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WWDC 2004 - Live Coverage of Steve Jobs Keynote

12:00PM CDT, June 28th, 2004

[1:40 PM] All of these iChat AV things were done with OS X's tools, of course, including Video Units.

Steve is now recapping.

We will be spell checking this coverage later. Make sure you discuss Tiger in our forum topic. - posted by Bryan

[1:35 PM] Steve is showing how it looks, and boy does it look great. The image quality is astounding, and the interface for multi-conferencing is simply stunning. All three people are in one window, with angled panes in that window for each person. It's really impressive, folks, and my explanation frankly doesn't do it justice. This could really help Apple in IT, though again, Apple would have to actually let people know about it. - posted by Bryan

[1:32 PM] Steve says an SDK for Automater is being released today. - posted by Bryan

[1:32 PM] Moving on to iChat AV now. Says that iChat's video in Tiger will be based on H624, which means the quality in iChat will be incredible. Steve also says that you will be able to chat with up to 10 people in voice chat, and up to 3 people in video conferencing (for a total of 4 people). Very cool, and the audience likes it.

Phil Schiller is helping to demo it, and he quipped "Hey Steve, where are you?" It was funny. - posted by Bryan

[1:26 PM] Steve is now talking about something called Automater, and he brought "Saul" up on stage to demo it. Automater effectively is a trainable app for learning repetitive tasks. It has an easy to use interface, and the use Saul is demoing is grabbing images off of his family's Web sites for use in a DVD he gives out at Christmas. He is showing how he can add Web sites for Automater to download from, add them to iPhoto, make a slideshow, and send it to iDVD.

This is definitely, definitely, cool, and it is very much for "normal" folks and computer pros alike. Very cool. Of course, Apple won't advertise it, just like Apple hasn't advertised anything in OS X other than iTunes, so no one besides me and you will every know about it.

I should also note that Steve said a .Mac SDK was being released for developers, allowing them to tap into things such as iSync. - posted by Bryan

[1:13 PM] These seem like very, very cool tools that Apple is building into the OS. - posted by Bryan

[1:13 PM] The developers were impressed by Phil's presentation. Steve says that he hopes Adobe builds these new tools into their apps, so that the Mac versions will be even better. An SDK is being released today for developers, for Tiger of course.

Steve is now showing off Dashboard, which seems very much like a rip-off of Konfabulator. We hope to have more on that later today or tomorrow. In any event, Dashboard is an app for "Widgets" (Tiger images on the Internet this weekend referred to "Gadgets," instead of "Widgets," with Widgets being the term Konfabulator uses. Widgets are effectively little many apps that do very specialized things. Steve says he wants for the developers in the audience to start making Widgets for Dashboard, and that an SDK for the technology was being released. - posted by Bryan

[1:11 PM] Steve also noted, BTW, that Core Video was used to develop the recently released Motion.

Phil is building an app using these new tools, dropping in effects and whatnot into a random app through drag and drop. That's very cool, and the developers gave another "Ooooohhhh" when they saw it. - posted by Bryan

[1:05 PM] "Next up, a technology built into Tiger called Core Image." He is comparing it to Core Audio, the technology built into OS X that allows developers to do cool things with sound in OS X. He says that Tiger will have both Core Image and Core Video built into it. This will allow developers to do tap into some system level tools for imaging and video. Image Units and Video Units will also be included, allowing developers to extend any app they want. Steve Brought Phil Schiller on stage to demonstrate it. - posted by Bryan

[1:02 PM] In some ways, this RSS feature competes with Google News, and other news aggregators. The interface is very easy to use, and seemingly flexible. We look forward to checking it out in person.

