back to article Mac OS X Mavericks 'upgrade' ruins iWorks

Apple has massively upset its Mac productive app users by dumbing down Pages, Numbers and Keynote to match fondleslab versions. When the Mac OS Mavericks upgrade came on line, an upgrade of the iWork suite to v4.3 of the Pages (word processing), Numbers (spreadsheet) and Keynote (presentation) applications followed. After the …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Buzzword

    Ribboned for your pleasure

    Sounds just like Microsoft Office 2007 and the Ribbon. Cue lots of angry users.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

      Sorry,

      The ribbon only changed the interface. It did NOT remove functionality like the Apple Iworks downgrade did.

      Angry users for both office software yes, but most PC users never bothered to actually look at the "ribbon" or the "button" they just complained since it was something new to learn. Mac users just had their software degraded to laughable proportions.

      Admittedly MS never explained any of that but I can do anything in Orefice 2007 that I could have in Orefice 2003 without significant difficulty.

      1. thesykes

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        not only did they not get rid of functionality, but, the old menu options are still there, I still use Alt+E, I, S to paste special, even though the options are just one click away on the ribbon. Old habits die hard.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          Worst downgrade ever: when MS removed VBA from Mac Excel. argh.

        2. Fluffy Bunny
          Pint

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          It's generally quicker and more comfortable for your hands to use a four key shortcut, than move your hands to the mouse, navigate to the correct location (it is a very small square and needs precision), click it without accidentally moving the mouse and finally moving your hands back to the keyboard.

      2. Stevie Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: I can do anything in Orefice 2007

        Except use the spell checker it seems.

      3. Hans 1
        Linux

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        Apple sucks on this, but they are certainly not the only suckers in town ... these are just some sample MS cockups:

        Windows 8 - exactly the same bullshit: treating a desktop like a tablet.

        Or specific MS Office bullshit:

        Ok, grab Office 2003 powerpoint and move a callout around (by clicking in the bubble), notice how the callout sticks to the position it is pointing to, this is great. Resize the callout, it still points to the object it is supposed to ... now try the same in Office 2010 ... yeah, the callout no longer points at the same position when you resize or move it - this drives ppl nuts.

        Word formatting is getting worse with each new release. Especially when you are working with lists - how often do you copy-paste shit around to get a proper list in Word 2010 ? Thank god they added the same "feature" to powerpoint.

        Excel still cannot open CSV files, you have to import them ... or do a "sed 's/,/\t/g'" ... because MS somehow thinks that comma-separated values means tab-separated values ... ;-) Ok, this has not changed, but still sucks golf balls through garden hoses...

        The Mac versions of office no longer support VBA, because the blokes who wrote the unmaintainable innards of the vba runtime on Mac had already retired. The Mac version cannot correctly display Windows Office documents and vice versa. MS cannot even get Office right on Mac and Windows ... ouch.

        Thank god I use OpenOffice ... one document displays exactly the same across the following OS's:

        Linux, FreeBSD (all BSD's in fact), Windows, Mac OS, Solaris, AIX, HP-UX ... export to PDF goes lightning fast and comes bundled, native SVG support - MS Office sucks, period.

    2. SuccessCase

      Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

      Apple are probably taking the same approach as they took with Final Cut Pro which resulted in many angry users on release (but now has matured into a very good next gen pro video editor with better workflows). Much more so than Microsoft, they are prepared to anger users to affect a big shift in architecture to where they want to be. They did it when they shifted to OSX. When they moved from Power PC to Intel, when they reduced features moving from the abysmal MobileMe to iCloud, when they cut out some features from iTunes in the recent 11 release.

      The new iWorks is a complete rebuild incorporating a new file format. My guess is these are the reasons for the missing functionality:

      1. The new file format will be re-architected to use CoreData and to be optimised to make each atomic element within the file as independent and self contained as possible. Mobile and Flash drives work better with a different file architecture than apps build for PC's with a large amount of DRAM. Additionally, internally, I expect the file architecture will have been migrated to be database (CoreData) based, and will support the newly improved CoreData database iCloud synchronisation (which also prior to iOS7 was a disaster. Document synchronisation was working fine, but database file synchronisation was in effect broken. Core Data has had a lot of work done on it for the release of iOS7 this year and now works as originally intended).

      CoreData synchronisation will rely on the document being broken into easily addressable atomic document elements which can be independently retrieved and edited to support the collaborative working via iCloud and the web interface. Changing the internal storage format to the extent Apple have will probably have meant pretty much a ground up re-write was required. I expect the shortcomings of CoreData synchronisation over the past couple of years has been a major drag on the release why this current version of iWork has been so long in the making.

      2. Applescript was probably removed because running a client side scripting engine in conjunction with a collaborative editing synchronisation means background processes can mutate the data structures the scripting engine (which without a substantial re-write, must always be re-entrant to the main thread) is iterating over. Collaborative synchronisation then either results in many many edge cases that have to be overcome to keep the model simple, or additional programming API's for dealing with background threads mutating data (which would then require a style of programming that would not be well suited for users who are only used to writing in scripting languages). I expect apple script will only be re-introduced if they can sort out all the edge cases, or (more likely in my book) through the AppleScript engine scripting directly through a web API (the web API will probably mostly hidden to the End user/script author).

      3. Apple were clearly having severe problems getting iOS7 out the door and, by all accounts, took resources off Mavericks and (I expect also) iWork, to ensure they got the release out. The iOS7 beta was far more buggy than previous iOS releases. They clearly had a lot to do and I was surprised they managed to fix the number of deep seated problems that were still present in the penultimate (pre-GM) release. There is plenty of evidence resources were taken from Mavericks. Just look at the mix of new icon styles for maps, pages, numbers and iBooks, with the old style icons for safari and the Calendar app and contacts. The calendar in particular is a strange mix of the most flat iOS graphic app style mixed with the old style icon. It looks to me like they set a strict cut-off deadline and avoided changing anything that didn't make the cut. I expect these inconsistencies will be resolved with future updates. If resources were removed from the project in the lead up to July, it would have had an impact on the number of features that would make the final cut.

      Having said all of the above. My daughter who is at Uni, is using the new Pages and much prefers it because of the convenience of the iCloud data storage giving her access via mobile. Essay writing is probably a pretty typical style of use case for iWorks and for such non-demanding work it has a few advantages over the previous release and just generally feels nicer. She can also share her essays with me and I can edit them in the web interface to fix any typos I see while I'm talking with her on FaceTime which is nice and works very well (this feature is actually very good. The web interface is IMO a fair bit nicer than that for Google docs - though admittedly I haven't used that recently so don't know if it has improved much in the meantime). The interface is overall less cluttered, easier to use and provides a better basis for incrementally adding in the missing features and new features on top, but for sure it has a way to go with some of the more advanced features.

      1. WhoaWhoa

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        "Essay writing is probably a pretty typical style of use case for iWorks"

        ... or,

        "Essay writing is probably a pretty typical use for iWorks"?

        Bit of a traditionalist, myself. Remember the days when there was a language called English taught, and learned, in schools.

        1. SuccessCase

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          @WhoaWhoa. Your criticism is unwarranted; though admittedly I should have capitalised Use Case. A Use Case is a term of art in software engineering. It is a workflow defined from the user's perspective without reference to software or architecture limitations. It is entirely correct and actually says something quite specific to say "essay writing is probably a pretty typical style of Use Case for iWorks" because by saying that I am indicating Apple will have been focussing on a set of common Use Cases that would cover such user needs as "write and essay", "write a report" or "write a letter," and not the more esoteric needs such as "do a mail-merge". Use Cases can contain a main flow which is the most user focussed friendly "do what I want" flow and can also include alternative or branched flows to deal with exceptions or the unexpected. Indeed my username is a reference to the main flow which in software analyst nomenclature is referred to as the Success Case; the flow which best and most directly serves the user's needs.

          1. Kristian Walsh

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            I find that use-cases aren't a good starting point for UI design: because they're ultimately describing functions of the software, they can only explain what has to be done, but not why, and they give very little guidance on appropriate ways to achieve it.

