A Humorous Take on macOS: Like Linux of Old

macOS Catalina logo

The Particle Debris article of the week comes from a macOS developer writing at Nibble Stew.

After wrestling mightily with an install that was sabotaged by macOS “reserved space,” this developer got to thinking…

After my blood pressure dropped to healthier levels I got the strangest feeling of déjà vu. This felt exactly like using Linux in the early 2000s. Things break at random for reasons you can’t understand and the only way to fix it is to find terminal commands from discussion forums, type them in and hope for the best. Then it hit me.

This was not an isolated incidence. The parallels are everywhere. Observe:

Some excerpts….

Software installation

Linux 2000: There is only One True Way of installing software: using distro packages. If you do anything else you are bad and you should feel bad.

Apple 2019: There is only True Way of installing software: using the Apple store. If you do anything else you are bad and you should feel bad.

Laptop features

Linux 2000: it is very difficult to find a laptop with more than two USB ports.

Apple 2019: it is very difficult to find a laptop with more than two USB ports.

Advocate behaviour

Linux 2000: fanboys will let you know in no uncertain terms that their system is the best and will take over all desktop computer usage. Said fanboys are condescending elitist computer nerds.

Apple 2019: fanboys will let you know in no uncertain terms that their system is the best and will take over all desktop computer usage. Said fanboys are condescending elitist hipster latte web site designers.

These are just a few examples. The thing is, they really hit home. We need more macOS humor like this.

macOS Catalina: some headaches.

The Week’s News Debris

• I love the amazing reviews at ars technica. Here’s the site’s in-depth take on the iPhone 11 family. You will learn stuff. “The Apple iPhone 11, 11 Pro & 11 Pro Max Review: Performance, Battery, & Camera Elevated.” Take a gander especially at the chapter “System & ML performance.

• I’ve seen a lot of stories about the changes in macOS Catalina causing all kinds of headaches. Let’s start here, via Glenn Fleishman: “Can’t find your Time Machine backup after upgrading to Catalina? Look for a backupbundle.

It’s been reported at Macintouch that Catalina won’t boot from external Firewire drives. (This is via a Thunderbolt adapter, of course.) It seems Apple didn’t announce this to end users. Ouch.

• For a sampling of some reader feedback on Catalina installs, see: “Readers Report on macOS Catalina Install Issues.

• Apple is already working on macOS Catalina 10.15.1, now at beta 2. Cult of Mac has an update: “macOS 10.15.1 beta 2 brings fresh bug fixes to Mac.

• Of course, Microsoft Office 2011 is 32-bit and won’t run in Catalina. Apparently some users were surprised by this. (Puh-leeeze.) Anyway, here’s a note from Microsoft. The minimum version for Catalina is Office 2016.

• Finally, not ready for Catalina just now? Tired of nagging reminders in Mojave? See: “How to Hide MacOS Catalina from Software Update on Mac.

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.

7 thoughts on “A Humorous Take on macOS: Like Linux of Old

  • John:

    Enjoyable selection, as usual.

    I was in a Windows unfriendly environment back in the Naughties (2000s), so cannot comment on Linux whatsoever. Never used it. However, I had to train on Unix in medical school and beyond. Early on, I came to appreciate its robustness and security, particularly relative to Windows.

    This leads to macOS, which is built off of a Unix kernel. Over time, the principal feature of the OS has been, in my opinion, has been security. Granted, security is relative, and not absolute. Any commercially available OS can be compromised, given sufficient skill, time and resources. However, the new security features in Catalina have been, for me, the strongest attractant and the most compelling argument to make the upgrade, despite the documented bugs in the point naught release. In my personal use case, apart from a few initial short-term screen freezes, primarily when using Safari, all of which resolved after a few seconds, I have not encountered any other issues with this release.

    I do appreciate the feature and performance parity between apps on macOS and iOS. I recall all of the concerns about the ‘iosification’ of macOS, effectively as a ‘dumbing down’ of the latter’s inherent power, form and capabilities. In fact, we’ve seen how Apple have continued to leverage each component of ecosystem to enhance the performance of other components, certainly on the software side. The move to dedicated entertainment apps as a replacement for iTunes is an example, and appears to have addressed a major demand in the Apple user community. Rather than dumbing down, we see a harmonisation and standardisation of the user experience across devices, which should facilitate hardware adoption by removing performance barriers.

    Similarly, there appears to be convergent evolution in security feature parity, in that while macOS and iOS are different species, they are developing many of the same capabilities and functions where those provide a survival advantage.

    Duty calls.

  • Ho hum, IMHO the Ars Technica review is an exercise in filling out content for the sake of it – I don’t care if there’s a minimal ring round the camera or the case has an etched surface. The first thing I do is put a Tech24 screen protector on the front and an Apple leather case round the back, usually Product (Red). I’d never be using an Android phone so its just a matter of how much I want to load my contract up with.. so probably not a Pro, but triple cameras, yes please

  • I was a bit taken aback by the Ars Technica article. They said the 11 series was a nice improvement but in many areas, photography being the big one, Implied it was just upper middle of the pack. They kept saying feature X, Y, or Z was good, but not much better than the XS, and not as good as a model from Samsung, Google, or Huawei. And the author was very critical of the screen on the 11, though they were passably satisfied with the ones on the Pro models. It was clear they literally hated the one on the 11. They also made a point of mentioning several times how Apple uses a case design for three years, and this was the last year for this old dated case. The article subtly, and overtly, pushed how we should skip this year and wait. Get next years model, with the new case, better everything, and 5G.

    Honestly, I was totally back footed. My plan was to replace my SE and my wife’s 6 with new iPhone 11s. Now I’m not so sure. Ars Technica does quality journalism. If they were that unimpressed with the 11 series, it warrants having a rethink.

      1. Apple Insider, 9to5 Mac, and TMO say the 11 is great. The LCD is not as good as the screens in the Pro models, but nonetheless still very good. The Cameras are top notch. Battery life is great. Performance wonderful. Ars is not part of the Mac Universe, so I expected it to be a little more critical, But the overall negative tone really brought me up short . The criticism was one thing, but even the things they liked they seemed to damn with faint praise.

      2. Well, I will be getting one. A Pro for me, my wife doesn’t want that much horsepower (she is still using a 7).

      3. Likely I will too. Our SE and 6 are getting very long in the tooth. Overnight I had a good rethink and reread the AI article on the 11. I had to remind myself that 5G is a non issue for me. The bigger screen will help tremendously, (old eyes). The cameras are head and shoulders better than what we have. The 6 already won’t take the latest OS and I expect the SE will fall off the cliff next year. There are a lot of reasons to update and if I do, I want something that will last as long as possible. The 11 appears to be such a device.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

WIN an iPhone 15 Pro Max!

Enter our epic giveaway for a chance to win the latest iPhone 15 Pro Max!