Happy WWDC Day!

Monday, 2003-06-23; 00:05:00

A post devoted to today's WWDC announcements.

So if you didn't notice by hell freezing over, today is the big day. The Mac is now officially faster than the rest of the PC desktop competition. Finally. Well, we used to be back in the beige PowerMac G3 days, what with the Snail and Toasted Pentium Bunnie ads (lol it's so hilarious how the guy trips at the end). That would be classic if Apple released an updated version of these ads.

Anyway, the leaked specs were right on (and Steve Jobs claims it was all a mistake), and we've got a superfast PowerMac powered by a totally new chip, made by *jaw drops* IBM. Yes, the years of being hampered with Motorola are all over, and I don't hold them in high regard anymore. Thanks for.... a half-assed effort, I guess. :p

The PowerPC 970 is based on IBM's awesome Power4 chip, and because of this, Apple was able to pull off not just a Photoshop bake-off, but actual real-world tests in other applications and even raw SPEC scores. *gasp* Apple?! Not doing just a Photoshop bake-off?! OMG!

The PowerMac G5's design looks pretty sleek, and I must say that it's a welcome change from the "El Capitan" case as everyone keeps calling it. I was kinda getting sick of all that translucency plastic-y stuff. Ah, well, it was good while it lasted, but the G4 certainly wasn't all that. (We can put the G4 behind us, now -- for the most part, anyway.)

It's amazing that Apple pulled off just a modest $300 increase in price (if you look carefully, the base model is actually only $1799 since you can configure the "base" model down $200 by removing the SuperDrive and putting in a combo drive) while adding HyperTransport, a new processor, optical audio in and out, Serial ATA, PCI-X, DDR 400 SDRAM, and a 1 GHz system bus, not to mention being half as loud as the current G4s.

There are a few legitimate gripes -- the lack of a second optical drive (which Apple only recently put in their G4s, only to take it back out again in the new G5 tower), the lack of more than 2 hard drive bays (which shouldn't be too much of a problem if you order the 2 250 GB drives), the fact that it's 4 inches taller than the current G4 (unconfirmed by me), the fact that there's a piece of plastic when you open up the door to the innards (kind of defeats the purpose, but maybe it's easy to remove), and, of course, the price. The price increase is to be expected, though. Hopefully Apple is just gouging the early adopters to get as much money out of the pent-up demand before cutting prices later, though. ;)

All in all, I'm very impressed with the PowerMac G5. Hats off to Jonathon Ive, and his team who pulled off the PowerMac G5 design feat! Let's hope that Apple can live up to Steve Jobs' promise of being at 3 GHz in under 12 months.

I'm also very impressed by Panther, and I really want that so bad (since that's actually RELEVANT to my computer). The new exposé feature looks particularly practical and nifty, but I'm also looking forward to a faster Mail, Finder, and Preview, fast user switching, on the fly encryption/decryption of all my home folder's contents, and above all, Xcode (since I do do some developing on the side -- say your prayers, CodeWarrior!). If you're up for a random amusement, see the live stream, and watch the video from about 53:20 to around 54:20. :) That's the most random (but funny) thing I've ever seen in a Stevenote.

Of course, there's all the other obligatory stuff... iTMS tops 5 million purchases blah blah blah... Apple releases iChat AV (video-conferencing which is pretty slick, I must say, from what I've seen)... Apple releases the iSight... and Apple releases Safari 1.0 (yay Dave Hyatt, go get some much needed rest!).

But all those pale in comparison to the PowerMac G5 and Panther. :)

One random thing I've noticed is that I take a lot of my song cues from the promo videos that Apple puts out -- for example, the new PowerMac G5 Promo video plays a song called "Weapon of Choice" by Fatboy Slim... which is definitely a catchy song (the music video is random, though -- a guy dances around a hotel for the duration of the song). I dunno if it's sad or not that I listen to new songs first from Apple....

Well anyway, until next time... and, once again, happy WWDC Day!

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