sealed, impervious to tinkering, a completely controlled environment even when it comes to third party software, and so forth.

Better than the iPod. Get down on your hands and knees to get your lithium ion battery replaced.

Developers can go on using 'real' computers to create software for iOS; they're doing it now. Some will however tire of this and switch over to washing machine development instead. No tinkering on the target systems. No root either.

It's interesting to trace back where everything changed. Jon Rubinstein and Avie Tevanian left Apple on 31 March 2006 - demonstratively one day before the company's 30 year anniversary and at a time when the development of the iPhone was already well underway. Scott Forstall had already assembled his iPhone team - from the OS X developers to start with.

Former NeXT programmer Forstall wanted OS X developers who liked challenges. He took the best Apple had - off their OS X projects and into the secret iPhone project - one of the most significant corporate-wide projects run anywhere ever. But there definitely was a downside: those who according to Forstall have a 'deterministic' view of themselves - those who are resigned to being what they already are - were left to take care of the stagnating OS X.

And how one's view of things like 'open' and 'freedom' can change over the years as well. Especially when one is exposed to RDF radiation all the time. When asked (back in 2007) how he could consider the iPhone platform 'free', Forstall cited only the great number of third party apps available. As if they in themselves made the platform open. And he went on to explain that a 'closed root-level API' was a good thing for protecting users and networks from viruses.

Try telling that to Google.

Name: Ted
Email: aa@bb.com
Message: Error! In your reporting... Steve talks about Macs at the beginning of the 2010 Keynote, so your recent article is poorly researched.


Please fix it at once or your credibility will forever be in question.


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