How To Build A Better Mac OS X

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I’m a Mac OS X, Linux and Windows power user. I’ve been using Mac as my primary machine since PowerMac 6100AV, my first portable was a-taiwanese Compal 386sx-16, and my beloved portable was IBM ThinkPad Butterfly 701c running SLS Linux with 0.92 kernel (long before Slackware exist). I bought tenths IBM ThinkPads since.

While recently I’m doing my work solely on my new PowerBook G4 15.2″ 1.67GHz, I know what I missed between the three platforms. So here’s the suggestion list to make a Mac OS X an even irristable experience.

1. Browser. When it comes to browsing, I deemly depends on Camino. While Firefox is there (I even tried community build with G4 optimised Firefox), but I just feel Camino is right! Safari with its KHTML-rendering engine just don’t cut it. No tab browsing (correction: Safari does Tab Browsing, it just hidden under Preferences setting), sometimes lack of rendering site properly all sudden become out of my opt.

While Camino is not boast latest Firefox/Gecko engine, so here’s my suggestion. Why not help Camino community to build a better browser and even add your own technology inside like Safari RSS. Or build Safari RSS engine with Gecko/KHTML dual engine? Can you do that? If not I guess Camino is an important tool to be adapt in the hybrid Mac OS X/Windows/Linux browsing experience.

2. Instant Messenger. While Apple iChat AV boast its cool feature when coupled with iSight, I got a major complain that it’s not compatible with Yahoo!Messenger (and I do have a harder time connecting iChat AV than other instant messengers). Yahoo lacks of attention in bringing its Yahoo!IM latest build to Mac community just make me sick of. With recent Mac mini and lots of Apple Mac OS X adoption Yahoo!Messenger as major player should aware of this! The 2.5.3 version on the Mac is way not comparable to the version 6.0 on Windows cousin. I missed the Picture Messege!!! 🙁

Thanks God there’s AdiumX. AdiumX is the best and the most jazzy GAIM variant on any platform! And yes it’s only available on the Mac OS X. But the problem with it is there’s no current support for video chat and audio conference. So why not help AdiumX to bring those features or at least make your own iChat AV compatible to Yahoo!IM protocols. As you said that the reason to bring iChat AV a Mac only application (just like iLife) is to provide a value to the Mac platform. But how many users ever heard of iChat AV? Since the majority of onliner will be a Windows user and they will surely never heard of it, and even Mac users complaining about its lack of major protocol adoption (iChat AV is only compatible with AOL). 🙁

3. IRC. Surely Ircle is the long time IRC application on the Mac for years. Since I’ve never using IRC before on the Mac on System 7-8x, and my first encountered was on Windows using mIRC, I found Ircle is too difficult to use for Windows convert. I try to adjust my experience, but it takes too much energy to adapt it. Recently I tried Colloquy which I can tell the best Mac IRC apps (it boast the true nature of Mac OS X environment), but the problem is the Colloquy is not stable. Crashed too much 🙁

Why don’t help this developer to build better IRC that have Mac natural interface?

4. MC. Yes the oldiest bloodiest Midnight Commander. I know that Apple concerns is for bringing the best GUI appication for the Mac OS X. But Apple should aware of the majority of geek who are willing to give a Mac a shot today. They (well I) need MC and can’t live without it. While I can always compile it from source and make it run on Mac OS X (I also gotta tell you the nature of Mac OS X that is not still a major *NIX environment can sometime cause you working harder than compiling for the rest of *NIX variant, Glib dependencies, pkg-config not found, hosts not found sometimes can be frustating for newbie UNIX user). So why don’t give the MC as default installed?

5. Optimization. While iLife has proven itself as a coolest application for end user, I rarely use it. It only works for demo only 😛 I turn on iDVD and show some demo for changing themes. That’s right. I rarely use iLife. What’s life? I don’t have life other than codes and blogs. My point is iLife now becoming Bloatware!! iPhoto for instance, most my id-mac community complaining about iPhoto 5 performance compare to iPhoto 4. It’s too bloated. While usually happy enough with written-in-C application like QCView (I usually compile myself to get -04 optimation), I found Apple lack of View as Thumbnail (like on Windows XP) just make my life harder. 🙁 Everything that I have to view, either I have go thru Preview or open it using iPhoto. The BloatedPhoto. Why hassled adding -04 and -faltivec optimation on your iPhoto 5? Adobe make the mistakes once too (Try compare Adobe Acrobat 6 and Acrobat 7 performance… Acrobat 7 would be a snap).

7. Bring more *NIX codes to the Mac. A lot of geeks are rely to the Mac as their portable machine. They depends their life in the *NIX applets, applications which usually doesn’t exist on Mac. I understand the Fink, the Opendarwin and Gentoo-OSX. Apple backup is on Opendarwin. Gentoo-OSX is the suckiest engine I’ve ever experience! (Helloo Gentoo!!!) I lost my 80GB backup files cause this Gentoo-OSX since its rename all my old OS 9 applications and document into “Unix Executable Application”… Suck!! I will never touch Gentoo-OSX again. Tough onetime I’m a Gentoo Linux devotee (Daniel Robbins fan to be exact), now I think I’ll stick with my Slack, Fedora, and Vector, OpenBSD, and OpenNA. I’m having my Ubuntu on the way.

8. Pango/Glib/GTK/ATK native support on Mac? I know that Mac OS X build on the top of Quartz. And Quartz does not rely on this library. Eventough Pango/Glib/GTK/ATK can be done via Fink, and emerging softwares written for GNOME, I wonder why not bundling this library to the Mac OS X?? Reason? Easier for newbie *NIX or Linux convert to try build small applications that usually a snap on Linux to build.

I guess that’s all for today, I got work to do… I’ll write more along the way. Rage on! And oh yeah, no built-in Mic for iBook G4 and Mac mini? Are you kidding me?? Skype is sky rocket today!!

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