Steve is now showing a Google search, effectively doing an Apples and Oranges comparison between Google and searching through RSS feeds. What he is leaving out, of course, is the above mentioned Google News. Also of note, he made a crack about searching for articles about Vice President Dick Cheney, referencing the "F-word" incident making the news rounds in the last few days. - posted by Bryan

[12:59 PM] Frank says specifically that using this codec, one can generate a High Definition image at the same data rate as current codecs. Again, that's impressive. It just looks great. "Windows Media? Bring it," says Frank. - posted by Bryan

[12:58 PM] Steve is moving on to Safari. "I hope you like it as much as we do." Steve is talking about RSS feeds, and says that RSS support will be built into Safari in a version called Safari RSS. This version will apparently allow you to aggregate RSS feeds, and search through them for topics you want. This is one step closer, BTW, to software agents that go and get whatever content you want. It's not a true software agent, certainly, but it's a step closer. It also makes the idea of RSS feeds much more approachable for non-geeks. - posted by Bryan

[12:56 PM] Steve is showing the latest DVD standard that was adopted by the MPEG group for DVD, called H624. It's scalable, awesome, open, and being built into QuickTime. Frank Casanova has come on stage to demonstrate it. Says it will support 4 times the resolution at the same data rate as current codecs. That's very impressive. - posted by Bryan

[12:55 PM] "Now I'm going to show you something very cool." The audience laughed in appreciation of the subtle humor. He did a search for something, Yosemite, and showed how Tiger found it in a PDF of a Map of Yosemite Park. Steve says that Meta data and other information will be integrated into Spotlight. Steve also says that Developers can incorporate this in their apps, as well. Excellent. - posted by Bryan

[12:49 PM] He also showed some integration between difference apps, where searching something, say Paris Hilton, though I may have misunderstood that, returns contact info, e-mails, images, etc. associated with that search. That's also very, very cool. - posted by Bryan

[12:47 PM] Apple's approach to searching in OS X has been quite varied. First it's part of the FInder, then it's part of Sherlock, then it's part of the Finder. That inconsistency has been foolish, IMNHO, but this new technology might bring some consistency back to OS X. The demonstrations he is offering are certainly impressive, so it will be interesting to how this all works out.

He demoed a bunch of searches in Address Book, which looks substantially improved. Is now demoing Mail. Mail's searches frankly stink as of Panther, and Tiger's implementation of this is also very much improved.

Now showing System Prefences, and the audience applauded with oohs and aahs. He's showing how you can "search" in System Preferences for something, say WiFi, Desktop Images (or Wallpaper for the Windows users!), etc., and Spotlight will shine a spotlight on the right Control Panel for that search. That's VERY cool (hence the oohs and ahhs). - posted by Bryan

[12:43 PM] "Now I'd like to talk about what is the most revolutionary feature in Tiger," says Steve, and that's something to do with searching. He says that Tiger will be far ahead of Longhorn in this regard, which is a reference to Microsoft's new file system, which many have praised. Steve says that the problem of searching had already been solved by Apple in iTunes. He said the challenge was in applying that to other parts of the OS.

It's called Spotlight, and Steve is demonstrating different examples of Spotlight in use. Steve also says that Apple has built Spotlight into some different apps in Tiger. - posted by Bryan

[12:41 PM] Steve says that Apple has leapt ahead of everyone else in the OS business. He says that others are trying to "madly copy" Panther in their current OSes, but that Tiger would take Apple father.

There are more than 150 new features in tiger. Steve is going to show us 10 of them.

Touted the fact that OS X is the biggest Unix distribution by volume.

Tiger will fully support 64-bit proicessing. Any process can be 64-bit.

Tiger improves SMB support, WIndows support, new e-mail features... - posted by Bryan

[12:35 PM] GuitarRig just started shipping.

Steve is bringing out Aaron Anderson, the president of a small company that makes an app called "Orbit." This software tracks satellites, some 650 unclassified satellites. Very cool, though its real-world uses are most definitely niche. Mr. Anderson is really touting OS X's development tools in his presentation, which is why he was really brought up. He says he made the app himself in just three months using Apple's Xcode. He also says a screen saver called FreeFall will be available. The audience applauded very loudly.

