Amelio Outlines Realistic Mac OS Strategy — In a move seen as simply bringing Apple’s official system update policies in line with current practice, Apple CEO Gilbert Amelio announced at Macworld Boston last week that Apple intends to deliver future enhancements to the Mac OS in a series of incremental updates rather than as large, monolithic packages. What does this mean for real people? First, it means Mac OS 8 won’t emerge from Apple fully-formed; instead, components will trickle out as Apple finalizes them, starting with components like Open Transport, OpenDoc, and QuickTime, along with Finder enhancement like multiple simultaneous copy operations and "docking" folder windows. This announcement also means developers won’t be receiving the long-delayed DR1 release of Mac OS 8, most recently promised for next month.
Although moving away from enormous system releases should allow Apple to deliver technologies to users more quickly, I hope this official commitment means Apple will show some leadership in clarifying the confusing morass of system software and component releases. We’ll know soon: the first incremental system update is scheduled for January 1997, with another release following in July 1997. [GD]