the transmug report

By Yves Avérous

A New Cat in Town

At last, the newest version of Mac OS X is on our desktops. The question is, what does upgrading to Leopard translate into? First, surprisingly enough, I must say that even on my 4-1/2-year-old PowerBook G4 at 867MHz (slowest configuration permissible), this “cat” is still faster than the previous one (called Tiger). I heard they had made a particular effort on the optimization of the system and it is notable!

Then, there’s the look. Overall, it’s darker, and although more serious, it remains— thanks to the fact that most of the unified look draws from iTunes—very much playful. What impressed me the most after only a few hours on the system was how crisp everything had become. There has obviously been a serious effort applied to the resolution of the characters on the screen. It is a welcome improvement, as Mac users had to pay for a more accurate rendition of the fonts with a tad more blurriness. Until now.

Apple has over 300 more reasons on their site ( to convince you. One of my favorites on the list is screen sharing, which allows me to take over mom’s machine in France and fix some shenanigans remotely without any prior voodoo settings. And don’t get me started with the Finder: you can now see the front page of most of your documents (Office, PDF, images, and more) in Cover Flow view like you do in iTunes, and even skim through them with Quick Look!

And, saving the best for last, at least for those who don’t use Super Duper!: Time Machine is introduced. This is pure high-tech magic made simple, allowing you to go back in time virtually and retrieve long-lost documents where they were at the time you left them. Welcome to the advent of the “no configuration, no excuse” backup, all in the background.

To learn more, you may want to join the discussion on the TransMUG group list. Visit to become a member and get discounts on hardware and software, too. TransMUG meets every quarter before the NCTA general meeting.