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Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Apple's annual WWDC (World-Wide Developer Conference) plays to an audience without whom Apple's business simply would not exist: third-party developers who create all the "apps" and games that people buy and use on their Apple devices and Apple operating systems. (Hardware developers were also important in the past but have been increasingly marginalized by Apple's strategy of vertical integration and "ecosystem" ownership/control.)

This year, we again look to an Apple show, on June 3, 2019 at 10:00 a.m. PDT, to learn how Apple will prioritize and promote its technologies and products to both developers and customers. This is a very important checkpoint for the Mac, mobile and media platforms and future technologies (e.g. VR, AI, "services", etc.)

We will track and analyze the changes together here on MacInTouch - a few starting points:
 




macOS 10.12 killed:
  • PPTP VPN
  • (USB) Modem faxing
macOS 10.14 killed:
  • Cover Flow view in the Finder
  • Proxy Automatic Configuration (PAC) via FTP or File URL schemes
  • Legacy NPAPI browser plug-ins except for Adobe Flash
  • Unapproved legacy Safari Extensions
  • Non-system scripting additions
Besides what you have already listed, the future Apple will also kill off:
  • OpenGL (Open Graphics Library)
  • OpenCL (Open Computing Language)
  • AFP (Apple File Protocol)
 



iTunes has become a monstrous, steaming dinosaur. I'll be glad to see the back of it, but I fear what might replace it. Maybe it will be an Apple Music app, so you can only listen to Apple's suscription service, doing away with all those pesky music files on your machine.
I will be curious to see if there will continue to be an iTunes for Windows in any form, even if it is a whole new app.
 



Ric Ford

MacInTouch
As I listened to the WWDC show live stream's last section about the 2019 Mac Pro, I was amazed at how big and powerful the design turned out to be, and I thought that it would probably end up around $15,000, so it was surprising to then hear a quoted starting price of $6000, but that doesn't include the optional wheels, nor any more than a scant 256GB of storage or other options that will boost the bottom line. I didn't see any other price information, e.g. for the Afterburner card, MPX modules, memory/storage upgrades, etc., but keyboard and mouse are apparently bundled.

The 2019 Mac Pro is about 40 pounds (presumably without any accessories) in a case that's a bit less than 22 x 18 x 9 inches - pretty similar in size to the original Mac Pro.
 


I don't usually like dwelling on stuff like this, but one of the most bizarre things to me about today's keynote was how the male presenters seemed to all wear the same black clothing with white-soled sneakers. Is there some kind of meme/message I'm missing here?
Coincidentally, I watched some old James Bond movies yesterday and noticed that the in-the-ranks Bad Guys wore simple uniforms, even when they were doing things that one would suppose might require a disguise, like robbing Fort Knox. Maybe Apple's trying to signal something similar.
 


I don't usually like dwelling on stuff like this, but one of the most bizarre things to me about today's keynote was how the male presenters seemed to all wear the same black clothing with white-soled sneakers. Is there some kind of meme/message I'm missing here?
Maybe it's a religious thing, priestly vestments.
 


I am one who is unlikely to go to MacOS Catalina, due to all hell breaking loose when 32-bit apps don't work. There are lots of those, including previous versions of H&R Block, if you have to go back and file an amended return. So, for those of us who sync iPhone and iPad using iTunes on the computer, will that continue to work?
 


So, for those of us who sync iPhone and iPad using iTunes on the computer, will that continue to work?
As far as I can tell, if you update to Catalina, you won't be able to use iTunes at all, as it is replaced with the Apple TV, Music, and Podcast apps. However, you'll be able to sync an iPhone or iPad to your Mac directly through the Finder. When you attach an iDevice to the Mac, it will now appear in the "Locations" group in Finder windows. Clicking on it will yield a familiar sync interface.

Here's a short video of what it looks like:
 


As far as I can tell, if you update to Catalina, you won't be able to use iTunes at all, as it is replaced with the Apple TV, Music, and Podcast apps. However, you'll be able to sync an iPhone or iPad to your Mac directly through the Finder. When you attach an iDevice to the Mac, it will now appear in the "Locations" group in Finder windows. Clicking on it will yield a familiar sync interface. Here's a short video of what it looks like:
I said I was not updating but sticking with Mojave. My question was about iTunes sync and everything else continuing to work.
 


I said I was not updating but sticking with Mojave. My question was about iTunes sync and everything else continuing to work.
Actually, you said that you were "unlikely to go to Catalina," which suggests that you hadn't ruled out updating. Therefore, I thought you might find it helpful to know what would happen to iTunes and how iDevice syncing would work if you did decide to make the jump.

