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Activity Forums Creative Community Conversations Apple has lost the functional high ground

  • Phil Hoppes

    January 6, 2015 at 4:17 pm

    While I would agree that Tim clearly does not have the same focus that Steve had I think it is too soon to tell who’s management style succeeds. I worked with Apple a number of years ago as a supply vendor when Steve was there and while I do respect his accomplishments….. the guy was a dick. One could clearly ask a valid question of how much did Apple lose simply because good people left because they could not stand to work with the guy? Have we already forgotten the debacle that was Apple Maps under Steve? How about the initial rollout of Mobile Me? Yes, Apple has had some recent software issues and they are bothersome but it’s not like software development under Steve was all rainbows and unicorns either.

    With respect to Tim’s more charitable outlook on society, I for one am glad to see it. Again, Steve was a jerk, IMHO, especially when it came to charity. He openly said it numerous times. Apple certainly has the cash to afford to be more charitable and I’m glad to see the things that they are doing.

  • James Culbertson

    January 7, 2015 at 12:57 am

    [Helmut Kobler] “And the bugginess seems even worse now, not better.
    …and it’s all been done in tandem with a noticeable drop in product quality.”

    What hardware and software versions are buggy/lower quality in your experience?

    I have a new Mac Pro and new Mac Book Pro (both using 10.9.5) and everything is working perfectly with FCPX, Adobe CC apps, and various 3rd party hardware, plugins, etc. No problems over the last 6 months. I’d say that Apple’s quality control isn’t any worse than it ever has been.

  • Scott Witthaus

    January 7, 2015 at 1:05 am

    Agreed, James. No problems at all on my side either. Not sure what others are doing but I am not seeing it.

    Scott Witthaus
    Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
    1708 Inc./Editorial
    Professor, VCU Brandcenter

  • Walter Soyka

    January 7, 2015 at 7:01 am

    [Shane Ross] “This is true of any software. We ALL want the software to be made stable before new features are released.”

    I think that the OS is a very special case, because it’s the software that runs all the other software. Even a small change in how the OS works can have a major impact on how other software runs on it.

    In other words, the OS is a unique position to push its problems onto other developers to deal with.

    Walter Soyka
    Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
    Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
    @keenlive   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]

  • Walter Soyka

    January 7, 2015 at 7:45 am

    Here’s just a few from our little corner of the world:

    Artifacts with Resolve renders on nMP/D700 [link]. Resolved (rimshot) by using Boot Camp and running Resolve for Windows on the very same hardware, suggesting an on-going GPU driver issue.

    Slowdowns in Autodesk Smoke [link] caused by GPU driver changes in Mavericks/Yosemite. Workaround, downgrade to 10.8.5 unless you have new hardware that you can’t run 10.8.5 on. Then the workaround is upgrading your patience.

    System instability loading more than 400 plugins [link] with Ae CC 2014 and Pr CC 2014, requiring a reboot to recover, under 10.9 through 10.9.4. Resolved by updating to 10.9.5 which includes the bug fix.

    John says that SMB is better in Yosemite — glad to hear that! SMB has been a moving target since Apple dropped Samba in 10.7.

    All these problems are likely corner cases from Apple’s perspective, but they become huge functional issues for the developers and users of third-party software. SMB aside, I don’t think it’s fair at all to expect Apple to catch all these themselves in internal QC, so I’m not trying to cast stones here — computers are really complicated systems and some failure is inevitable.

    I just wonder if issues like these could be avoided if the OS X team didn’t have a big yearly upgrade imperative.

    Walter Soyka
    Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
    Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
    @keenlive   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]

  • James Ewart

    January 7, 2015 at 10:47 am

    I’m running quite old machines (Imac and Mac book Pro) with Yosemite and never have they been more stable than since I installed th

  • Steve Connor

    January 7, 2015 at 11:07 am

    Me too, I like Yosemite a lot, it’s improved speed on my 2008MP

  • Jeremy Garchow

    January 7, 2015 at 1:25 pm

    [Walter Soyka] “But it’s not just about users — it’s about developers, too”

    What I find interesting is Arment’s comment is generally from a developer’s perspective. While he doesn’t go in to detail, I would imagine it probably feels a little like being an Apple user that relys on the consumer services for business (like a lot of us here). Everything right now feels like it’s in flux, not that it is broken or incomplete, but simply moving really fast towards….something. The only problem is that we, as consumers and developers, don’t have a clear roadmap to the destination. That should not be a new feeling. If we take a good look around, it’s happening everywhere.

    I would imagine the AppStore model to be a frustrating venture. All at once amazing yet also limiting.

