Apple to unleash Leopard Core Animation revolution; biggest UI change in 30 years

“When Steve Jobs takes the stage Monday at Apple’s programmers conference, he’s likely to give the world a glimpse of an upgraded Mac operating system that could herald the biggest changes to the machine’s interface in 30 years,” Scott Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report for Wired.

“At the annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, Jobs will probably show off Leopard, a Mac OS X update due in October that he has promised contains ‘top secret’ features. But perhaps the most important feature is one that has been overlooked by many Apple fans: a new set of tools for building program interfaces called Core Animation,” Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report.

“Core Animation will allow programmers to give their applications flashy, animated interfaces. Some developers think Core Animation is so important, it will usher in the biggest changes to computer interfaces since the original Mac shipped three decades ago,” Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report.

“The Core Animation ‘revolution’ is already starting to happen. Apple’s iPhone at the end of the month will see people using their fingers to flip through media libraries, and pinching their fingers together to resize photos,” Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report.

“Some Mac developers are so excited by Core Animation they are going to drop support for previous versions of their software, which won’t display their new interfaces on older versions of OS X, “Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report.

“Austin Sarner, an interface designer and engineer at software company madebysofa, says that the new style of Apple apps isn’t just about glossy effects — there’s a usability payoff as well,” Gilbertson and Leander Kahney report. “‘Animation in general creates continuity and more direct feedback to a user experience. In addition to obvious graphical speed boosts, the elegance (that animation) can add to a UI is pretty substantial,’ he says.”

Much more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “David A.” for the heads up.]


  1. Ok…do I have a “problem” and need therapy if I took off of work monday just to watch a live update feed of the keynote from my MacBook pro?

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  2. Cool factor notwithstanding animation can be incredibly annoying. Dancing hamsters? Animated gif vomit everywhere on amateur web pages? Heaven forbid there should be any empty spaces. That animated opening and closing non-stop mailbox was a crime against humanity. Even subtle animation can be distracting especially if it’s repetitive.

    Here are some examples:

    Off switch, please. Or better yet, animations that are UI tested and useful.

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