If you stay on an older version of macOS and iTunes, it's hard to say if or when it might stop working with iDevices, but it's likely that eventually there would be a version of iOS that won't work with iTunes.
 


If iTunes is broken up into Apple TV, Music and Podcast apps, where do audiobooks go? Most of them are broken down into many files, which have to be sequenced correctly, and that sometimes has befuddled iTunes. Mostly, I listen to audiobooks on an iPod in my car, and I've got a bad feeling about where this could be going.
 


I said I was not updating but sticking with Mojave. My question was about iTunes sync and everything else continuing to work.
Yes, it will continue to work. The iTunes "Store" isn't going away. iTunes on older Macs is not going away. iTunes on Windows is not going away. The ability to play local MP3/AAC/ALAC files is not going away (in macOS 10.15).

iTunes may no longer get updated, and at some point in the future, those things above may well go away, when the version of iOS on your iOS device requires you not to use iTunes, but that will be some way off in the future - it will not be in iOS 13. I don't know for sure, but it will be at least several versions of iOS away in my opinion - i.e. several years. Apple are not going to cut off hundreds of millions of users overnight. This will be a gradual process - force people onto newer and newer iOS/macOS/hardware and then kill the old technology. Splitting iTunes (the application) on macOS 10.15 is just the start of this process….
 


I'm currently putting together the latest Frequently Asked Questions and articles over on MacStrategy, but here are a few choice notes from the newly announced stuff that I have found:
  • macOS 10.15 Mac hardware support is the same as Mojave except that the original Mac Pro cheesegrater models are not supported! Spent lots of money on a Metal 2 compatible video card? Tough, now you need to spend $6000+ on a new Mac Pro to run macOS 10.15!
  • macOS 10.15 Activation Lock requires the Mac to have a T2 chip.
  • macOS doesn't have a capitalised M but iPadOS has a capitalised P (what's that about?).
  • iOS 13 - Safari history and open tabs that have synced with iCloud are now protected with end‑to‑end encryption.
  • iOS 13 - Files app external drive support: USB drive, SD card, or hard drive (yay!)
  • iOS 13 - Files app: zip and unzip facility
  • USB syncing has to be done in the three different apps - looks like no single sync facility via USB! (Grrrr!)
  • "Sign-in with Apple" requires the Apple ID account to have 2FA activated (although the pages originally stating this last night have now changed).
  • Voice Control is, initially, US English only - this looked like a really amazing feature. I hope they bring this to other languages as quickly as possible.
  • The Sidecar feature is only supported with a very few, limited, set of apps (at this point).
macOS 10.15 apparently has a dedicated system volume. macOS Catalina runs in a dedicated, read-only system volume, which means it is completely separate from all other data, and nothing can overwrite your critical operating system files.

macOS 10.15 also has a restore from snapshot feature. If your third-party software is incompatible with an update you just installed, use macOS Recovery to restore from a snapshot of your computer taken right before the installation. macOS and all your apps will work just as they did before you installed the update.
 


I don't usually like dwelling on stuff like this, but one of the most bizarre things to me about today's keynote was how the male presenters seemed to all wear the same black clothing with white-soled sneakers. Is there some kind of meme/message I'm missing here?
Heaven's Gate wannabes?!
 


...here are a few choice notes from the newly announced stuff that I have found:
  • macOS doesn't have a capitalised M but iPadOS has a capitalised P (what's that about?).
macOS 10.15 apparently has a dedicated system volume. macOS Catalina runs in a dedicated, read-only system volume, which means it is completely separate from all other data, and nothing can overwrite your critical operating system files.
Dedicated system volume sounds like an outstanding idea! Not only could it prevent third-party software (and malware) from messing with critical system files, but it (might) also prevent Apple system updates from messing with/vacuuming user data (through the single-tunnel Thunderbolt power-and-data cables). Possibly, however, also cause havoc with important third-party software that users choose to install to modify their systems (password software, Default Folder, MenuBar modifiers, etc.) and possibly with backup software (CCC, Retrospect, SuperDuper).

As a lifelong writer, I agree about the iPadOS and macOS capitalization point.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
Something else that bothered me about Apple's WWDC show yesterday: It seemed aimed more at consumers than developers. Then this struck me: Phil Schiller's absence from the stage. I had the impression that he was the main man for developers and the Apple executive who best understood them. Double-checking Apple's "Leadership" page, though, there is no executive assigned to developer relations. Does that job now default to Craig Federighi?