We're moving on to Tiger now. - posted by Bryan

[12:34 PM] Steve is bringing the maker of an app called GuitarRig. He is showing it as an Audio Unit plugin, inside GarageBand. What this means is that you can use it from within GarageBand or any other app that recognizes Audio Units, a plugin format. The app basically allows you to make your guitar sound like just about anything. It's quite impressive, and we're listening to a studio guitarist demonstrate it. Lots of sounds, lots of effects. Very cool. - posted by Bryan

[12:33 PM] Myst Revelatations definitely looks cool. Fully interactive, 3D, etc. The graphics look remarkable. The audience literally drowned out the presenter with applause. - posted by Bryan

[12:31 PM] Myst Revelations (Myst 4?) to come to Mac. A Ubie Soft (sp?) rep is giving us a run through the game. She noted that Myst initially started off as a Mac-only game. Again, the crowd loves it. - posted by Bryan

[12:28 PM] Brought a Maya rep out who said that Maya Unlimited to OS X. This is big news as it finally makes the Mac platform feature compatible with Maya's other platforms (Windows, Linux, IRIX, and perhaps others). - posted by Bryan

[12:28 PM] Steve says he had lunch with Bill Gates recently, and that both he and Bill said that their companies' mutual relationships had never been better. The crowd applauded, and Steve said that the Mac Business Unit's products had never been better. He also noted that Borland was bringing its Java development IDE to OS X. - posted by Bryan

[12:26 PM] Steve is now going over the "There have only been three major OS transitions in history" spiel. He did something similar at San Francisco, I believe. Apple ][ to Mac, DOS to Windows, Mac OS to OS X. - posted by Bryan

[12:25 PM] Steve says that Panther is the most successfull OS ever for Apple, and that 12 million people use OS X (not necessarily Panther). He says there are more than 12,000 apps available for OS X, too. The crowd applauded. Steve says "The transistion to Mac OS X is now over." - posted by Bryan

[12:24 PM] We're moving on to Panther, and presumably Tiger. - posted by Bryan

[12:24 PM] The crowd, BTW, is LOVING this. Steve has everyone wrapped around his little finger. Also, the hall is PACKED, far more so than last year. There is literally standing room only in the back. - posted by Bryan

[12:20 PM] Says it will sell for US$3299, that it is 77% bigger than the 23" CD HD at 4 million pixels, and that it only works with the Power Mac G5. This is, according to Steve, because Apple had to develop a new video card for the unit, which the company did with NVIDIA. That's interesting in that Apple has seemed to be moving closer to ATI Than NVIDIA in the last year. From my perspective, it's a Very Good Thing™ for Apple to maintain good relations with both companies, so I'll kick in a proverbial "Yay!" with this.

Says the display requires two DVI links, and that the US$599 card he talked about will actually drive two 30" displays, each with its dual DVI links. Touted the fact that it will drive 8 million pixels with two displays together. Will be available in August. - posted by Bryan

[12:17 PM] OK,m we're set up, running a tad late. Steve showed off Apple's Power Mac G5 product line, including a snazzy video. He then directly addressed his promise last year to be a 3 GHz by this year. He blamed the problem on technology, citing the fact that both IBM and Intel had hit a wall.

He then introduced new displays. Built in FireWire and USB ports, DVI (instead of the stupid ADC), and a 30" LCD display. 2160 x SomethingMassive. The crowd loves it. - posted by Bryan

[9:28 AM] We are pleased to announce we will be providing live coverage of today's WWDC keynote, barring any technical difficulties. Should we encounter any of those pesky technical difficulties, we will post our notes in this space as soon after the keynote as possible.

At today's event, Apple is expected to unveil the next major version of Mac OS X, which has been dubbed Tiger. Conflicting rumors have circulated from the usual suspects on what other announcements will be made, but if you want to get it first, tune into our live coverage, on this Web page. The keynote begins at 10:00 AM, Pacific.

We should also note that Apple is not providing any Webcasts or other broadcasts of the event. - posted by Bryan