            Normally, I start with a set of user scenarios - each describes a typical user (including relevant attributes such as computer literacy, education, fluency in whatever language the software displays its text in, and co-ordination), and a transcript of their interaction with the software. Each of those interactions would be equivalent to a traditional use-case, but by combining them into a narrative, you make it easier for the developer implementing the system to understand what the intent behind each use-case is.

            Also, by humanising the user in each scenario, you also remind the implementor of the UI that not all users are like them.

            As for iWork, I gave up on Pages as being unable to handle even the simplest kind of technical document (you have to resort to hacks to use 1, 1.1, 1.1.1 style section headings, and they have a habit of disappearing across a save), and anything I did in Numbers wouldn't interoperate well with Excel or OpenOffice sheets, Keynote is a good slide-maker, but my experience has taught me that a good slide presentation is horribly time consuming to create, and a bad slide presentation is a waste of everyone's time, so I tend to avoid producing them for talks.

            1. Stevie Silver badge

              Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

              [4 Kristian Walsh]

              "Normally, I start with a set of user scenarios - each describes a typical user (including relevant attributes such as computer literacy, education, fluency in whatever language the software displays its text in, and co-ordination), "

              That only leaves you with a product only the users you know about can make work. I typically start with what needs to be done and successively and iteratively work on the UI bits that can be misunderstood by a dolt. That way, one doesn't lose sight of the basic facts that underpin the business model and swamp them with a UI so clever the job can't be done any more.

              I could cite an example jointly engineered for a government application of some great importance and high visibility by two of the most celebrated companies in the IT world, an application that took a fairly involved but essentially simple job done on old greenscreen terminals and made something so flexible no-one could use it to do anything at all, but won't because I signed a document saying I would keep certain things secret.

              There is no special science to making software for other people to use. You use the same process that is used to make can openers or socket sets or cars, (although I can detect a whiff of "new graduate engineer enhancement" in the design process of the car these days, when people can get into a vehicle and not be able to figure out how to get it to go despite decades of the design needs being quite definitely pinned down).

              You look at the job that needs doing, you look at the things people can do and you make the last fit the first as best as you can. Naturally, sometimes you can't get a perfect fit for every case in one tool. That's why you can buy left handed scissors. But you can make the tool work for the vast majority by not falling in love with the build process itself.

          2. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            "A Use Case is..."

            I expect that many readers know exactly what a use case is. However, unless you have access to and can reference the specific analysis documents you suppose exist as a retrospective "justification", the fact remains that dragging superfluous technical jargon into a sentence which is better served by plain English does not improve the style, content, or credibility of your discourse.

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            @SuccessCase, if your daughter is in "uni" then she probably is becoming dumber as we speak. Dumb is the new smart. Just ask Apple, Google, MS, ad nauseam. Of course a new generation of humans taught to be dumb might actually bring about the next human evolution and eventual extinction when the machine stops. So it's all roses for the extinctionists. Happy deaths to all.

            (PS. Not WhoaWhoa typing this. Just another cranky punk ass.)

          4. Blitterbug
            Happy

            Re: Use Case is a term of art in software engineering

            No, it's not. It's jargon. Speaking as a software engineer of some 30 years vintage, only managers use phrases like this. It's hardcore buzzword bingo. You've been busted, me bucko!

            1. SuccessCase

              Re: Use Case is a term of art in software engineering

              "It's hardcore buzzword bingo. You've been busted, me buck!"

              I suppose RUP, SCRUM and RAD are just minor acronyms for buzzwords and they are all just minor things no real software engineer worth his salt has heard of or refers to as well. And my 25 years experience running large scale multi-company, international, software integration projects as an engineer and as a manager where 3/4 of the projects I have ever worked on have had requirements expressed through Use Cases, disqualify me from knowing what I'm talking about. OK.

              1. Blitterbug
                Unhappy

                Re: ...disqualify me from knowing what I'm talking about. OK,

                ...lighten up, Mr Success. No one said you didn't know your job. Don't let a bit of light joshing from a self-confessed grammar nazi and 'campaigner for plain English' penetrate your armour so easily...

                1. WhoaWhoa
                  Pint

                  Re: ...disqualify me from knowing what I'm talking about. OK,

                  "Re: ...disqualify me from knowing what I'm talking about. OK,

                  ...lighten up, Mr Success. No one said you didn't know your job. Don't let a bit of light joshing from a self-confessed grammar nazi and 'campaigner for plain English' penetrate your armour so easily..."

                  :-) :-) :-)

                  The Register's enduring appeal is that there are many participants who "get it". And those that don't contribute every bit as much, in their own way.

                  Have a pint. Here's to slurd spech.

              2. WhoaWhoa

                Re: Use Case is a term of art in software engineering

                "And my 25 years experience running large scale multi-company, international, software integration projects as an engineer and as a manager where 3/4 of the projects I have ever worked on have had requirements expressed through Use Cases, disqualify me from knowing what I'm talking about. OK."

                The problem was not distinguishing between a software design document, in which context use cases might be entirely appropriate jargon, and a discussion in a forum about your personal view about the suitability of a word processor for an essay writer. The essay writer might use a word processor, but they would not, knowingly, apply a "style of use case" to their essay.

                I refrained from asking what you meant by a "style" of use case, though that flipping between the formal and informal use of language was, um, "interesting".

                There are times to step back from ingrained management speak and renew an acquaintance with the English language. A forum discussion can provide good opportunities. A technical forum might, even, be a particularly good place to use English and jargon when each is appropriate.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Use Case is a term of art in software engineering

              Another 30+ year veteran here.

              The developers in the office implemented an order entry page. Now me, I would have expected to see a total value at the bottom, sort of so one knew how much one had spnt on the order - preferably updated as each line was entered. Apparently there was no "Use Case" for this "feature", so there is no total.

              This was my first confrontation with the phrase "Use Case", and that phrase is now batting zero and 1.

      2. Mike Richards Silver badge

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        'My daughter who is at Uni, is using the new Pages and much prefers it because of the convenience of the iCloud data storage giving her access via mobile. Essay writing is probably a pretty typical style of use case for iWorks and for such non-demanding work '

        I think the key phrase there is 'non-demanding'. Pages is a toy, albeit a pretty one. But as soon as you need proper editing features or handling references and bibliographies it is completely out of its depth.

        Somehow Apple just managed to make it worse.

        After the technicolor dog's breakfast that is the new iOS7 GUI it's hard to see if Apple is even bothering to test stuff before shipping.

        1. SuccessCase

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          Er no, the old and new Pages integrate fully with Reuters/Thomson Scientific EndNotes software, about the most sophisticated citation and Bibliography management solution imaginable.

          1. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            "Er no, the old and new Pages integrate fully with Reuters/Thomson Scientific EndNotes software, about the most sophisticated citation and Bibliography management solution imaginable."

            Really?

            That speaks volumes about your powers of imagination.

            1. SuccessCase

              Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

              @WhoaWhoa. Tip: When you next get bent out of shape, try keeping the urge to type a nasty reply in check. It's only a hobbyist tech discussion and there's no need for it.

      3. WhoaWhoa

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        "She can also share her essays with me and I can edit them in the web interface to fix any typos I see while I'm talking with her on FaceTime which is nice and works very well..."

        Known as plagiarism, in the trade. Unless, of course, she credits your input to her essays.

        Oh, and just because your daughter might say, "Uni", instead of university, it doesn't make you young and trendy to copy her, any more than letting her see you dancing would.

        But, Apple... desire for trendiness image... all seems to fit.

        1. AussieinHK

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          You're obviously clued in. Plagiarism is taking someone else's work(s) and presenting it as your own or taking credit for it without acknowledging the original creator / artist. I think what is being referred to is more commonly known as proof reading or editing.

          1. HelenaHandcart

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            Proof-reading/3rd party editing, however minor and even when done by your mum, is strictly forbidden by some universities. The daughter needs to check the university's policies on plagiarism and malpractice. By the way, no matter how easy it is to use iCloud storage, if it fails for any reason then the daughter is not going to get sympathy from the university. The university will provide its own secure storage and if a student chooses not to use that facility but to rely on iCloud, Dropbox etc instead, then the student will be held culpable if data loss leads to missing an assignment deadline.

