OS X is now a man. 13 years ago today, Apple forever changed the trajectory of the Mac OS when it began shipping the original version of OS X for $129 -- a vestige of an era back when Apple actually used to charge for an OS.
Codenamed Cheetah, the original incarnation of OS X featured a number of long-awaited under the hood improvements, not the least of which was the introduction of Aqua, a completely revamped interface and a marked departure from Mac OS 9. You might recall that Jobs, in describing OS X's interface, famously said that Apple "made the buttons on the screen look so good you'll want to lick them."
The advertised features at the time read as follows:
- an open source, UNIX based foundation called Darwin;
- Apple's new Quartz™ graphics engine based on the PDF standard for stunning graphics and broad font support;
- OpenGL for spectacular 3D graphics and gaming;
- integrated QuickTime™ for streaming audio and video; the Classic API, which runs most existing Mac® applications "as is";
- the Carbon™ API, which runs "tuned-up" Mac applications with the full Mac OS X features;
- the Cocoa™ API, which runs advanced object-oriented applications, providing developers the fastest and most powerful way to create applications for Mac OS X;
- the full Java 2 API, providing developers the most advanced Java 2 client available; and
- the Aqua™ user interface, an entirely new user interface with superior ease of use, amazing new functionality and a stunning, elegant new appearance.
For a stroll down memory lane, here's Jobs introducing Mac OS X for the first time in 2000 at Macworld San Francisco.
Also, make sure to check out John Siracusa's inaugural OS X review over here.
Lastly, if you happen to remember where you were the first time you used OS X, please chime-in in the comments below.