WWDC 2012

Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference kicked off today with a keynote presentation that featured a number of major announcements. I was particularly interested in:

  • New Macbook Pro: For years I have thought that my next computer would be a new desktop to replace my aging iMac. The release of this new Macbook Pro, however, has changed that. I am pretty sure that my next computer will be one of these paired with a Cinema Display. I think the combination of SSD drives and Thunderbolt will be able to handle any RAW files I throw at it.

  • Mountain Lion: $20 to upgrade. As a friend of mine said “pretty soon they’ll be paying us to upgrade.” I’ll start with the one negative of Mountain Lion from my perspective: it won’t run on my black Macbook. I bought my Macbook a few months before the Macbook’s went to the unibody design. It looks like Apple decided it was time to end support for Intel’s fairly pathetic integrated graphics. I’ve managed to get an extra year or two of life out of my laptop because of a SSD replacement, so I really cannot complain. With that caveat out of the way, I am excited for Mountain Lion. The two main things I’m looking forward to are iCloud integration and dictation. I’ve been using iCloud, particularly with iA Writer on Mac and iPad, and it seems to work even better than Dropbox for real time syncing of simple documents. I’m hoping that new iCloud features allow for a similar workflow with Pages documents. I’ve been wanting to try dictation for some time, but I haven’t wanted to pay the upfront cost for a Dragon product if I was not sure I would stick with it. I had been debating whether or not to pick up Dragon Express as an alternative. I am now glad I waited, since next month I’ll have dictation built right into my operating system.

  • iOS 6: iOS got some major updates. My fiancé was particularly excited that her new iPad will be getting Siri in the Fall. It’s not the same Siri that is currently on the 4S, either. It’s a new, improved Siri that includes improvements in areas likes sports stats and restaurant reservations. iOS 6 will also include a new Passbook application that is a storage place for all the frequent buyer cards, gift cards, travel tickets, etc…that we carry around. It has an API, so hopefully it develops a high level of ubiquity. Of course, the major feature upgrade in iOS 6 is the new Maps. iPhone will now include turn-by-turn navigation in their Maps application. Though Motion X has treated me well the past year, I fully anticipate that the new Apps will mean I do not renew my subscription to Motion X’s turn-by-turn service next year.

Summaries of the event are available from: David Pogue, Andy Ihnatko, TechHive, and Macworld.