Wed 4/23 OS X Beta Seed Program Advice

David Sparks provides sound advice for members of the OS X Beta Seed Program.

  1. Don’t install early betas on a computer you want to get work done on. You will have apps break and be spending significant amounts of time nursing things along. Ideally, you’d install it on a second Mac for all but the latest of builds.
  2. Don’t bitch to developers about apps breaking in developer-build software. It makes tons of sense to inform developers when you catch bugs of their software in an operating system update. However, giving a poor review or expecting that they’ll drop everything and patch for a still-unfinished operating system is just ridiculous.

I thought this advice would go without saying, but David knows how the general public reacts to beta software; they expect it to work flawlessly while showing off new features their friends don’t have yet.

As David points out, the real question is why now?

A final question I have about all of this is why we are getting this now. It seems there is a lot of rumbling about Apple issuing a re-designed OS X this year to more closely parallel the new iOS look. If that is the case, I suspect they’ll need more testers than ever and WWDC is just a few months away.

I am both excited, and worried about this possibility. Excited the Mac will be seeing more attention in the immediate future, but worried that attention will only make the Mac more like iOS.

For the last couple of years I have shied away from Apple’s beta software, because the new features were so heavily documented online, and I preferred the stability of the previous release. I doubt the beta seeding of OS X 10.10 will be any different. Especially if Apple incorporates a new look, which requires a visual update for all of my apps.

Tue 4/22 Apple Opens OS X Betas to the Public

The Loop has the story:

Big news today from Apple: the company is opening its OS X Beta Seed Program to its customers. In the past, you needed to be a developer to access beta builds of OS X, but as of OS X 10.9.3, released earlier today, customers can also apply for access.

“Join the OS X Beta Seed Program and help make OS X even better. Install the latest pre-release software, try it out, and submit your feedback,” reads Apple’s OS X Mavericks Beta page.

Four years ago it used to cost hundreds of dollars to sign up as a Macintosh Developer and gain access to the latest Mac OS X betas. Then on March 5, 2010, in response to the equally priced iPhone developer program, the price was lowered to just $99. Starting today, the barrier to access the latest OS X betas has been eliminated. I wonder if Apple will do the same with the latest betas of iOS?

“My sympathies go out to the good folks in Apple [Support]“Frank Tisellano

Tue 4/22 Apple Drops .Mac iChat in Snow Leopard

Straight from the Apple Knowledge Base:

To ensure a secure and reliable experience, customers using a or ID to login to the AIM service via iChat must upgrade their Mac to OS X version 10.7.2 or later by June 30, 2014 to continue using the AIM service.

Customers are advised to upgrade to Lion if possible, or create a new AIM ID if not.

I wonder if and email addresses will continue to work in alternative AIM clients such as Adium?