Yesterday, Apple’s latest operating system, Mac OS X Lion, was publicly released.
Although it’s been met with a decent amount of backlash (mostly in regards to compatibility and integration issues), the general experience is a step up from Snow Leopard. Lion’s feature set offers noticeably improved organization and usability with functionality that’s sure to appeal to both casual and power users. Without further ado, here’s a list of six OS X Lion features you’re sure to enjoy.
1. Full screen views. Many native apps (along with a select handful of third party applications) now sport full screen views. For the tasks that require a distraction-free digital working environment, full screen is the way to go.
2. Launchpad. Application folders are a thing of the past. With Launchpad, you’ve centralized access to all of your applications. And boy, does it look groovy. +SJobs really sexed this up.
3. Mission Control. Screen real estate is a precious resource for those without the new 27″ Thunderbolt equipped display. Mission Control’s job is to assist you in managing the invariable bevy of windows, apps, and folders that might be open at any given time. A three-finger swipe up provides you access to your current window, your minimized windows, your full-screen windows, and your desktop windows. You’re no longer subjected to every open window being forced onto one screen.
4. Redesigned iCal and Address Book. Apple has finally given these cornerstones of digital socialization and organization the respect they deserve, by decking them out with new looks and increasing integration with external contact/calendar management services (e.g. Google Contacts, Google Calendar). Both applications now feature set-and-forget integration: enter username and password, hit enter, and you’re synced. It’s that easy. Also notable is the adoption of the iOS (iPhone and iPad systems) physical surface look and feel. These apps are designed to look like the physical things they represent–talk about coming full circle.
5. Redesigned Mail. The way that Lion organizes Mail is definitely an improvement on Snow Leopard’s cramped and cluttered layout. Although it’s functionality remains relatively unchanged, Mail now features a redesigned three-column layout. On the left are your mailboxes, in the middle is a list of your messages, and on the right are your message previews.
6. Security. Lion is getting a lot of attention in the digital security world for it’s beefy safeguards. Apple engineers have spent a lot of effort securing Lion’s core services and privacy features. The good people at SecurityWeek.com go in-depth on all the countermeasures. It’s important to note, however, that visiting Pokemon digipet giveaway websites is still inadvisable. Protecting you from yourself is outside Apple’s core competencies.
How do you feel about OS X Lion? Love it? Hate it? Couldn’t care less?