            1. SuccessCase

              Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

              @HelenaHandcart

              1. Look up the meaning of plagiarism. It doesn't apply to what I wrote.

              2. I'm sorry that is simply nonsense. Link to a single University policy document where what you say is the case (most of them have such documentation facing the public and searchable from Google). Almost every college advises the complete opposite and RECOMMENDS having someone else proof-read your essays (including Harvard and Yale). That is GOOD PRACTICE and almost every walk of life there is recognition the writer is the worst person to do the proof-reading.

              "By the way, no matter how easy it is to use iCloud storage, if it fails for any reason then the daughter is not going to get sympathy from the university" You mean, if your hard disk drive goes down, or your homework gets eaten by the dog you your essay gets no mark ? Blow me down, now you mention it, each college I attended when I was younger also had a 1:1 correspondence between getting essays marked and actually handing them in. Those sneaky lecturers seem to be getting a bit tough on our poor little students don't they?

              You have of course, just given a very good reason for using iCloud storage. Your document is cached locally, plus available in the cloud plus, like for all modern OSX documents, it contains every prior revision in case the latest version gets messed up with an "undetected until it's too late" bad cut and paste job or some other such snafu, plus my daughter has time machine back-ups, plus she is working on the document with access to it just she would any other and can still can upload it to her university online store as she can with any other document, so really what is your point?

              Actually I got your point. It's "find a way to take a side-swipe at that nasty commenter who has a different opinion to me and suggest he is in some way unethical." Poor. Very poor.

              1. HelenaHandcart

                Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

                I did not say that proofreading constitutes plagiarism. I said that some universities consider it to be malpractice and that students should check the policy. Here is an example of such a policy: http://www.leeds.ac.uk/AAandR/cpff.htm. I did not say that anyone was being unethical; what I said was that students need to check the policies at their own universities before asking anyone to proofread their work.

                Universities have procedures for students to apply for deadline extensions or for mitigating circumstances to be taken into consideration if they are unable to complete assessed work. However, loss or failure of personal IT equipment, including cloud storage is unlikely to be considered grounds for an extension or mitigating circumstances appeal. Universities provide facilities such as secure file storage and remote access for students. If these fail and a student loses work then the university is obliged to take this into account. If the student keeps all her work on her personal laptop, portable drives or personal cloud storage then the university will take the view that the student does not deserve special consideration because s/he could (and should) have used the university facilities. Your daughter should check the policies on extensions/special circumstances and on cloud storage at her own university.

            2. bep

              Proofreading

              Is proofreading really forbidden? Given that it is axiomatic that you can't proof read your own copy I find that astoiunding. Of course there are people who think they can proof their own copy, but they are worng (see what I did there? Did I make any other non-deliberate mistakes - probably). Do lecturers enjoy reading essays with lots of typos?

              1. WhoaWhoa

                Re: Proofreading

                "Do lecturers enjoy reading essays with lots of typos?"

                No. And that is the sort of reason why so many years of education are focussed on teaching children to read and write properly. However university is a place where high levels of that competence should be taken for granted. Unfortunately, there are many universities where that is no longer the case. That does, though, make it easier for the better ones to shine as a result of not compromising their expectations of students.

                A parent correcting their university son's or daughter's typos is an indictment of the offspring's education and self-sufficiency. I know a fair few students who would refuse to accept such parental hand-holding in an area in which they felt they had already passed their rite of passage; and parents who would, similarly, no more offer such help than offer to wipe their grown up offspring's bottom. I know other parents / children who would act differently.

              2. WhoaWhoa

                Re: Proofreading

                "Given that it is axiomatic that you can't proof read your own copy I find that astoiunding."

                You can. Writers do it all the time. Even school children are taught to proof read their own work.

                "Of course there are people who think they can proof their own copy, but they are worng"

                They're not. See above. Or consult a dictionary, or even Wikipedia.

                "(see what I did there?"

                Yes.

                If that had been an accidental mistake you'd have demonstrated that it's easy to miss mistakes when proof reading your own work, especially if you do it straight after writing it. But you left it intact so if it had been a mistake originally your proof reading had worked, but you chose to leave the mistake to make a point.

                However, "astoiunding" highlighted the difficulty better.

                This feels like matching parentheses in Lisp. Deservedly so. Time for a coffee. (And to lighten up a bit. ;-) ).

                1. SuccessCase

                  Re: Proofreading

                  "Time for a coffee. (And to lighten up a bit. ;-) )"

                  So when you want to lighten-up you grab yourself a coffee? It's making sense now...

                  1. WhoaWhoa

                    Re: Proofreading

                    "So when you want to lighten-up you grab yourself a coffee? It's making sense now..."

                    You are erroneously inferring causality from two independent events.

                    Lightening up is a habit worth fostering, I'd suggest, with or without coffee. ;-)

          2. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            "Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            You're obviously clued in. Plagiarism is taking someone else's work(s) and presenting it as your own or taking credit for it without acknowledging the original creator / artist. I think what is being referred to is more commonly known as proof reading or editing."

            Plagiarism and editing (by another person) are not mutually exclusive.

            Plagiarism is passing off another person's work as your own. If another person edits your work, making changes, and you do not credit that other person's changes you are passing off their work as your own. There are contexts in which that's normal and expected, but submitting work for assessment in an academic context is not one, unless it is explicitly permitted.

            And once the mental "adjustment" has been made to allow a parent, for example, to help little Johnny or Jane to (they hope) get a better grade than they could have done by themself it become a small step to suggest a "tiny" extra example or a "tiny" rearrangement of words or ideas. And if that tiny change is really just part of the editing, then a slightly bigger change would "help", and would be OK, wouldn't it?

            It used to be the case that pupils / students were expected to learn to do their own proof reading, make their own spelling and punctuation corrections. It is more common now in some contexts (in the UK at least), especially in schools, to look the other way, because so much focus is put on grading schools by often-meaningless (but easy to measure) civil servant, desk-dwelling administrator-designed criteria that put huge pressure on schools to increase their pupils' grades.

            Looking around, at the "leaders" of industry and commerce, the political "leaders", the "getting away with what you can" approach is the example set almost everywhere, almost all the time. So little surprise if many parents become complicit in this, especially with their own little Johnny or Jane.

            But there are also examples a-plenty where getting someone else to do the work you need to do for yourself does not wash. In fields in which real ability rises to the top and no excuses can substitute, people work by themselves; parents or coaches or teachers do all that they can to encourage Johnny or Jenny to do that work, but they do not do it for them. A sports trainer and an athlete know that a press-up done by the coach does not develop the athlete's fitness. Likewise with scales and musicians, or potential winners of the Fields medal and PhD supervisors. The teachers might, do, demonstrate and explain, but they do not do the learner's work for them. Of course in such fields it is quite obvious that a trainer's press-up does not improve an athlete's fitness, or a teacher's scale a musician's skill. But when assessment is viewed primarily for the sake of the resulting grade, rather than as a tool for improving ability, is viewed as the goal there is temptation for a parent or teacher to "inflate" a parent to "inflate" the grade by their own direct contribution, knowing that they will probably get away with it. This is short-sighted and counter productive, since the son / daughter / student is not improving in the way that the athlete doing their own press-ups or the singer practicing their own scales is improving. Worse, they are being trained to get away with someone else doing their work for them when they can: a habit that can lead to a life time of not developing as well as they might have.

            If a university explicitly states that a student may ask a parent to proof read and correct work, that is one matter. Many universities have regulations that state that work submitted by a student for assessment must be all their own. Often, even, students are required to sign a statement to this effect. Not that long ago such a statement would have been superfluous as everyone would have understood that to be so, but such have been the shifts in "acceptable" standards of integrity that explicit statements are now seen to be necessary.

            Once politicians caught with their hand in the till would have immediately resigned, without prompting, for they knew they had violated a standard that was inviolable. Now governemnt organisations feel it's OK to side-step their own laws and spy on the very citizens to whom they are, in theory, accountable. When acceptable standards shift the consequences can be subtle and wide-reaching as the "getting away with it" approach spreads into other fields.

