The Scope of macOS Catalina is Showcased in a Phenomenal Review

2 minute read
| Particle Debris

The Particle Debris article of the week comes from Daniel Eran Dilger at AppleInsider.

This extensive, 15,000 word, discussion of macOS Catalina takes us, with breathtaking scope and scholarship, through the history of macOS, why certain forward-looking technologies were implemented along the way, and what the end result has been with Catalina.

Author Dilger opens the discusion: “Here’s what Catalina delivers and why it’s so important to the future of the platform.” And he concludes with:

Take a closer look at Catalina and you’ll realize that Apple clearly wants to preserve the unique platform features of “Mac-like” computing rather than trying to merge its platforms into an iOS-Mac hybrid. Apple’s Mac Human Interface Guidelines state four “primary themes” that differentiate macOS apps from iOS, tvOS, and watchOS apps: “flexible, expansive, capable, and focused.”

In between those excerpts is a virtual book, of biblical proportions, that takes us on a grand journey through Catalina. But it’s not just a list of features. Author Dilger provides perspective on the development of these features through architectural planning and steady technical progression in macOS combined with continuing attention to what makes the Mac so special.

This article is a gold mine of information. It will open your eyes on all that macOS Catalina offers. And why.

It’ll be my Catalina bible for months to come.

The Week’s News Debris

• Of course the dot zero release of Catalina does have some problems. Download lockups have been mentioned. In fact, one of our TMO staff experienced just that. Here’s a report, just as a heads up. “Apple macOS Catalina install is causing a lot of trouble.”

• And if, for some reason, you just have to, Digital Trends explains “How to downgrade from MacOS Catalina to Mojave.” The process is geeky and a bit scary, but if you gotta do it, it’s nice have a written resource.

The Eclectic Light Company has a great article (with a flowchart): “Will Gatekeeper let me run that app in Catalina?” As you prepare to migrate to Catalina, read this as part of your app workflow analysis.

ars technica tells the story: “Political ads can lie if they want, Facebook confirms.” Of note:

Cable network CNN deemed the ads in question too misleading to broadcast and refused to air them. Facebook, however, considers the matter out of its hands.

Out of its hands indeed.

• We’ve heard in the past that Apple was working on a Touch ID mechanism embedded in the iPhone display. But it hasn’t happened, probably for technical reasons. But Patently Apple has found a 2019 Apple patent, and so perhaps we’ll eventually get that feature. “Apple Reveals Touch ID under the Display will use Sensors that consist of Optical Imaging Arrays.

• Apple’s SVP Phil Schiller is fond of talking about modern “computational photography.” Here’s a tutorial from CNET that takes us on a tour of that technology. “iPhone 11 and Pixel 4 cameras’ secret sauce: Why computational photography matters.” Good stuff.

• The internet browser field has pretty much settled on three competitors on the Mac side: Safari, Chrome and Firefox. But which is really the best? Digital Trends tackled that touchy subject from several technical perspectives: “The best browser for Mac in 2019: Safari vs. Chrome vs. Firefox.

I used to be a big fan of Firefox, but these days, I’m back to Safari. This article confirms my choice.

Apple adds "rent once, watch anywhere" to iTunes 12.6 for the Mac

iTunes fades into history.

• Finally, if you like technical, historical stories, this Business Insider article takes us down memory lane: “Apple is killing its most-hated app, iTunes. Here’s how it went from a popular music player to an outdated relic.

The Kelly Guimont wood chipper has arrived.


Particle Debris is a generally a mix of John Martellaro’s observations and opinions about a standout event or article(s) of the week followed by a discussion of articles that didn’t make the TMO headlines, the technical news debris. The column is published most every Friday except for holiday weeks.

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archimedes
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archimedes

Ars Technica also wrote a 13-page review as is their custom:
https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2019/10/macos-10-15-catalina-the-ars-technica-review/

Macsee
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Macsee

And after more than two years of being released, still no full APFS documentation: DiskWarrior 5.2 & Apple File System (APFS) What’s in the works The next major release of DiskWarrior will include the ability to rebuild APFS disks. Apple has recently released the “Read” portion of the APFS format documentation. Our developers are now waiting for the “Write” portion of documentation to update DiskWarrior to be able to safely rebuild Apple File System (APFS) disks. https://www.alsoft.com/diskwarrior5apfs Please, send feedback to Apple about it: https://www.apple.com/feedback/macos.html About Apple File System Apple File System Reference Revision History 2019-02-07 Corrected the discussion of… Read more »