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The Little Things: there are only two versions of Mac OS X

David Chartier

It's been a while since we've had an entry in The Little Things, a series that examines the unsung features of the Mac and its community that we appreciate. A post from The Macalope brings to light a great one: Apple's KISS policy towards the versions of Mac OS X and how they're named.

[Update: Mike made a great point in the comments: the six versions of Vista only encompass consumer-focused editions of Windows, i.e. - Windows Server isn't even a part of this conversation, so I probably shouldn't have considered Mac OS X Server in my post. In this context, there is only one version of Mac OS X. I guess ultimately (no pun intended), I was just trying to be nice to the visiting team by giving them a fighting chance and doubling their odds with two versions of the Mac OS.]

The Antlered One points to (and laughs at) an eWeek article that asks Which Vista is the Right Vista?, examining the 6 - yes, count them, 6 - versions of Microsoft Windows Vista that will hit the streets soon: Vista Crappy Starter, Vista Home, Vista Home Premium, Vista Business, Vista Enterprise and, of course, the $400 Vista Ultimate which might very well likely require a new PC purchase of its own, just so its overblown eye candy doesn't choke on the 'old 'n busted' PC you might have just bought earlier this year (disclaimer: yes, 'Starter' is mainly for emerging countries and markets, but it's still on the list, which means it's still going to add to many customers' newfound addiction to Advil). While I have traditionally tried to stay at least somewhat informed of what's going on in the Microsoft Universe since my switch about 5 years ago, I find myself floored by this latest achievement of mind-numbing OS stratification. Does Business include Office? Why does Home Premium have crippled networking - after all, it's Premium, right? Will Ultimate eat my baby? These, and many other similar questions, are sure to take the bounce out of many a customer's step on their way to purchase a shiny, new (emphasis on shiny) version of Windows.

So thanks Apple, for not splitting Mac OS X into Gutted, Home, Premium, Even More Premiumer and Ultimately Shiny versions. Mac OS X does everything for everyone it needs to (and for bonus points: Apple's media center comes on all of them Update: save for the Mac Pro, good call Mr. Hugenstein), and Mac OS X Server's name is obvious enough to let most customers know that it's probably not their cup of tea. Good show Apple, and thanks for letting me check that bottle of Advil at the door.

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