What happens when Unix is Macintosh?
Monday, May 7, 2001 by Dave Winer.
For the last few months I've been trying to wrap my mind around Apple's new operating system, which is both Macintosh and Unix at the same time. The Mac OS X users I email with seem a bit like fish out of water, gasping for sustenance, and finding that the air is breathable, even if it is a strange experience.
To me, as a software developer, it's intriguing that it runs both Mac and Unix software. The juice is at the intersection between the two. Imagine being able to shoot commands at Quark XPress from a Perl script running behind Apache. As Mac apps get "carbonized" to run on Unix side, just this kind of connection should be commonplace. What a rush of power. A new scripting culture to explore.
It gets even worse. SOAP and XML-RPC are coming to the Macintosh, from several sources, and because of the interop work we've been doing with other developers, it stands a pretty good chance of working with all other popular OSes. Imagine what this means for the education and publishing worlds where Macs are quite popular; and for the business world where publishing and education are things they want to plug into their applications.
So far the attention has been on the user experience of Mac OS X. But look deeper, there's a difference in the developer culture of the platform. It's something new.