            So, having a little additional one-to-one session with university-attending son or daughter to show them how to use a dictionary and how to construct sentences or punctuate is one thing. Editing their work whilst on the 'phone is trading a short term mark gain for a long term disservice which diminishes their independence, integrity and honesty. It is the parent's choice about how they wish to influence their offspring, but making an even ever-so-slight choice towards honesty or dishonesty, independence or dependence has a cumulative effect over the years for which the parent might feel growing pride, or a tiny bit of sadness at the slightly tarnishing, character diminishing effect of reduced integrity.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          "Oh, and just because your daughter might say, "Uni", instead of university, it doesn't make you young and trendy to copy her, any more than letting her see you dancing would."

          I'm American so I don't know the nuances of when English people say "uni" vs. "university" but I've met a fair number of English people of all ages and they ALL say "uni" and I never got the sense from any of them that they were trying to sound trendy by doing so?!

          1. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            'I'm American so I don't know the nuances of when English people say "uni" vs. "university"'

            'nuff said.

            1. Lusty

              Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

              "'I'm American so I don't know the nuances of when English people say "uni" vs. "university"'

              'nuff said."

              Of course the Oxford English Dictionary does include the word Uni separately, so perhaps that American knows British English better than certain obnoxious posters on this thread. Certainly better than those who think using Uni to shorten University is done to look trendy but for some reason shortening enough to 'nuff isn't.

              1. WhoaWhoa

                Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

                "Certainly better than those who think using Uni to shorten University is done to look trendy but for some reason shortening enough to 'nuff isn't."

                Glad you spotted the irony.

                Or did you?

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

                  "Glad you spotted the irony.

                  Or did you?"

                  We all probably would have if we thought you were smart enough to have meant it ironically. Unfortunately your bizaare rantings on this thread have shown otherwise...

                  1. WhoaWhoa

                    Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

                    "We all probably would have if we thought you were smart enough to have meant it ironically. Unfortunately your bizaare rantings on this thread have shown otherwise..."

                    In contrast, you present carefully argued lines of reasoning.

              2. WhoaWhoa

                Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

                "perhaps that American knows British English"

                O perhaps they know American?

            2. WhoaWhoa

              Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

              ''I'm American so I don't know the nuances of when English people say "uni" vs. "university"'

              'nuff said.'

              I have to apologise. That was a bit below the belt.

              I think the recent US two-fingered salute to the rest of the world regarding spying has tainted my reaction to things American, although I recognise that many US citizens are equally appalled by increasing disdain of politicians and spies for the very population they are employed to serve.

          2. elderlybloke

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            Down in the South Pacific it is often called Varsity.

            Never went there myself.

        3. lpcollier

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          It's not plagiarism to get help with typos.

          1. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            "It's not plagiarism to get help with typos."

            If it's just a typo, help isn't needed, just a bit of effort to re-read and correct your own typing mistakes. If another person made changes that you wouldn't have made and you pass those changes off as your own work by not attributing them, that is an example of plagiarism, although you might choose to view it as a trivial one.

            If there were no problem, the son or daughter would presumably have no reservations about putting, "daddy helped correct my typos" at the bottom of the work...?

      4. EPurpl3

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        ROFL, at least does they pay you for this?

        The only logical explanation for this downgrade is to make it more usable for the common iTards.

      5. Harman Mogul

        Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

        Strewth, bloke writes a great article free of charge and is majorly downvoted for it. What's that about?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

          @Harman Mogul

          This is The Register. When articles are published about Apple that have a negative headline all the Apple hater's pile in to have a dig, and no matter how rational a comment may be, if they think is even slightly Apple sympathetic, they will down-vote it. I've learned the measure of success on here isn't down-votes, but to check if there is a comment that carries a large number of down votes, but for which there are no rational (non-trollish) replies which engage with the argument. When there are only emotional responses and ad-hominem attacks, that is actually a pretty good indication the comment has had impact. If there were good arguments against it, you can be sure the down-voters would be making them.

          1. WhoaWhoa

            Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

            "When articles are published about Apple that have a negative headline all the Apple hater's pile in to have a dig, and no matter how rational a comment may be, if they think is even slightly Apple sympathetic, they will down-vote it."

            No.

            When companies portray themselves as supreme examples of "style" over substance, parade their corporate egos and whip up their acolytes to parade their individual egos similarly, comments here often reflect a disdain for the approach.

            Yes, there is pointed humour, too, sometimes. And certain types of corporate behaviour tend to invite such attention.

    3. izntmac

      Re: Ribboned for your pleasure

      I still prefer the old Office 2003 interface vs. the new "fluent" user interface of Office 2007-2013. It matters on what you are comfortable with. Office 2013 isn't bad with a toolbar for pull down menus added. iWorks shouldn't have made the same mistake as Microsoft did. Forcing the changes on people with the iOSizattion of OS X. Hopefully Apple will fix the changes or people will continue to use iWorks 09. Mavericks so far seems to get good reviews. Hope the future of the Mac OS isn't turning it into an expensive accessory for an iPad. Balancing the cross platform makes sense but the Mac version shouldn't loose functionality to match the iOS version.

  2. Mondo the Magnificent
    Meh

    iWorks is something I've never used

    As a Mac user I am a little hypocritical and rest my laurels on MS Office for Mac.

    As for the Maverick upgrade, again I've played the waiting game and read articles like this with a smirk on my face knowing that I've not become a victim of the "first out of the starting blocks" upgraders

    I recall the 10.7 Lion issues that were reported when it was first released.. although the iMac on my desk runs Mountain Lion.

    Sometimes it pays to sit back and wait...

    Lastly, I still run OS X 10.6.8 on my MacBook because it just fucking works..

    1. Philip Lewis

      Me2 mondo ... but the performance improvements and price might nudge me from the highly robut 10.6.8 to Mavericks

      1. SuccessCase

        By price, you mean free. Mavericks will work on all Macs from 2007 onwards and is available free of charge.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The amazing MS trick repeated!

    Roll up, roll up! Get your fruity version of Win8 & Office ribbon here!

    Oh yes it sucks, but feel the cross-platform benefits! What, you mean there are none?

  4. Mike Bell

    Yes, lots of annoyed Pro users at the moment.

    Mind you, Apple left the old applications in place if you did an upgrade, so you can carry on using those if you prefer. Might let off a bit of steam.

  5. Longrod_von_Hugendong
    Unhappy

    I am an Apple fan...

    But i feel Tim Cook is slowly destroying what was a marvellous thing of beauty.

    Maps - crap

    iOS 7 - WTF was Johnny doing / thinking? Its got some great features, but i really want my old interface back, or at least something far more pretty, it now looks like Windozes phone 7 has humped iOS 5.

    iWorks - dumbed down

    Steve would not have let this happen, i just hope things get much better - but i don't think they will be getting better. Sadly there is only 1 Steve Jobs, and looks like no one else at Apple can fill his shoes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      Not sure if it's a Cookie monster decision or not, but the new Macbook Pros are almost iPad in construction. Virtually nothing can be upgraded and the cost has gone up even further.

      1. ThomH Silver badge

        Re: I am an Apple fan... (@AC)

        The new Macbook Pros are cheaper than the old. The 15" isn't a like-for-like comparison because the new entry level omits the discrete GPU and the old didn't, but last year's 13" was $1,499 at the time of discontinuation and the new is $1,299. That's a bit more than 13% cheaper.

        I also think we're already several years past the point where people who like to upgrade their computers would consider a Mac?

        1. Greg J Preece

          Re: I am an Apple fan... (@AC)

          I also think we're already several years past the point where people who like to upgrade their computers would consider a Mac?

          I dunno. There's a difference between laptops not being that upgradeable, and not even being able to jam more RAM into it. With the new Macbooks you can't easily replace anything. Custom hard drive, RAM soldered to the motherboard (seriously Apple, piss off), etc. I'm typing on a Macbook Pro right now, and the first thing I did when I got it was shove 16GB of RAM into it. Apple were going to charge me 300 quid for an upgrade that cost me 100 quid, so I did it myself. Bollocks to the new Pros - this one's already had two hardware failures that I fixed for $100, and replacing those parts in the new ones would have cost me thousands.

          1. izntmac

            Re: I am an Apple fan... (@AC)

            I agree. i've been an Apple fan for years but how easily new Mac laptops can be serviced is horrible. They should just have "No Serviceable Parts Inside. Throw it Away and Buy A New One!"

