What is Java and do I need it on my Mac?

Java is used both by applications and web browsers. However, the nature of Java means that it is susceptible to security breaches, i.e., using Java could make it easier for bad people to get their hand on your data. For this reason, Apple has chosen to stop including Java with OS X for security reasons and because most people do need it.

Read more

Microsoft sticks it to Mac users, raises prices on Office for Mac 2011

Oh Microsoft, what the heck are you thinking. Oh yeah, making more money.

Microsoft has announced that the are raising the price on Office for the Mac as much as 17%. This is for Office Mac 2011, that’s right, a price increase for 2-year old software. The details were covered in this article from Computerworld:

“Microsoft has quietly raised prices of Office for the Mac as much as 17% and stopped selling multi-license packages of the application suite.

The move puts Office for Mac 2011 on the same pricing schedule as the new Office 2013 for Windows. The price increases and the disappearance of the multi-license bundles also makes Microsoft’s Office 365, a software-by-subscription deal the company has aggressively pushed, more competitive with traditional “perpetual” licenses.

Read more

Apple design, Jony Ive and the rise of skeuomorphobia

photo-115-600x245Here’s a great article from The Next Web about skeuomorphism and the Mac operating system.

“First of all, skeuomorphism is actually a sharply defined and angular phrase that describes a very specific design technique. On a basic level, it’s designing an object that mimics, both in appearance and use, a real-world counterpart. This kind of technique is evident in apps on iOS like Contacts, which uses a leather-bound contacts book with flippable pages to represent a ‘real’ book of contacts.”

Personally, I’d like to see the designers at Apple go away from the idea of making thing on a computer or other device look like things in the real world. What do you think?

Read the full article here.