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GUI OS X Operating Systems Upgrades

Mac OS X Yosemite Beta Opens 165

New submitter David Hames (3763525) writes Would you like to test drive the newest release of the Macintosh operating system? Apple is opening up the beta for Mac OS X Yosemite starting Thursday to the first million people who sign up. Beta users won't be able to access such promised Yosemite features such as the ability to make or receive your iPhone calls or text messages on your Mac, turn on your iPhone hotspot feature from your Mac, or "Handoff" the last thing you were doing on your iOS 8 device to your Mac and vice versa. A new iCloud Drive feature is also off-limits, while any Spotlight search suggestions are U.S.-based only. Don't expect all your Mac apps to run either. Ars has a preview of Yosemite.
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Mac OS X Yosemite Beta Opens

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  • ...except that my "redemption code" which pops me over to the App Store says "This code has already been redeemed". Did we break their site already?

    • Apparently yes. They went offline already with a "we are updating the site" message.
    • ...and got a gigantically unhelpful email from someone who obviously didn't bother to pay attention to my support ticket. It helpfully informed me that 1) the code was already redeemed, 2) they couldn't tell me who did that due to privacy, and 3) told me to have a nice day.

      I miss the days when Steve would come in and yell at people, relentlessly, for not doing their [ redacted ]-ing jobs, at all.

      • by dgatwood ( 11270 )

        I got the same error after a glitch. Turns out the redemption was successful the first time, but because the server was too slow responding to the redemption request, the App Store app timed out. For whatever bizarre reason, it appears that the app store server infrastructure doesn't treat redemption requests as idempotent (clearly a bug), so subsequent attempts to redeem the same code from the same account fail. Ideally, those subsequent attempts should do nothing, but should return whatever magic valu

  • by Anonymous Coward

    The first two pages or the Ars thing are all fonts and flattened icons and such, while the last page is "Apple has done no harm to the Finder in Yosemite, but it hasn't fixed any of its problems either." and "Functionally, the Dock doesn't change much."
    I'm glad to see Apple is spending its time focused on important things, like pushing its also-ran version of Windows UI aesthetics.

    • ...and if they were good enough for my Dad, they're good enough for me.

      It's always "change for the sake of upgrades" with these guys. Microsoft went from flat icons, to 3D icons tilted one way, to 3D icons tilted the other way, and now back to... flat, yes, I'm glad we're continuing to improve by revolving around in circles. Possibly they got the idea from the "busy" cursor.

      Prepare to buy new copies of all your software because they have old-fashioned icons but, not sufficiently old-fashioned icons.

    • by azav ( 469988 )
      Pisses me the fuck off too. Xcode 6 with its BLUE BLUE BLUE ELECTRIC BLUE highlights actually angers me.
  • Flat UI Design (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TitusC3v5 ( 608284 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @01:06PM (#47523497) Homepage
    Am I the only person who hates the flat UI style that Microsoft, Google, and Apple have all adopted? I hated it being shoved onto my iPhone, and now it looks like the same nonsense it coming to OSX.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It's hideous; a plague pushed by "designers" who have run out of new ideas. You're not alone.

      • by DarkOx ( 621550 )

        Gotta join in on this here.

        On the one hand it all evokes fond memories of CDE on the other hand CDE is open source now if what I wanted was CDE I could have it. I expect something better than this.

      • by azav ( 469988 )
        I agree 10,000 percent. Someone needs to fire Ive or whomever is pushing this bullshit.
    • Re:Flat UI Design (Score:5, Insightful)

      by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @01:19PM (#47523577)
      Nope. While I agree that skeumorphism may have gone too far in previous designs, the shift to flat UI takes away from functionality sometimes. I want to clearly tell if something is touchable/clickable as opposed to nonfunctional text/graphics. All I can say is that it's not quite as bad as Metro/Modern. But that's not saying much.
      • There are ways to express the clickability of a region without 3Ds, it's just Apple's approach (on iOS) at the moment is somewhat lackluster. Mac OS X NSButtons still have a eency bit of bezel.

        • And the buttons will change as you mouse over them so you can see what's going on. Windows 8 was much less obvious about what could be clicked on many times.

      • by dnebin ( 594347 )

        I'm mixed. I prefer the glassy look of old, but at the same time I realize it takes more cpu to render it.

        Well, I guess I'd rather have that little bit of cpu doing work for me rather than generating a pretty glassy look, I guess I'm in favor of it.

        • Less CPU is a bonus for underpowered systems like mobile phones. I see it as less priority for a desktop/laptop. It may be part of a longer strategy to use more ARM processors in the future.
        • by azav ( 469988 )
          No, it doesn't. The glassy look is all prerendered into bitmaps that are stored as PNG files.
          • Not necessarily. It's often rendered as an NSGradient having the necessary colours at key positions. A glassy effect typically needs four colours, and they are computed off some base "theme" colour. Nevertheless the time to render this is extremely small, probably no greater than decoding and painting a PNG of the same area.
      • by azav ( 469988 )
        I KNOW!