    2. WhoaWhoa

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      "But i feel Tim Cook is slowly destroying what was a marvellous thing of beauty."

      Actually, it was a computer. Just a computer.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: I am an Apple fan...

        > Actually, it was a computer. Just a computer.

        gb2 The Telegraph

    3. Greg J Preece

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      Steve would not have let this happen

      Yes he would. Wasn't slowly turning OSX into iOS one of his master plans in the first place?

      1. P. Lee

        Re: I am an Apple fan...

        >> Steve would not have let this happen

        >Yes he would. Wasn't slowly turning OSX into iOS one of his master plans in the first place?

        I doubt it. The thing Apple got right was that you can't stick a keyboard/mouse interface on a phone, something MS has been trying (and failing) to do for ages. If they have forgotten that lesson, their design prowess is shallower than I thought.

        Having said that, I'm sure they dream of the day they might return to proprietary silicon, so moving OSX towards ARM via iOS shouldn't be off the cards.

        1. Greg J Preece

          Re: I am an Apple fan...

          I doubt it. The thing Apple got right was that you can't stick a keyboard/mouse interface on a phone, something MS has been trying (and failing) to do for ages. If they have forgotten that lesson, their design prowess is shallower than I thought.

          It was 2011 when Lion started the conversion of OSX into iOS, with its pointless Launchpad crap and the ditching of Rosetta (which is fair enough in a way, but was still part of the strategy). Jobs was still around then, just about, and I don't doubt for a second that it was his idea.

        2. WhoaWhoa

          Re: I am an Apple fan...

          "The thing Apple got right was that you can't stick a keyboard/mouse interface on a phone, something MS has been trying (and failing) to do for ages. If they have forgotten that lesson, their design prowess is shallower than I thought."

          The thing that Apple got right was spotting that you can fool some of the people all of the time.

    4. Nathan 13

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      Just spat my drink all over my screen. Windows phone 7 has humped iOS 5 LOLOLOL

    5. Fluffy Bunny
      Pint

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      Re: "Steve would not have let this happen...", actually my reading os Steve is that the great god would have punished everybody severely for posting anything so negative. Then he would have punished his own people for letting it be posted. Steve would have cut even more features and told you to like the new cleaner user interface that didn't let features get in the way of how pretty it is.

    6. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: I am an Apple fan...

      Of course Steve let it happen. iLife went dumb on his watch, he was probably dipping his toe in the water to test.

    7. gkroog
      Joke

      "there IS only one Steve Jobs"?!

      He's back from BEYOND THE GRAAAVE?! At least he'll only go after shiny braaaiiinsss...

  6. Zippy's Sausage Factory
    Trollface

    Makes me glad I'm a Libre Office fan :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "fan"

      Some of us are users. Though I do like it and Koffice/Calligra, it's just that I'm not a fanatic of anything much.

  7. Anthony Hegedus Silver badge

    part of the long-term strategy I'd imagine

    This will serve to lessen the appeal of Macs to die-hard Mac fans. Making the software free and including it with new Macs would appeal to a PC user who might be thinking of buying a Mac this time round, who generally would only use the word processor to write a letter to the bank or make a shopping list.

    But I fear Apple's long-term strategy doesn't really include Macs at all. By dumbing them down and upping the ante on their now faster and faster ipads, there'll be little need for Macs at all.

    1. WhoaWhoa

      Re: part of the long-term strategy I'd imagine

      "Making the software free and including it with new Macs would appeal to a PC user who might be thinking of buying a Mac this time round, who generally would only use the word processor to write a letter to the bank or make a shopping list."

      To be brutally honest, the sort of user who "generally would only use the word processor to write a letter to the bank or make a shopping list" doesn't need a (n IBM-compatible) PC or a Mac. They would be best served by a pen and paper - more reliable, more portable and faster boot time. If they really feel the 'need' to use a computer something like an Amstrad PCW512 would be more than ample for their needs. Why, if they ever aspired to novel writing it would still serve them well.

      But you're right to recognise that the majority of computer users may be really, mostly, shopping list writers.

      1. Indolent Wretch

        Re: part of the long-term strategy I'd imagine

        I dunno about that. Although I think the problem here is likening "a letter to the bank" with "a shopping list", what sort of freakishly nonsensical comparison is that? A letter to the bank is something I need legible, dated, addressed and I almost certainly want a permanent copy of, a shopping list is a totally throw away item that needs only be legible to myself.

        The sort of user who "generally would use the word processor to write a letter to the bank" is me. A developer of 30 years experience and the (unfortunate) go to top-level technical guy of my circle of friends. Why else would I use a word processor at home? But trust me I need a PC. Because believe it or not, both I, and people of a less technical persuasion, do more than run a word processor on their box. But yes, including a halfway competent and free one that comes with the OS is a nice thing that gives people value.

        Now the sort of user who "generally would use the word processor to write a shopping list" is who? Do they exist? Really? You type a new document and print it? for a shopping list? Are you sure they exist?

        1. WhoaWhoa

          Re: part of the long-term strategy I'd imagine

          "But yes, including a halfway competent and free one that comes with the OS is a nice thing that gives people value."

          In the same way that "value" is given when something "free" is added to anything that has been vastly marked up in the first place.

          There are surprisingly many who are persuaded by such marketing deception that targets the hard-of-thinking.

  8. lglethal Silver badge
    Facepalm

    I never really understand these companies...

    I'm sure in the management meeting it sounded like a great idea to make all the programs the same across all products - tablets, laptops and desktops. "Only one version needed for everything? Think of the savings we can make when we dont need different product teams!"

    Still surely someone in engineering must have pointed out that it doesnt really work that way, and that all you will do is dumbdown the product (which will annoy the high end users), introduce an interface thats clunky (which will annoy everyone), and instigate a rash of bad press (which will hurt the bottom line).

    But then again, when has management ever listened to common sense when the big dollar signs are floating in front of their eyes?

    1. bluest.one

      Re: I never really understand these companies...

      Looks like Apple have contracted the same thing that Microsoft caught while they were designing Windows 8: in an attempt to "harmonise" platforms, make the non-touch desktop version worse.

      When can we get a vaccine for this disease?

      1. JohnG

        Re: I never really understand these companies...

        "Looks like Apple have contracted the same thing that Microsoft caught while they were designing Windows 8: in an attempt to "harmonise" platforms..."

        I don't think there have been armies of users clamouring for the amalgamation of desktop and tablet O/S and applications. MS and Apple both seem to have decided that their users must be herded down this path.

  9. Tim Worstal

    Makes the old mantra seem truer than ever

    Never, ever, upgrade to version x.0 of anything at all.

    1. channel extended

      Re: Makes the old mantra seem truer than ever

      I upgraded from Debian 6.1 to 7.0 and it worked fine. Must that 'stable' thing.

      1. P. Lee

        Re: Makes the old mantra seem truer than ever

        I like the bleeding edge.

        MythTV - now at v0.27

        But yes, when there are commercial factors at play, you don't jump in. I think it must be the casino effect of lit buttons/screen. When a button comes up which says, "press me to get stuff" people do so without thinking.

      2. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Makes the old mantra seem truer than ever

        Because you didn't try to install it in VMWare Workstation: it's VMWare video driver package is buggy and disables video acceleration. It was know since September 2012, but because the "stable" release was already frozen, the patch didn't get into it. When "stable" means "stable bugs"...

  10. Ilsa Loving

    Wait, people use iWork?

    People use iWork? I took one look at iWork a long time ago and with the exception of Keynote, I poo-poo'ed iWork almost immediately. Numbers looks like it's having an identity crisis, unable to decide if it's a spreadsheet or a presentation tool. Pages, while ok for a word processor, uses a stupid file format (actually a folder with multiple files inside, abstracted into a single object by OSX) that makes it impossible to email unless you use Mac Mail, or zip the thing up.

    Kinda sad that stuff has been stripped from Keynote, though. It would be nice if Apple expanded it's repertoire of shapes and object styling.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Wait, people use iWork?

