updated 05:45 pm EDT, Wed June 13, 2007
ZDNet: OS X copies Vista
One ZDNet blogger has claimed that, at least in her eyes, Mac OS X Leopard is a copy of Windows Vista in many respects. "If you've seen Vista, there's no way you could help but compare the feature-complete Leopard beta Jobs showcased with Windows Vista," wrote ZDNet blogger Mary Jo Foley. "And -- surprise -- Vista looked pretty darn up-to-date in comparison." Foley says Leopard's new desktop is "not a whole lot different" from Vista's Aero and Sidebar, while the new Finder offers many of the same capabilities as the integrated "Instant Search" feature in Vista, which many industry watchers said closely resembles Apple's "Spotlight" technology that shipped on April 29th of 2005 -- more than two years ago -- with the company's current version of Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger. Most of the 'copied' features cited by Foley are known to have seen existed in various forms within the Mac community long before Vista began shipping to the general public earlier this year.
"What struck me at the June 11 Apple Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) event wasn't the glitzy demos, the rockstar-like worship of Apple CEO Steve Jobs or the 'I'm Steve Jobs' parody video by the 'I'm a PC' guy," Mary Jo Foley wrote. "Instead, it was the excitement by the 5,000 WWDC attendees about many technologies in the forthcoming Mac OS X 'Leopard' release that already exist in Windows Vista."
"I've sat through countless Microsoft demos of Vista at a variety of consumer and business events. I don't remember ever hearing thunderous applause when Microsoft showed off Flip 3D or Vista's ability to preview thumbnails of documents. The 'wows' were few and far between," the blogger continued. "Yet when Jobs put almost identical versions of these features in Leopard through their paces, there were lots of oohs and ahhs."
Facing the facts, who copied who?
The blogger compares Apple's QuickLook for live file previews with Vista's 'thumbnail preview' capability, and incorrectly states that Mac OS X Leopard is the first 64-bit only version of a desktop client.
"Vista comes in 32-bit and 64-bit varieties. And most expect Windows Seven will still be available in 32-bit flavors. Until 32-bit machines go away, it seems like a good idea to offer 32-bit operating systems."
Apple's Mac OS X Leopard does in fact support 32-bit applications, but also extends its capability to run 64-bit applications at native speeds in a top-to-bottom fashion, as was revealed during Apple's keynote address that kicked off WWDC 2007.
Core Animation, 'Spaces' of little interest?
Discussing Core animation, Foley cannot draw a Windows Vista comparison but suggests that WWDC developers attending Jobs' keynote did not seem "wowed" with the functionality. The blogger also points to Apple's 'Spaces' feature that allows users to group applications into separate areas, saying that while she hasn't seen any such feature in Vista, "the audience didn't seem overly impressed by it."
iChat borrows ideas from Vista, too?
Drawing even more comparisons, Foley points to Apple's new iChat software that will ship with Leopard, saying that the photo-boot effects and backdrops remind her of Vista's Meeting Space and/or the new Microsoft 'Shared View' code-named 'Tahiti.'
Boot Camp, Dashboard with widgets, and Time Machine
The blogger draws even more comparisons between Leopard and Vista by pitting Apple's Dashboard with widgets vs. Microsoft's Vista Sidebar with gadgets. Time Machine functionality "doesn't look anywhere near as cool" on Vista but seems to provide a lot of the same functionality, according to Foley.