        You CAN'T TELL if a UI element is a clickable element element if #1, it looks just the same as everything else, #2, isn't displayed on the screen until you mouseover it!

        Xcode actually REMOVED the damn disclosure arrows from hierarchical controls so that you had NO IDEA that you could click on them until you tried it.

        OMF! Infuriating. Someone thought that was a good idea? Why do they still have jobs?!

        What's even worse is that in some areas, the clickable items are INVISIBLE until you mouse
      • What is soo bad that it makes people afraid of change, give headaches, cause confusion, or just makes uses apathetic to upgrade to shiny gradients, colors, shadows, animations etc?

        Well I tell you one thing? I HATE BLINDING WHITE ALL CAPS office 2013. I HATE FULL SCREEN. I hate less functionality. I hate no buttons (Apple is removing all buttons in iOS 8 because it ... gulps does not have real ones). Is there anyone who hates the leather bound address book as much as we all hate Metro and flat 72 pixel font

    • I hate it too. It seems that almost no operating system has a cool-looking user interface right now. Of the available options, Ubuntu's Unity and Windows 7 look the best. Maybe GNOME3 comes after those.
      • by Cinder6 ( 894572 )

        I really wouldn't call Yosemite flat, even though a lot of tech sites claim it is. It has a lot more visual eye candy than Mavericks, IMO, what with all the transparency and other stuff. I think it looks pretty nice.

        • by azav ( 469988 )
          Overly luminous colors that look like an art student's bad project? Yes. It has those.
      • I really disliked W7. It was nice when the alternative was XP, but it still felt way over done. Too glossy, too much distraction, too much reliance on special effects (that often required video card help to achieve, which should be a warning sign). W7 is the opposite of keeping things simple and functional. W8 went the wrong way by being too simple and removing functionality. Mac OS feels in the middle, not distracting at all but very functional.

    • Everything looks flat on my old CRT monitors!
      • That's wierd. I would have thought it had a slight curve to it. Unless you call a Trinitron an "old" CRT monitor.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by gnupun ( 752725 )
      I bet Jobs would not have approved of the modern (i.e. stripped of all soul, rich textures and curves) design of ios 7. Since it's so crappy (and bright) it's bound to get pushed into all OSes.
      • I bet Jobs would not have approved of the modern (i.e. stripped of all soul, rich textures and curves) design of ios 7. Since it's so crappy (and bright) it's bound to get pushed into all OSes.

        I doubt it. Love him or hate him we all admit when it comes to asthetics and perfectionism he masters them.

        He led the iPhone 1 gumdrop gorgeous icons and buttons which everyone loved and changed the smartphone world overnight. I do not see people the same way over Metro or the newer releases. I mean the competitors lo

    • Re:Flat UI Design (Score:5, Insightful)

      by tipo159 ( 1151047 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @01:35PM (#47523693)

      Clearly you are not the only one. The flat UI seems to be the hot idea among UI designers and I am sure that they are all impressing themselves with their work. But, to me, as a user, it is just a gratuitous change that does not contribute to the UI's usability. And, to my kernel s/w engineer eyes, it, for the most part, doesn't look as good as what it is replacing.

      I wonder how long I will be able to get by with OS X Mavericks.

    • Yes, I hate it.
      I'm ebay-ing right now old Mac OS X Server OS versions.
      Mac OS X after 10.6(.8) is a pain for me to use.
      If 10.3 (or was it 10.4) was not so buggy I would even consider to buy an old PowerPC and run that.
      iOS 7 is such a pain, I did not even repair my broken screen on my iPad. My next tablet is an e-ink Linux/Android, either a Kobo or a Nook.
      Good bye Apple, I was 'trustfull' customer of you the last 30 years and bought hardware worth 50,000 Euro over that time ... but thats it.

      • by azav ( 469988 )
        I have them. Email me at zav - at - mac - dot - com

        I LOVE 10.6.8. I use it on all my home macs.

        In the office, I have to use 10.8.5. It's the least visually sucky of them post Snow Leopard.

        Install an SSD and Max out your RAM and stick with 10.6.8 or leave the platform like I will be doing.

        Sucks that Ive's touch is destroying the Mac and iOS interface. Really sucks, but these new versions are too ugly to use.
    • I haven't tried out Yosemite yet, but I generally like the flat look.

      More specifically, I think things should generally be flat so that texture and dimension stand out. Having textures, depth, and animation in a UI can be a great way to provide visual cues, letting you immediately grasp the differentiation between elements and give you a sense of what the UI can do without explanation. However, the texture, depth, and animation can only provide those cues when it stands out against an otherwise static an

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by jbolden ( 176878 )

      No lots of people dislike it. However it has some major advantages in terms of allowing screens to be more complex with a higher degree of understanding.

