Apple is now run out of cat names with which to brand Mac OS releases, so now it’s being named after all things California. The first is the famous surfing location The Mavericks. I will look forward to future OS X releases 10.10 “Overtaxed,” and 10.11 “This Mac OS X release contains chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm.”
I never used to sweat Apple releases at .0 level, but since Lion, their rollouts have been less than smooth. Nonetheless, since I have to support other people who might upgrade, I figured I should take the plunge early. I installed Mavericks on two of my machines this weekend. Had some issues with Mail hogging the CPU on my laptop for a while, and had to blow away my mail configuration and redo it. The other machine did not have that problem. Mail 7 seems to have serious issues other than that, so if you use Apple Mail, this new version sucks, just to warn you.
People with multiple displays will notice Mavericks handles this differently. It now treats each monitor as a sort of independent display. If you use full screen apps, you’ll probably like this. I don’t use many apps in full screen mode. The downside to the new multi-display regime is that you can’t have a window straddling the two displays. Apple does a little effect when you drag a window between displays so that it looks like it’s moving in between, but once you release the window it has to be on one screen or the, just cutting off the part of the window that overhangs the display.
If you’re thinking about upgrading, I’d wait. While not nearly as troubled as Lion (so far), there’s no real compelling reason to switch to Mavericks. There is no “must have” feature. I use a multi-headed workstation, and for me the new functionality rates a finger twirl; it’s just not all that cool and it has a downside. The new Maps application uses Apple Maps, which is worse than useless, and does anyone actually use iBook over Kindle? I’d wait until at least 10.9.1, possibly 10.9.2 if you’re thinking about doing the upgrade.
I have a real concern Apple is headed into trouble without Steve Jobs. Being an Apple customer in the early-to-mid 90s was depressing, and I fear they may be returning to that state of things.
UPDATE: More concerns about Apple.