Leopard Review


Well it’s been about a day and a half with Leopard, and after reading a few reviews, I’m happy with it.


While it has it’s little quirks, and Apple unnecessarily removed certain functionality for some arguably ineffective functionality, it still is a significant improvement over Tiger, and it’s growing on me.


Overall there’s no real grand features, but lots of polish, which is still really great. Most of the advancements occurred “Under the hood” at the API and Programming Level, which means while Leopard isn’t SUPER fantastic right now, it will be soon as developers discover the great new technologies emerging.


I’ve compiled a list for things I hate and love about Leopard below.


Annoying things in Leopard:


  • MDS still can’t be turned off (MDS = spotlight service), although spotlight is a lot fastetr
  • iTunes has skipped twice in the past half hour. It never does that. I think it might be the single-coredness of my first install.
  • Stacks are a bit pointless, but fairly useful.
  • Spaces are ok, but are more like switching around too much. I think it will come in handy for when I’m not in full desktop mode with dual display, but I can see using it with FCE and stuff
  • Maudio doesn’t work in any way (yet)
  • The Menu Bar is a bit dark when there’s a dark background, but it’s less distracting, however there’s a “star” right where the application is right now and it’s driving me up the wall. For those of you dying for a hack for this, you can always just make 20 pixels along the top of your desktop background white (or black for a consistent silvery look) and you’re done. No special apps or defaults writing required.
  • Time machine shows a status bar all the time when it’s backing up…maybe that’ll go away, but it’s ticking me off. Also, it didn’t exactly work the first few times, but I think it is now.
  • Notes folder randomly takes time to “Load” (Spinny thing) even though there’s only one note, wtd? UPDATED: I hate Mail notes and Todos. I am not using them whatsoever.
  • They did some weird thing with the bezel interface, making volume controls etc, harder to read. I’m pretty sure the drop shadow is gone.


Things I love in Leopard:


  • Scrolling background windows
  • The fact that when i’m done this note, I can just hit send. UPDATE: Not really, I went back to stickies.
  • Time Machine is SOOOO awesome.
  • Coverflow is neat, but not as useful as i thought it would be. We’ll see. Ars Technica goes into details about the UI changes in the Finder, but I find it pretty good.
  • QuickLook is excellent. It even does SVG! 
  • FrontRow is better….I guess. I wish I could use the same keyboard shortcuts, and also, I hate that it’s not the fwoosh it used to be. Also, it pauses iTunes when it launches. wtd is that? I don’t like it.
  • Instalations made with Installer now do the iTunes “Complete” sound when they’re done. Also, an obnoxiously large green check mark shows up. Great.
  • Mail.app is like Apple Outlook. I love it. Sort of.
  • The new network preference pane are excellent.
  • iCal, Mail, and pretty much everything is very quick. 
  • Terminal updates are nice, but I still like iTerm
  • My MacBook speakers actually have decent volume now UPDATE: Maybe not, I think iTunes was just preamped.
  • AirPort finally shows secured/not secured in listing
  • AirPort seemed to connect to networks really fast…
  • Not only does “Scroll another window” work, but you can also right click a non active application, VERY useful for when say, you ahve a window on a second monitor, move your mouse over to the window, have something selected and right click to copy it. Amazingly, it works! AWESOME!!
  • Cool feature: the checkbox in todo lists changes to an alert box when it is overdue
  • Photo Booth effects are neat, the hacks are neater.

* Overall very solid.