      Deference — less competition between UI elements and application elements. What is expected is less noticeable
      Clarity — text is legible at every size, icons are precise and lucid, elements are subtle and appropriate, and a sharpened focus on functionality motivates the design
      Depth — visual layers and realistic motion are used to assist u

      • by azav ( 469988 )

        It's visually appalling crap.

        Deference and Clarity lose all the time over the Visual Context that is gained by clearly defined controls with moderate depth, shadow and lighting.

        And their color scheme of garish and overly luminous colors that clash with each other? Just how is this a good thing? It isn't.
    • by wazzzup ( 172351 )

      While everybody is entitled to their opinions, there is a real benefit to flat user interfaces. When done well, flat user interfaces remove the confusing decorations of skeumorphism (the practice of incorporating the look of an object that was made in another material into a design) so that a user can more easily identify and interact with the content or task at hand.

      As with anything, there are extremes that can be taken too far and with flat user interfaces you have to be aware of removing too much disting

      • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

        by macs4all ( 973270 )

        Transparencies, in my mind, are more closely associated with skeumorphic design than flat design and their use in the Yosemite beta is a step backward.

        Good thing Apple has give you two places to reduce, or completely eliminate, Transparency in Yosemite.

        Read the Ars article for details.

      • Unfortunately the exact opposite is true: While everybody is entitled to their opinions, there is a real benefit to flat user interfaces. When done well, flat user interfaces remove the confusing decorations of skeumorphism (the practice of incorporating a look of an object that was made in another material into a design) so that a user can more easily identify and interact with the content or task at hand
        A 'Notebook' that does not look anymore like a notebook is hard to find on the UI. Amd if you open it u

    • I don't hate the Flat UI style. But for Microsoft and Apple to adopt it is not really their thing.

      Google has always had the flat style, it was their thing.
      With Microsoft and Apple doing it it makes them look like they are a cheap rip off.

      Apple did start to go a little too far in the 3d thing. I think when they made the Dock background 3d perspective.

      Microsoft in Windows 7 had a good balance.

    • by MacTO ( 1161105 )

      Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

    • You're not. Lots of people hate it. There are also lots of us that like it though. Just the way it goes.

    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      I don't like them too. I miss the 3Dish designs. :(

    • I like it myself. I really disliked the overly glossy and special effect heavy style of Windows 7 for instance. Mac isn't "flat" per se, it's just minimalist. No borders for example because they serve no purpose except to waste screen space.

      I have no idea about other apple products as I don't use them, but on my android phone I most definitely don't want all that wasted space from UI garnishes (and there's enough wasted space as it is, I want information not pretty looks).

      Now Windows 8 went too far on th

    • by azav ( 469988 )
      I hate it with the burning passion of a thousand suns. Fuck these designers who have no idea how to make a good UI, but sure know how to destroy one. The last good Mac UI was in Snow Leopard.
  • announced the beta are already signed up even if they didn't get an email. I logged on under the email I requested a code for back right after the developers conference and got the code.
  • But give free updates for iOS?
  • by Snufu ( 1049644 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @01:33PM (#47523679)

    National parks are selling commercial naming rights?

    • Why should a national park, named after something else, have a right to the name after it is named? (Was that a complicated sentence?)

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Merk42 ( 1906718 )
      No; Warner Bros. characters
      The meanest, toughest, rip-roarin-est, Jony Ive-est OS whatever packed a XNU kernel!
    • by SeaFox ( 739806 )

      National parks are selling commercial naming rights?

      National parks aren't corporations, and national parks and operating systems on computers aren't the least bit related so you're not going to have a trademark collision.

      And this is assuming I'm entertaining the notion the national park has any exclusive ownership to the name to start with.

      • by Rakarra ( 112805 )

        National parks aren't corporations, and national parks and operating systems on computers aren't the least bit related so you're not going to have a trademark collision.

        National parks aren't corporations, though a corporation can and do run the services in a national park.

        In the case of Yosemite, its services are supplied by the Delaware North corporation, who also oversee Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon.

      • by hondo77 ( 324058 )

        National parks aren't corporations...

        National parks are people, my friend...

  • by djupedal ( 584558 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @01:48PM (#47523789)
    Important Info: OS X Yosemite Beta Seed

    Today we have released a public beta build of Yosemite for people who are part of the OS X Yosemite Beta Program. This is an open-to-the- public seed of similar pre-release software that you test for us. The build they received is 14A299l which is identical and not any newer than your current build 14A298i. There is no benefit in moving to the public seed build. Participants in the public seed get access to the pre-release software and a lighter version of Feedback Assistant. We suggest that you DO NOT participate in the OS X Yosemite Beta Program. If you participate in both programs, you may experience the following issues:

    * You will have multiple projects listed in your projects list in Feedback Assistant and the AppleSeed portal.