      "actually a folder with multiple files inside, abstracted into a single object by OSX"

      Actually that is very good file format in systems which have no internal structure to "files", but it should really behave like a single "package" (like the OpenOffice files, which are actually jar files, which are actually zip files of a file tree)

      1. dougal83

        Re: Wait, people use iWork?

        The open document format was almost followed by microsoft... at least you can rename .docx to .zip and it will open as you mention.

      2. P. Lee

        Re: Wait, people use iWork?

        I'd far prefer a .tar than a .zip.

        With tar, you can see what is inside the file easily, search for text etc. Compressing obscures the data and creates an application silo of obscurity.

      3. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Wait, people use iWork?

        "Actually that is very good file format in systems which have no internal structure"

        Only if you're a developer who can't code a file format which can keep different "structures" inside. After all WordStar *developer* did it on 8086 machines with a few kB of RAM.... it shoudn't be so difficult for developers working for the Mighty Apple - but maybe Apple prefers to spend more money building futuristic HQ buildings than paying good OSX developers....

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wait, people use iWork?

      iWork a long time ago is not the same as iWork just before this 'upgrade'

      It has replaced Office on 4 machines in this household.

      The only thing we can't do is us the industrial sized spreadsheets that Excel can use.

      But then, in this house we don't need to.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The general view is that the post-Mavericks v4.3 iWork software suite upgrade has been a disaster for Mac users and the Cupertino fruit farm has f**ked up.

    Apple fucked something up... no that can't be right, shirley.

    1. ItsNotMe
      Flame

      @ obnoxiousGit

      Hey...I thought I told you NEVER to call me Shirley!

    2. WhoaWhoa

      "Apple fucked something up... no that can't be right, shirley."

      Apple always has f***ed stuff up, same as everyone else. What's different is that the recently expanded user based, courtesy of iThings, now includes a higher proportion of people who know that a piece of shit splaying out from the iFan is just that and not a little shower of magic fairy feathers worth inflated dollars by virtue of their magic fairy featheredness.

      iShit was always mixed in with the good stuff, same as for all technology.

  12. All names Taken
    Paris Hilton

    I do wonder sometimes and try to understand why software people make so many changes and partly concluded that it must mean additional coding hours. So on a short-term contractual basis anything that ups the total hours also ups the total income = very good for the coders?

    Sidebar? (I much prefer pallets - remember them? Even better still: dockable pallets - uh-ha baby )

    [doo doo doo di-de doo doo]

    And the way all things Apple and all things SM are going I think I may just prattle about in android for a while - it also seems cheaper in case they wish to wreck things there too no?

    1. Mephistro
      Thumb Up

      "and all things SM are going "

      That would be SadoMasosoft. It describes the company's spirit better than the actual name. :0)

      Offtopic: And thank you, ElReg, for the 'edit' button!.

    2. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge
      Joke

      What do you put on those pallets?

  13. Al fazed

    They have done this before, haven't they ?

    Didn't Macs once come with Adobe PhotoShop and some other neat software which was dropped unceremoniously from subsequent OS updates.

    Supposedly, iPhoto and iMovie are still available to me after the upgrade to Mavericks, but this is another loads of old bollox, the App Store has been downloading and installing them back again without managing to pull it off. They no longer work on this Mac Book Pro and in the process I had to sign in to the App Store about a dozen times. Oh yeah, and reboot the machine a couple of times too many.

    Just confirms everything I ever thought about Apple. There's very little to choose between Micorsoft and Apple as manufacturers of iTech tat. "Could do better", is what appeared on my school reports, even when I was top of the class.

    1. MonkeyCee

      Re: They have done this before, haven't they ?

      "There's very little to choose between Micorsoft and Apple as manufacturers of iTech tat."

      MS make computers now? I hear there tablets where a great success, so obviously laptops and desktops next.

      And yes, think like a meercat. Never be the first one out of the burrow, or a x.0 user as the case may be :)

      1. Al fazed
        Happy

        Re: They have done this before, haven't they ?

        Supporting the local community with their IT issues, as I do - I find it advantageous to have "been there and done that" before they ask for my help. Anyway, I just like breaking and fixing stuff and these devices give me plenty to pplay with !

  14. knarf

    Well it is FREE

    The next upgrade won't be though

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Well it is FREE

      All those features you knew and loved in your paid-for version of iWorks and have been automagically updated away to the the dumbed-down free version will soon be available in the iWork Pro edition (also available from your App Store at a modest price).

    2. P. Lee

      Re: Well it is FREE

      More to the point, when your soldered on flash storage fails, it won't seem so free.

  15. Grifter

    Curious

    I thought reduction of choice was a feature among the apples. Go figure.

  16. simon gardener

    A little confusion here - not as bad as it initially seems

    Don't panic !

    When your mac updates to the new iWork apps, it leaves the previous versions in place. So, they're not gone and if you found them useful a few days ago then nothings changed, they are just as useful and fully functioned as they were.

    What has just happened? Well it looks like Apple has stripped back functionality so that the iOS, mac and the web versions of the iWork apps are 100% compatible.

    I'd be surprised if they didn't start adding back in features to the mac version and bring those feature to the iOS and web version in lock step. It'll take time, but i imagine it'll slowly happen.

    If it doesn't, they didn't remove the previous version

    The one thing to watch out for is the new version will probably update the file format and make it impossible for the old version to open it.

    However, if you are on a Mac, you should be using time machine and letting that back everything up so any old versions of files are accessibly anyway.

    All this fuss, anyone would think this was FinalCutProGate!

    1. Mike Richards Silver badge

      Re: A little confusion here - not as bad as it initially seems

      Open an existing 2009 document in the new iWork suite and it immediately saves the document in the new format - using the same filename. Your old file is gone and won't open in 2009. You can't go back without resorting to a Time Machine backup, and exporting from 2013 to 2009 is very hit and miss if you have anything more than a basic project.

      And I'm sorry, saying we had to downgrade the software to give the other versions a chance to catch up is a pretty poor one for one of the world's largest IT companies.

      1. WhoaWhoa

        Re: A little confusion here - not as bad as it initially seems

        "And I'm sorry, saying we had to downgrade the software to give the other versions a chance to catch up is a pretty poor one for one of the world's largest IT companies."

        Yes.

        Not so surprising when you see them as primarily a consumer gadget company, though.

    2. WhoaWhoa

      Re: A little confusion here - not as bad as it initially seems

      "What has just happened? Well it looks like Apple has stripped back functionality so that the iOS, mac and the web versions of the iWork apps are 100% compatible."

      Looking forward to the day when they launch the technology that lets them upgrade iMacs (at no cost) by removing the keyboard and mouse, in the interests of sleek minimalist design and 100% compatibility.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Vae victis!

    Those who ignore the concept of digital freedom are condemned to suffer and to pay in order to be abused.

    I guess a Nelson Muntz Ha-Ha would be a good indication of my empathy level.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So, another bloody idiot will have to go

    I've been on the pointy end of this kind of thinking, from a former employer who knew best when it came to what the ends users want. It never ends well for the software company! I wonder who will be following Scott Forstall out of the door?

    1. WhoaWhoa

      Re: So, another bloody idiot will have to go

      "I wonder who will be following Scott Forstall out of the door?"

      "Jony" Ive? (Or "I've", as the iPad would have it).

      Being in charge of putting rounded corners on software will end in tears, mark my words.

  19. IAmTheMillipede

    Apple has been dumbing down technology so cats and grandmothers can use it for years now.

    I for one applaud their commitment to the lowest common denominator. Its a refreshing break from the tired old approach of increasingly powerful products. Some people (and pets!) just want to be dumb and happy, dammit. If Apple could find a way to also profitably encourage obesity they would have the whole thing sorted for us.

  20. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    The reduction in color choice seems a bit bizarre given the hoo-hah over the Retina Display of the iPad.

    I thought the whole point was to be able to see colors better.

    1. IAmTheMillipede

      Re: Bah!

      To be fair, the colors that you are now allowed are very, very detailed.

      1. WhoaWhoa

        Re: Bah!

        "To be fair, the colors that you are now allowed are very, very detailed."

        And beautiful. I've never seen such beautiful colours before!

        Http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1K6fa4Y3DI

    2. majorursa

      Re: Bah!

