news of 2005-03-28

Easter Monday: Finder Grudge

When Mac OS X 10.0 arrived, I heard many OS 9 using folks say that handling OS X sucked. I told them to try and adapt, because mainly it was a matter of how 'specialised' their brains were coming from a long-years experience in classic Mac OS.
Over the years, we've even got labels back, although they're not as user-friendly as they once were. We've got spring-loaded folders back, but they just never felt as 'right' as in OS 9, mainly because you're always a bit surprised of how a window that springs open will look. Metal, Aqua? Will it have icon view, list or column view? It's always a surprise, which totally gets in the way. So compared to OS 9's Finder, the current Mac OS X Finder in Panther is still "just not good". It sucks. But Tiger is coming, right? Yeah, but it's the Panther Finder all over again. Sure, it has Spotlight search, which is incredibly cool and will effect how we all work with the Finder.

But the damage done when moving from OS 9 to OS X isn't cured. And it probably won't ever be. We might see Apple redo the Finder completely in 10.5 or 11.0, and maybe there will be some things in that mythical Finder-to-come that remind us of how wonderful to work with OS 9's Finder was. But now, more than four years after I've used OS 9's Finder the last time for real work, I have to admit that someone at Apple (or more likely: more than one person at Apple) just likes the new Finder too much. I just wish they'd openly state what's intended. Are we slowly moving to a useable Finder? Will its evolution move us over to a new paradigm that actually works better than OS 9's Finder? And if so: Why the incredibly slow speed at this development?

So here's my real wish for Mac OS X 10.5: Concentrate on the Finder. Spotlight's cool, Dashboard's cool, Automator is cool and Exposé's cool, too. But they're all around the Finder. Focus on the Finder itself next time, Apple. Please.

[ written by fryke™ on 2005-03-28 at 12:29 CET ]
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