    * Installing the public seed build will prevent you from seeing additional software update OS X builds that are only available to the AppleSeed Program.

    * If you write bugs using the OS X Yosemite bug form while using the public seed build, they may not get screened.

    Please remember your current participation in the Apple Software Customer Seeding Program contains many added benefits:

    * You receive additional information in the form of release notes, emails, and bug correspondence

    * You have access to a discussion board

    * You have access to more detailed bug forms

    * Your bug reports are screened by engineering

    * You will have access to builds not available in OS X Yosemite Beta Program

    We appreciate all that you do for the AppleSeed Program. Your steadfast participation truly makes Apple software a high quality product. If you have additional comments or questions, please post on the discussion board.
  • followed by Marmite, then Vegemite. Then Bovril, Oxo, Herbox, Knorr and Maggi.
  • I can fix any current Mac OS. Just go into the apps folder (flower-shift-a is the shortcut), then into utilities, then run shell application. Enlarge the window to full screen. Bingo, you're in a bash shell where you can talk to a proper unixy command line interface.

    • by praxis ( 19962 )

      I can fix any current Mac OS. Just go into the apps folder (flower-shift-a is the shortcut), then into utilities, then run shell application. Enlarge the window to full screen. Bingo, you're in a bash shell where you can talk to a proper unixy command line interface.

      Or command-space then type "terminal" and hit enter for faster bash access.

    • If you just want a UNIX shell, why are you running all that graphical crap at all? Real men want a text mode UNIX. Here, let me help you...

      From the login window, in the user name field, type:


      and hit enter.

      Now, and the window server go away, and you're in a real UNIX shell. And get off my lawn.

  • Apple seems to have removed the ability to customize the chat bubble colors in in Yosemite. If you liked that feature (as I did) and want it back, I've got your back! []

  • The linked Ars Technica review pretty much only looks at surface level details, like icons, window buttons, menus, etc. Doesn't say anything about functionality, speed, or lower level concerns.

    And this line is misleading:

    It's a very Microsoft-esque way to roll out an OS: you give enthusiasts a chance to work with an early-but-reasonably-stable build in exchange for valuable bug-squashing feedback.

    Microsoft got the idea from Apple, who started their public beta program with the first version of OS X back in

    • by Lazere ( 2809091 )
      You do know Microsoft was doing public betas at least as early as Windows 98, right?
  • by CanadianMacFan ( 1900244 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @02:28PM (#47524097)
    Feels like I've already been doing beta testing since the last major release of iTunes has been released. It's been very buggy, especially where podcasts are concerned. They keep throwing more features in which seem to break basic functionality and slow the application down. It now takes over two seconds to delete a podcast episode since version 11.3 came out. And that's for every episode. If you want to delete three episodes it takes over six seconds. How do you write something that bloody slow? I fear updating to the new version in Yosemite for how bad it's going to be.
  • by wernst ( 536414 ) on Thursday July 24, 2014 @02:53PM (#47524289) Homepage

    Those of us of a certain age will probably find the codename of the new OS X oddly familiar.

    The so-called "Blue & White" PowerMac G3 was also code-named "Yosemite" ( Mine still works fine, 15 years later - it'll be old enough to drive and vote soon.

    Too bad my Yosemite Mac won't be able to run Yosemite OS X...

    • Yeah, but nobody is going to confuse a modern software branding with that ass-ugly hardware tower.

      Though, it was the first NewWorld ROM Mac, so that's worth something. And that case got infinitely better when they went with grey / graphite for the G4. It's still one of the best cases to work inside that's ever been made, since the logic board was mounted to the hinged door.

    • by azav ( 469988 )
      Yosemite OS X is IMO too ugly to use. Be glad it can't run it.
    • by jpkunst ( 612360 )
      Also known as the "Smurf Tower".
  • by azav ( 469988 )
    Terrible font - Helvetica Neue roman needs to die in a fire when compared to Helvetica medium or Lucida Grande.
    Font is too thin, spacing is too wide. Looks weak, girly, empty, frail. Ick.
    Terrible color scheme - too luminous, too garish, colors conflict with each other and are hard on the eyes. Unpleasant to view.
    Flat UI elements simply suck, look insubstantial and weak.
    Translucency is better, but still sucks. Why do we need this?

    Can't look at it. Don't want to look at a UI that hurts my eyes.
  • Is this the release that adds support for HiDPI on external displays? I was pretty disappointed when I got a 4k display to find that it was unusable under OS X 10.9.3. (You can drive it at 4k, but cannot scale the interface).
  • I wish I could run this in a Parallels Desktop VM, under 10.9. That would be much more convenient than having to set up a separate boot partition. But right now it appears unsupported... unless someone knows better?