      Even the revered designers at Apple thought 120 colors was a bit much for spreadsheet highlights

  21. Awil Onmearse

    I'm getting uneasy

    They'll pry 10.6.8 out of my cold, dead hands.... But now the latest versions of Netbeans require Java 7 and you have to hack the installer to get it installed at all. Works just dandy of course.

    Unless they kill this convergent interface fuckwittery, the next upgrade will be to Mint.

    1. Chris 3

      Re: I'm getting uneasy

      I left my wife's machine on 10.6.8 but I have to say this is the first upgrade since then that has made me tempted to upgrade it. 10.9 is a really nice OS and there really isn't much convergent UI going on.

    2. Greg J Preece

      Re: I'm getting uneasy

      They'll pry 10.6.8 out of my cold, dead hands.... But now the latest versions of Netbeans require Java 7 and you have to hack the installer to get it installed at all. Works just dandy of course.

      Yeah, that caught me off guard, but then I remembered I was on Kubuntu. One quick add-apt-repository later and I was running Netbeans 7.4 :-) Haven't bothered upgrading the OSX partition yet for exactly this reason, along with all the other reasons listed in the comment thread above.

    3. WhoaWhoa

      Re: I'm getting uneasy

      "They'll pry 10.6.8 out of my cold, dead hands...."

      Or gaze at the formalin preserved corpse, still clutching, in the Apple Users Museum of Curiosities. ;-)

  22. Mage Silver badge

    Next

    is not "Next" Workstation

    but end of Macs.

    As soon as there is a bigger iPad with keyboard cover selling well the Macs will be Dumped. Seen a new Apple Server lately?

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This article is an indication of peak Register. 'Writers' like Mellor are systematically ruining what was once a gret IT institution. It's long just been a parody of itself.

    1. WhoaWhoa

      "It's long just been a parody of itself."

      Whilst that claim might superficially appear to trip rather smoothly off the iPen I fear it is flirting dangerously with the Dark Side of Russell's Paradox.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      "Everything dies, Mr Mulder!"

    3. dougal83

      lol. QQ Regtard. People like you crying make comments amusing.

  24. DavidJBradshaw

    People seem to be forgetting that Apple is firstly a hardware company and that software, especially free software, role is to drive hardware sales.

    Having triple play version parity is important over everything else for most people that have moved to Google Docs and Apple is no doubt concerned that Google Docs drives Android sales.

    So forget comparing iWorks with MS Office, that as Steve Jobs use to say, isn't where the 'puck' is headed.

    If the old version has some feature you can't live without, carry on using the old version. Me I might just make the jump from Google Docs and I'm delighted to have a cloud office platform that at last works on my iPad.

    1. FrankAlphaXII

      Free as in beer maybe. There isn't much free as in freedom in regard to Apple.

    2. JEDIDIAH
      Linux

      Raise the other boats, don't sink them.

      If you want to have compatibility across a broad range of hardware, then the solution is to make the inferior platforms less inferior rather than gutting the ones that are better. The idea that MacOS must be gutted to accomodate tablets is precisely the kind of nonsense that non-rube users worry about.

  25. Zorbec le Gras
    Alert

    Upgraded the family iMac (2.8 GHz Core2duo) - everything fine, until I tried to upgrade iPhoto and iMovie (as suggested by the Store application itself). Surprise surprise, iMovie won't download, as App Store reports the iMac's graphics card (ATI Radeon HD 2600 PRO) isn't supported.

    Then why even offer to upgrade iMovie in App Store, if it's not supported on this particular iMac? Surely the App Store could filter out any apps which are not supported?

    Perish the thought Apple would actually want to rub my face into the fact that this iMac, a perfectly respectable 5yr old machine, has actually taken its first step into obsolescence... Will uninstalling iMovie altogether be the only way to stop seeing an upgrade notification for this app henceforward?!?

    1. WhoaWhoa

      "Upgraded the family iMac (2.8 GHz Core2duo) - everything fine, until I tried to upgrade iPhoto and iMovie..."

      Sorry for the lack of sympathy, but anyone with a "family iMac (2.8 GHz Core2duo)" was destined to confront the reality of computers one day. Shiny cases and big price tags can only hide the truth for so long.

      1. P. Lee

        Actually a c2d is more than adequate for a "family computer." I have a 2009 2.6Ghz 24" imac (with a dvd drive!) which runs email with 10k+ messages, web, MS Office, skype, video, voip, ebook server etc with no problems at all.

        I did upgrade the RAM to 8G recently (/me thumbs nose at newer mac owners...) which made things run quite a bit better and the nvidia 9400 will never be for 3d games, but it is almost silent and a pleasure to use with snow leopard. I've got a network server running debian so I probably won't bother upgrading the disk (I rarely reboot the thing), but an SSD is an option. Perhaps it was the last of the decent "all-in-ones".

        I don't normally upgrade critical machines unless I need to. That makes life more pleasant and things tick along just fine.

        1. Harman Mogul

          Same boat, still afloat

      2. Zorbec le Gras

        @WhoaWhoa: please enlighten me

        Not sure what your point is... but then perhaps I didn't make my point clear: what I find irritating is not that Apple would develop iMovie beyond the point that I can use it on a particular configuration; it's annoying to me and other users, but it's Apple's right to do so, and expecting them to keep software compatible with older and older specs would be silly. What does annoy me is that App Store is "unable" to filter out updates that aren't supported on my iMac - that's all.

        As for the iMac itself - yes it's still a good looking piece of equipment, which doesn't look out of place in a living room; if that makes me prefer "shiny" to a desktop PC, then I'm guilty! :-)

        "Big price tag" - wouldn't know about that, bought that iMac second hand in 2012 - best purchase I ever did on eBay! As P.Lee remarked, these Core2duo iMacs (especially 24") are very nice machines - hardware is upgradable (merci iFixit :-), easiest possible use for kids, screen is large and bright, CPU more than capable of running regular tasks: email, Web surfing, playing music and videos, photo and home video edits.

        As far as I'm concerned, that's enough "reality of computers" for me: job done, happy with the price paid. What's your story?

        1. EPurpl3

          Re: @WhoaWhoa: please enlighten me

          I have i7 from 2007, imagine that "reality of computers", works anything, not to mention the updates....

        2. WhoaWhoa

          Re: @WhoaWhoa: please enlighten me

          '"Big price tag" - wouldn't know about that, bought that iMac second hand in 2012 - best purchase I ever did on eBay!

          ...

          As far as I'm concerned, that's enough "reality of computers" for me: job done, happy with the price paid. What's your story?'

          Having read your description, my story is that I might have a look at the box on eBay, which wouldn't have crossed my mind before. So, kudos for your description.

          It's unlikely I'll buy, because I've always been aware that this year's £1,000 (or whatever) computer is next year's forgotten range and that the cheapest computer available is so many orders of magnitude more powerful than the ones on which I had my first assembler dabblings that I haven't bought one for years as I've always found free skip-rescues more than up to everything I need (though choice of OS is important to me and particular upgrades are fine). And I'm conscious of the other things I can do for the price of a (temporarily) high-end box (or even an upper-middle-end iMac :-) ).

          And I have an aversion to what might have blinginess as part of its perceived value. ;-)

          (I know that some claim to see beauty, rather than bling, in certain products. Fair enough. It's just quite different from my concept of beauty).

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It's not just Apple, but they appear to be the worst.

      False redundancy is what it's all about. Everybody does it, from car parts, ink cartridges, Windows DirectX 10, chip sockets. etc. They all have this fake, 'Oh it won't work on the 'old' system, you'll have to upgrade. It's basically a lie.

    3. EPurpl3

      Haha, get a PC

      ...yea, I know, who would've thought years ago that this would have been a good advice today.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yippee for Office!

    I've always used it and always will. All of this "Ribbon" bullshit is just that. Thick of fck users not having a clue.

    MS/office have always been good for me and I never have problems.

    Apple is and always will be just the dross for the dross.

  27. MissingSecurity
    Trollface

    You know...

    ...thinking back, iphone users were defending the lack of features on its earlier releases. I guess Apple can't win them all, I mean they just tried to give them what they wanted.