    I also think that Apple is pushing technology boundaries. We all know and have discussed that Apple isn’t going for the biggest and fastest, but I do feel like they are releasing as powerful machines as they and their technology partners can muster, while also being very efficient on many different levels, but mostly power and materials. There are inherent trade offs to this approach. And of course, the interaction of OS X and iOS and all of the services that Apple is building is probably where most of the problems stem. Perhaps these functions are taking longer than expected? Maybe there’s trouble in development land? Maybe these things really do take this long? Maybe nobody knows what they are doing anymore? I don’t believe that last one.

    Does this mean that Apple has to move as fast as they are so that they can get everything “merged” as quickly as possible? Or is this a fools errand, and they should move more slowly, stall bigger plans, make sure everything works before moving on? I don’t have these answers.

    I’ve been traveling a bit for work. A few of the flights has in flight entertainment with DirectTV and swipe a credit card and plug your headphones in to the chair and make sure your elbow doesn’t change the channel becuase the controls are right where your elbow rests on the arm rest. It’s expensive, doesn’t look that great, the hardware design is frustrating, and if your wallet is stowed with your carry on above your head, you can’t pay for it. My flight yesterday didn’t have any screens anywhere. Not on the backs of seats, they didn’t drop down from the ceiling, they didn’t have a safety video. But, they did have in flight entertainment where you connect your device to the internal wifi (for free) through the airline’s app, and in there are free movies, lots of free movies; even good free movies! I thought this was a major shift in thinking. At first glance, you felt that this was an older plane (which it wasn’t) or that the airline was doing everything it could to make your experience worse to charge for “premium” upgrades (article). As it turns out, it was one of the smartest technology moves I have seen for in-flight entertainment. I’m sure it will cost something some day, but for now, I’ll enjoy the free beta testing stage.

    So, is this why Apple is making reduced price software? They know that things aren’t quite good enough to charge the consumer more money? Is this rapid pace of development an effort to get to a more stable platform that includes and integrates every single Apple device a consumer owns? I don’t have these answers, but that’s what it feels like to me.

  • Tom Sefton

    January 7, 2015 at 3:22 pm

    From our perspective, the nMP has been a great purchase. It’s fast and very good for use with Adobe and RedCine X. The main issues we are having is with external devices being booted off the system for no reason. This can happen whilst being used at random with either USB2 or USB3 hardware, or with thunderbolt hardware too. We also have strange sequences of boot up where the machine forgets that an external sound card is attached. A couple of re-boots and all is well.


  • Mitch Ives

    January 7, 2015 at 3:34 pm

    [Helmut Kobler] “I can’t help notice that as soon as Jobs died, Cook began creating a “kinder, gentler” Apple — one with longer vacations for employees, with matching contributions to charities, with $20,000 subsidies for egg freezing and with mea culpas to scoundrels and shake down artists like Jesse Jackson during his ridiculous crusade over minority hiring in Silicon Valley.

    This has been Tim’s unique mark, and it’s all been done in tandem with a noticeable drop in product quality. I don’t think Tim is strong enough to ride herd over the sprawl that Apple has become due to its growth. Jobs could but Cook can’t. And Tim seems too interested in creating a culture that embodies his “progressive” values, instead of having a laser focus on the products themselves and attracting people who have that same focus (as opposed to those seeking a cushy, perk-laden job at a rich company).”

    I’ve been lamenting the same thing for some time now. If he would put as much effort into product perfection as he does with social issues, the company would look like the old Apple.

    Last year when I was over the 3 month mark and still waiting for my BTO new mac pro I wrote him an email and asked him if he could stop writing letters to sovereign states with social policies he didn’t approve of and instead fly to Austin, rent an apartment and stay there until he could figure out how to fix the problem delivering their product.

    When my iPhone 5 power button stopped working, Apple was no help. They claimed they had not seen this before, only to issue a free replacement recall one month after forcing me to buy an expensive replacement. When I brought this to their attention, they assured me that they would make this right. I gave up after 7 months of being passed around. Every time someone was making progress they were suddenly no longer with the company. In the end, AT&T, understanding customer service far better than Apple, stepped in and offered to make it right. I declined. Why should AT&T suffer financial loss when they had nothing to do with the piss poor customer service policies at Apple?

    As a customer, these days dealing with Apple feels a lot like dealing with Microsoft. But, hey it’s okay, as long as Tim has time to march in parades and jam his views of social policies down our throats. I mean it’s not like he’s supposed to be focused on better products or a satisfying customer service experience, right?

    Mitch Ives
    Insight Productions Corp.

    “Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.” – Winston Churchill

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