Future of the Mac

Some food for thought on the Future of the Mac by Leo Laporte.

The Future of Mac – Thoughts on Apple’s M1 MacBooks – YouTube

Conversation 8 comments

  • bkkcanuck

    21 December, 2020 - 2:56 pm

    <p>I think that is a little out of context from that point since I have heard Leo say over and over again after the announcement of the M1 Mac that he is very much looking forward to it…. and he worries about the potential of the M1 Mac to grow to a point where there is risk in becoming a mono-culture because of it (if MS does not have an answer). From the point you put the start at it comes across as this is the end of the Mac. </p><p><br></p><p>What has been happening is that the OS itself has been in the process of 'hardening' (I vaguely remember having to go through during deployment and ensuring the UNIX box was hardened – long ago) — i.e. becoming more secure. This means that being able to extend the kernel directly is blocked, but an equivalent functionality is implemented through frameworks to do the same thing is made available (during transition periods there could be holes that exist due to not being able to think of everything). Making the OS more secure is something that is worthwhile. If you can segregate all the OS code into a read-only volume, and restrict unsecure access through things like kernel extensions… it makes it much much more difficult to install malware.</p><p><br></p><p>Interestingly, Goldman Sachs analyst Rod Hall indicated that Apple Mac revenues rose 50% year-over-year in the third quarter of 2020.</p>

    • shameer_mulji

      21 December, 2020 - 3:15 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#601452">In reply to bkkcanuck:</a></em></blockquote><p>"From the point you put the start at it comes across as this is the end of the Mac"</p><p><br></p><p>I agree with what you're saying. Where I disagree with Laporte is the part where he mentions that as the Mac becomes more of an appliance, it becomes less and less the computer for the rest of us. If anything, to me it's the opposite. He comes from a long line of Mac enthusiasts that lived through a time when the Mac was favorable for tinkerers and hobbyists and to me those days are becoming less and less as macOS becomes more hardened. But like you mentioned that doesn't mean the end of the Mac.</p>

    • wright_is

      Premium Member
      22 December, 2020 - 4:29 am

      <blockquote><em><a href="#601452">In reply to bkkcanuck:</a></em></blockquote><p>Yes and no. I agree with you in general. It is the fine detail where I think I beg to differ.</p><p>They are making it more secure by taking away the user's ability to configure it how they want. It is configured how Apple wants and that's it. Take firewalls, like Little Snitch, they no longer work on BigSur, or rather they only work in userland. You can no longer say you are working over a metered line and want to block system services, like updates, from uploading and downloading data. They are Apple services and are excluded from any monitoring or control.</p><p>You want to look up something quickly over your phone's mobile hotspot? You have to put up with the Apple services also calling home and possibly downloading a patch over that metered connection.</p><p>This mollycoddling of users is what disturbs me about Apple's attitude to operating systems. Yes, make it more secure by default. Yes, give the user the option to make life simpler. No, don't remove the user's ability to make their own decisions about what is right and wrong for them.</p><p>*NIX in general has several ways of hardening the system, but at the end of the day, the user can go in and fine-tune it for themselves, if they want to, including totally messing it up. That is their prerogative. </p>

      • bkkcanuck

        22 December, 2020 - 6:44 am

        <blockquote><em><a href="#601554">In reply to wright_is:</a></em></blockquote><p>UNIX hardening is done by professionals, most macOS users are casual users without access to professionals. There is already enough problems with all the insecure computers on the internet that can be co-opted into attack vectors. </p>

        • wright_is

          Premium Member
          22 December, 2020 - 7:59 am

          <blockquote><em><a href="#601558">In reply to bkkcanuck:</a></em></blockquote><p>Which is why I said that it is fine that Apple is applying defaults and making it automated for the general user. But they are taking away the ability for those who are interested in actually controlling their own system from doing so.</p><p>Have an option that asks the user if they are really sure they want to mess about under the hood, like the browsers do, when going into the config pages. But Apple just gives the professional user the bird.</p>

  • shark47

    22 December, 2020 - 11:34 am

    <p>Maybe he can become an Apple car enthusiast then. </p><p><br></p><p>It'll actually be interesting to see how things pan out. There's some overlap between Apple and Tesla fanbases.</p>

    • Paul Thurrott

      Premium Member
      23 December, 2020 - 9:32 am

      There may literally be 100 percent overlap.

  • F4IL

    22 December, 2020 - 6:08 pm

    <p>The mac becoming an appliance is probably a fair assessment—different people prefer different things and will continue to do so as long as freedom of choice exists. Leo Laporte appears to be one of those users that enjoyed the platform during its early OSX days but he is experienced enough to know that apple goes to great lengths to control their products which means taking control away from the user.</p><p><br></p><p>But then again, he is an experienced user, one that knows never to <em>put all his eggs in one basket,</em> no matter how enticing a particular brand / product can be.</p>


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