The line between personal home computers and mobile components has been blurring for years. With the release Wednesday of Apple ’ s most recent operating system, called Mountain Lion, repositioning between these components has come to be more natural.
I ’ ve tested the new os, formally known as OS X version 10.8, for the past week. It introduces brand-new functions and it mirrors a number of beneficial characteristics first discovered in the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, such as seamless sharing with third-party networks, iCloud integration and dictation. But I encountered some difficulty with Twitter notifications and Calendar.
Apple ’ s Mountain Lion, which comes just a year after the launch of its previous os called Lion, combines elements from mobile, but still sustains a separation between the PC OS and the mobile OS. Later on this year Microsoft will certainly introduce Windows 8, its very first operating system that entirely merges the business ’ s tablet os with Windows.
Mountain Lion ’ s Facebook Share sheets let individuals immediately share content to Facebook.
For $ 20, one copy of Mountain Lion can be installed and utilized on all of the computers that you and your household very own. Beginning Wednesday, it ’ s offered exclusively as a digital download from Apple ’ s Mac App Shop. A lot of Macs got in mid-2007 or later on that run OS X variation 10.6.8 or later will have the ability to update.
There are over 200 new functions in Mountain Lion, so I focused on the ones that made the most significant impression on me. That listing features Messaging, which elegantly blends iMessage with other messaging on the COMPUTER; Notice Center, which washes up notices from various applications by organizing them in a solitary panel that moves out from the screen ’ s right side using a two-finger trackpad swipe; Dictation, which lets individuals speak anywhere they can kind; and integration with Facebook and Twitter, though Facebook won ’ t work till this fall via a software application update.
Messaging elegantly blends iMessage with other messaging on the COMPUTER.
I got completely addicted to Mountain Lion ’ s Share pieces, which appear whenever you ’ d expect to be able to share something. This includes Websites from Apple ’ s Safari Web browser, and items from Apple ’ s Notes program or photos that you prefer to deliver to good friends. Share slabs use fancyful animations to bring a paper clip, photo and text together on a little piece of virtual paper that gets whooshed off into the ether. Sharing works with a range of techniques, so you can be certain to reach anyone.
ICloud, Apple ’ s cloud service, is among the keys to Mountain Lion ’ s magic, and it works in the background to deliver the exact same data to applications on all of your made it easy for iOS gadgets. This lets you unwind and pay less attention to what you saved where, because it doesn ’ t actually matter. If you don ’ t own other Apple gadgets or don ’ t use iCloud, Mountain Lion won ’ t make fairly as much of an effect on you.
It ’ s also worth noting that Apple ’ s mobile operating system, called iOS, won ’ t be updated until this fall, suggesting a PC, iPhone, iPad or iPod touch ought to by then work more cohesively with Mountain Lion. I got an early look at Mountain Lion ’ s integration with Facebook, which is still in its “ beta, ” or test phase, and is currently only readily available to programmers.
Two of the coolest Mountain Lion features will only work with particular new Macintoshes: Power Nap and AirPlay Mirroring. Power Nap, which updates the PC as soon as an hour as the computer sleeps, only works on the MacBook Pro with Retina Display or MacBook Airs made after mid-2011. AirPlay Mirroring lets individuals feature whatever is on their Macintosh ’ s screen on an HDTV with a $ 99 Apple TV device plugged into it. AirPlay Mirroring just works with the second-generation or newer Apple TV and the iMac, Mac mini, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro made a minimum of as just recently as 2011.
The Notification Center washes up notices from various applications by organizing them in a single panel that moves out from the screen ’ s right side using a two-finger trackpad swipe.
I checked both of these characteristics on a MacBook Pro with Retina Display and they worked as promoted. My e-mail, software application updates and calendar alerts appeared just about immediately when I woke my COMPUTER, thanks to Power Nap. However it doesn ’ t update a home computer that ’ s asleep for less than an hour, which is often the situation for me since I take short, 30-minute breaks while I write. I utilized AirPlay Mirroring by clicking one button on my MacBook Pro with Retina Display and seeing a YouTube video clip about Sally Ride on my 42-inch HDTV. The picture quality looked terrific.
Mountain Lion does a good job of integrating third-party services, like Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and Vimeo. If you sign into a network once, you ’ re signed in almost everywhere else you might make use of that network on the COMPUTER, which is a plus. Facebook and Twitter integrate with PC Contacts to do wise things like using buddies ’ Facebook profile pics as Contact images, and updating these pictures automatically as buddies alter them. You can easily additionally grab profile photos from Facebook for contacts who aren ’ t your Facebook good friends.
But some attributes in Mountain Lion need a little polishing.
The Notification Center wasn ’ t as beneficial as I hoped. Twitter and Facebook condition update boxes at the top of the Notification Center panel were too restricted. When I pasted long Internet URLs into tweets, they weren ’ t immediately reduced, which required me to utilize Twitter.com or TweetDeck. Facebook condition updates just let you kind plain text instead of tagging friends or uploading pictures in posts.
Notice Center guarantees to alert you of @ reply or direct messages that you get from Twitter. However it failed to inform me about dozens of @ responds that I obtained; the only ones I did see were from people I follow on Twitter. After some troubleshooting, Apple conceded that Notification Center is currently just capable of showing @ respond or direct message notices from individuals you follow. They promised to correct this issue in a future update to Mountain Lion.
Facebook notices from the Notice Center weren ’ t yet prepared for me to test.
The Notice Center kept my last five unread emails, and also upcoming calendar appointments, and alerts and banners appeared in the top right of my computer system screen to tell me about particular things so I wouldn ’ t miss them. If this drives you nuts, an easy on/off switch at the top of the Notification Center will stop them for a day; configurations in System Preferences will completely turn them off.
I also had problem with Calendar, which regularly informed me it couldn ’ t indication into my Google Calendar, though it showed events from my Google Calendar. I did a great deal of troubleshooting with Apple, but couldn ’ t address the complication. Apple said this was a problem they haven ’ t seen before and that they ’ re planning to fix it.
Dictation works any place you can easily type in Mountain Lion, and individuals can get it working using one of 2 methods: Tap the Operation essential quickly then once again to hold it down and talk, then let it go when completed, or just choose the mic icon (where visible) when you begin and stop dictating. This works like dictation on the iPhone or iPad, which shouldn ’ t be confused with the iPhone ’ s digital assistant, Siri. You ’ ll still need to utilize keyboard shortcuts or the mouse button, instead of your tone, to perform commands like “ Send ” or “ Post. ”
Apple ’ s iCloud replicates Reminders and Notes on your COMPUTER and additional devices. This was a large support to me as I tested Mountain Lion due to the fact that I created down a ton of my impressions in Notes, and these synced to my iPad and iPhone.
I effectively checked other attributes consisting of establishing VIPs in Mail, keeping documents from Pages in iCloud and screening Tab View in the new model of Safari.
For people who already make use of iPhones, iPads or iPod touches, numerous of the new characteristics in Mountain Lion will feel like second nature. I can ’ t completely count on Notice Center simply yet, however this os ’ s concentrate on smart sharing and overall integration with social networks makes it a delight to utilize.
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