  28. poopypants

    Finger painters

    OPINION:

    This is what happens when you dumb down your software to cater to tablet loving finger painters.

    Both MS and Apple seem to be regressing to kindergarten style interfaces, which although pretty and distracting are not very productive.

    1. Zot

      Re: Finger painters

      I love the term 'Finger Painters,' It should be adopted by The Reg immediately!

      :D

      1. Rukario
        Thumb Up

        Re: Finger painters

        > I love the term 'Finger Painters,' It should be adopted by The Reg immediately!

        Seconded!

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "There is no share-holder value in the professional market"

    ...said someone at Apple - probably.

    They are also systematically destroying the pro-audio market, having removed 32 bit plug-ins and creating a sand-boxed wall around software like Logic. Which will inevitable mean an Apple pay-wall around everything to come.

    They are stretching their suited arms out and around everything and dragging back all they can from third party developers - like some hideous Jerald Scarfe animation, grinning with black sunken eyes and money piles shining gold light in their faces - probably. ; )

    Joyous, clearly.

  30. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Alan W. Rateliff, II
      Paris Hilton

      Re: If they keep this up...

      We can still find "TI Writer" and "Microsoft Multi-Plan for the TI" on eBay.

  31. MattEvansC3

    So is this the iWorks Toaster and Fridge edition?

    http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/1450608

    1. WhoaWhoa

      'So is this the iWorks Toaster and Fridge edition?

      http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/1450608'

      Article finishes...

      'The newly-birthed Twitter account @FridgeToaster got what might be the final word on the matter: "Hey, Tim Cook: Bite my shiny metal ass," it tweeted'.

  32. Someone Else Silver badge
    FAIL

    So...

    ...which expatriate MS execs did Apple hire?

  33. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    >>> Steve would not have let this happen

    >>Yes he would. Wasn't slowly turning OSX into iOS one of his master plans in the first place?

    >I doubt it. The thing Apple got right was that you can't stick a keyboard/mouse interface on a phone, >something MS has been trying (and failing) to do for ages. If they have forgotten that lesson, their design >prowess is shallower than I thought.

    A) As bad as Microsoft's phone efforts have done in the market, I've never seen any indication of them trying to stick a keyboard and mouse interface onto one. Windows CE sure had a start menu, but that was like 10 years ago and it actually sold decently until it became technologically obsolete.

    B) You got it backwards -- the plan was theoretically to further dumb down the Mac desktop and apps to match the capabilities of the tablet. (I'm sure that's not how proponents would put it...but I'm not one!) Signs of it, apps like the ones in this article, where they rip out loads of functionality to streamline the interface, and the app store.

    It's by no means just Apple though -- see Microsoft trying to force a tablet interface onto people's desktops (I say "trying to" because of how low sales are of Win8... luckily for them at least, Windows 8.1 is supposed to allow booting straight to the real desktop instead of having to tab over into it or whatever.) And see Mark Shuttlesworth at Canonical, switching Ubuntu's default interface to the awful Unity interface (another tablet interface being stuck onto PCs... luckily, I can install gnome classic and pretend Unity never existed.)

  34. Thomas Allen

    Abandoning the Mouse

    Apple brought the mouse into the world, and Apple is taking it out!

    They are not dumbing down the software, they are removing those functions which cannot be done on the touch screen. You can't hover, you can't multiple select, etc with finger painting tools, you need a mouse. (double-tap is not catching on). So this is the end of the mouse, and only touch functions will be allowed in Apple software.

    (Yes I know the mouse is from Xerox originally, but Apple commercialized it.)

    1. LDS Silver badge

      Re: Abandoning the Mouse

      Maybe - and if your Mac has no touch device what to you do? A mouse allows for a far more precise interaction - only a digitizer could be more precise (and offer features like pressure and inclination sensitivity) - for many tasks you can't replace a mouse with a finger. Touch is ok when you have not a suitable surface for a mouse - but unless Apple redesign your fingers (and it could be tempted), there's little it can do to improve precision.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well, it seems to me that whilst you've been using the swings and roundabouts, Apple have changed the size of the sandbox.

    1. WhoaWhoa

      "Well, it seems to me that whilst you've been using the swings and roundabouts, Apple have changed the size of the sandbox."

      Can't quite unpick the children's playground metaphors, but understand why that setting is appropriate.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Probably just a move towards product convergence

    Amazing how many people are jumping to the conclusion that Apple has dumbed down their products deliberately to cater to their low-IQ user base, or just to spite their higher-requirements users.

    As a software developer who works at a software company (surely I can't be the only one here?) my first thought when I see that functionality has been "removed" is that part of the product has been rewritten/reworked **for some reason**.

    In this case, Apple was probably duplicating a lot of effort by having different versions of the iWork apps for iOS and OS X and they probably did a review to see where they could share more code. So all of the missing functionality is probably a result of features being rewritten or being copied from the other version. I would expect that any important missing features will be added back in future versions, and now that (I assume) more code is shared, those future versions will come out sooner and be more stable than they otherwise would. So please stop with the unnecessary angst and hand-wringing.

    1. LDS Silver badge

      Re: Probably just a move towards product convergence

      No, as a software developer that manges a development group, I would not release a version with features removed - even if I'm merging two different branches of code into a single one. I would put the "legacy" app in maintenance mode while working on the new one, and release the latter only when it's ready and feature complete - at least to match the "old" one. Customers don't like to lose functionalities they're used to.

      Apple doesn't look a small company that cannot work this way and lacks money to pay developers.

      Maybe Apple will give away for "free" a basic iWorks and then charge for a feature complete one, or just cut development costs because now it's free and thereby it's just a cost. After all What You Get Is What You Pay For.

      Anyway it's always funny how here Apple never does something wrong but has always a Great Hidden Plan... here probably someone ranted against MS even when it removed Clippy....

  37. busycoder99
    Megaphone

    Might be a good time for all those pissed off users to check out ownCloud documents, the beta of which just came out today. Now that's what I call perfect timing.

    http://blog.karlitschek.de/2013/10/welcome-owncloud-documents.html

  38. Phil Hare 2
    Thumb Up

    This is brilliant

    I absolutely love the new age of Apple Getting Stuff Wrong. How long before we start talking in terms of JE and AJ (Jobsian Era and After Jobs)?

    And yes, I did think of suggesting "Before Jobs", but come on...

  39. Gaius Maximus

    Another one bites the dust

    So, Apple, too, now joins Ubuntu, Gnome, KDE, and Microsoft in the one-size-fits-all madness sweeping the globe that favours the hardly usable toy phablets' touchiness over the truly productive desktops' and laptops' keyboards.

    The backlash has already begun, though. Mint with Mate or Cinnamon has already replaced Ubuntu as the number 1 Linux, while Mark Shuttleworth insults his user-base for refusing to slavishly adore everything he chooses for them. Apple's sales and share prices have fallen in light of his former lover's revelations about his lack of humanity, and this 'upgrade' is hardly going to help that downward slide. Microsoft is already seeing the light, and offering 8.1, but, just as with previous course corrections (after DOS 4.0, Windows ME, and Vista), this correction, too, will be a half-hearted, token effort meant to dupe the unwary into just giving up and using 'Metro' anyway.

    And, of course, we'll now hear from a few evangelists and/or true-believers telling me not to 'speak for everyone' (as if I have), or to just 'stop being such a Luddite and get with the times' (which has pretty much defined my career as a programmer, system architect, instructor, and author) (so, no, I'm no Luddite), and/or that if I'd just give it a try, I really would like it. (Sorry. Tried 'em all. A lot. Hated 'em all. They all hinder rather than help pretty much everything but light system administration and light text-editing/coding.) (In other words, mucking about.), or from someone who just really likes the new UIs. Well, to each his own. But, as I said, Mint has suddenly dethroned Ubuntu, and Microsoft is already trying to defuse the rebellion against Metro, so it looks like you're in the minority pretty much everywhere.

    1. Philip Lewis

      Re: Another one bites the dust

      "Apple's sales and share prices have fallen in light of his former lover's revelations about his lack of humanity, and this 'upgrade' is hardly going to help that downward slide. "

      Can you cite some reference to reality that supports this contention?

This topic is closed for new posts.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021