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The innovative release of Mac OS, with completely new underpinnings and Aqua interface.

Released on 24th March 2001 by Apple Link points to external site.

Interface name: Aqua

Taglines: “The world’s most advanced operating system”, “The power of UNIX with the simplicity and elegance of Macintosh”

Sep 97Rhapsody
23 Oct 99Mac OS 9

10 May 99 Mac OS X Developer Preview (32 screenshots)
Nov 99 Mac OS X Developer Preview 2 (31 screenshots)
Feb 00 Mac OS X Developer Preview 3 (32 screenshots)
15 May 00 Mac OS X Developer Preview 4 (34 screenshots)
13 Sep 00 Mac OS X Public Beta (37 screenshots)
21 Jun 01 Mac OS X 10.0.4 (35 screenshots)
25 Sep 01 Mac OS X 10.1 (44 screenshots)

23 Aug 02Mac OS X 10.2 Jaguar
Detailed timeline

“One thousand square pixels of canvas” by Marcin Wichary, 2003
“Interview with Nathan Lineback” by Marcin Wichary, 2005
“Interview with John Gruber” by Marcin Wichary, 2005

Aqua entry Link points to external site from Wikipedia
Mac OS X 10.1 screenshots Link points to external site from Nathan Lineback
Featured edition
Desktop with applications in Mac OS X Public Beta
Mac OS X Public Beta
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12-page insert explaining first LCD iMac, including Mac OS X

Featured icons
Address bookSystemTrash canAccessibilityAppearance
Application managerAddress bookDesktopKeyboard mapDisplay
ScreensaverCalculatorRunning applicationsBrowserDisplay
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Featured quote

No. It’s no evolution at all. It’s no advance at all. [The users are still] stuck in this morass of overlapping windows.

(Jef Raskin on Mac OS X)

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Did you know...

Contemporary Mac OS X has more in common with NeXTSTEP than with classic Mac OS. When it was obvious that classic Mac OS design has limitation which cannot be overcome, and after several failed internal replacement projects at Apple (including the infamous Copland), the company started looking outside. When it was almost certain that BeOS will serve as a framework for the new OS, Apple surprised everyone by buying out NeXT, Inc., and using their operating system. BeOS was allegedly too limited (it couldn’t even print!) and too expensive. OS/2 and Windows NT were also considered alternatives, as both had PowerPC versions at the time.

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Copyright © 2002-2006 Marcin Wichary, unless stated otherwise.