(Jony Ive was also absent from the show stage, but his fans can get a good dose of him from this video.)
 


It would be more accurate to say that, rather than ending, iTunes will be reverting to what it originally was before being overloaded with other functions — an app for loading, purchasing, storing, organizing and playing digital music. Over time iTunes has come to incorporate TV, movies, podcasts, audiobooks and even backup and admin of iPhones and iPads.

As those other things have been bolted on, the iTunes app has become bloated and unwieldy, losing much of its sense of coherency. For years now there's been a call for it to be broken up into manageable portions.

So iTunes is getting back to basics, and changing its name to Music in recognition. Its more recent other functions are being outboarded to dedicated apps.

... As for audiobooks, under iOS these live in the Books app, which seems logical to me. Perhaps that'll be the case in macOS too?
 



Ric Ford

MacInTouch
My guess is this will work with the same constraints as booting from an "external" drive has on current T2 machines. But I'm also not too sure how important it is for the users this machine is aimed at. I think most use cases for a machine like this require some nominal amount of storage to hold the OS and related software, and then a great big place to put 'data' - video or scientific computation data or whatever. Depending on the use case and environment, that great big place could either be local, using something like the Promise arrays, or on a networked storage system or some sort. Either approach is nicely accommodated by this machine. I think they've anticipated both without bias towards one or the other, which I like. In fact, I think this is the explanation for why the base internal SSD is so small. If it's just my system drive, and all my data is elsewhere, I only need 256 GB, so why pay (Apple prices) for more? I think a surprising number of these things will be sold and used with the base SSD, counterintuitive as it may be for a high-end machine.
Those are good points, and the counter-argument may be changing with macOS 10.15: that macOS is designed around the idea of a single "Macintosh HD" volume for macOS, apps and user data files. Changing this configuration has been possible but neither easy nor encouraged by Apple (for example, both Apple and third-parties dump things into the user's Downloads folder, Apple media folders, etc., etc.). SuperDuper offers tricks for splitting the macOS away from apps and data files, but I've never found it to be very intuitive or easy to manage such "sandbox" arrangements amidst all Apple's default configurations and hooks into the user's home directory.
 


I suspect that, since it is the new OS for the iPad, the capitalization is intentional (I've never seen "ipad" in Apple propaganda).
And, for 30+ years, the Mac was always "Mac" with a capital M. So why, just two years ago, did Apple change it to "macOS" (no space, no capital M)? If the product name is that important, then it should have been "MacOS" and never "macOS"… (Oh, and it's capitilisation ;-)
 


I'm currently putting together the latest Frequently Asked Questions and articles over on MacStrategy, but here are a few choice notes from the newly announced stuff that I have found:
  • macOS 10.15 Mac hardware support is the same as Mojave except that the original Mac Pro cheesegrater models are not supported! Spent lots of money on a Metal 2 compatible video card? Tough, now you need to spend $6000+ on a new Mac Pro to run macOS 10.15!
Guess I can stop reading here. ;-)
(I purchased/installed a Metal-capable video card for my Mac Pro 5,1, but I'm still running Sierra.)
 


... As for audiobooks, under iOS these live in the Books app, which seems logical to me. Perhaps that'll be the case in macOS too?
High Sierra has an iBooks application for reading ebooks, but it has no sign of audio capability, unless perhaps you can set it to read the text aloud. Audiobooks are a growing market, and I would be surprised if Apple missed them entirely. Then again, Apple sometimes does miss such things.
 


I don't usually like dwelling on stuff like this, but one of the most bizarre things to me about today's keynote was how the male presenters seemed to all wear the same black clothing with white-soled sneakers. Is there some kind of meme/message I'm missing here?
if I recall correctly only three people wore black, all the others wore colored clothing. The people wearing black were company leadership and their message was more important than who was telling it. The other cases were about the message but also about highlighting the people doing the telling.

You see the same at concerts. The crew usually wear all black so as not to draw the eye from the performing members when they have to fix something on stage. They fade into the background, all you notice is the band and the music. Same with Cook, Federighi and the other guy: all attention went to what they were showing.
 


Ric Ford

MacInTouch
if I recall correctly only three people wore black, all the others wore colored clothing. The people wearing black were company leadership and their message was more important than who was telling it.
As I mentioned, I don't want to get hung up on this topic, and I missed the subtle distinction that Craig Federighi had a slightly off-black shirt and black shoes without blaring white soles, but there were at least five other males in "the uniform" during the show.

Oh, I see... I guess this is part of the picture: Tim Cook: Nike Roshe Two Flyknit

 


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