Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 16th Feb 2012 14:46 UTC
Mac OS X Well, this is a surprise. Several websites have a preview up of Apple's next Mac OS X release - it's called Mountain Lion, and continues the trend of bringing over functionality from iOS to Mac OS X. Lots of cool stuff in here we've all seen before on iPhones and iPads, including one very, very controversial feature: Gatekeeper. Starting with Mac OS X 10.8, Apple's desktop operating system will be restricted to Mac App Store and Apple-signed applications by default (with an opt-out switch), following in Windows 8's footsteps.
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howitzer86
Member since:
2008-02-27

Your reasoning is good until you take the factor "workplace" and "market share" into account.

Eventually, the market share of such capped machines will be so high for one particular vendor, that the very software that you makes a living will require one these little monsters to work. And portability will not be a option thanks to a obfuscated API of the high-level tools used to develop these software, or the software is done by the same vendor of the machine.

That's the why today several people here at OSNews has dual-boot machines, even if they hates his secondary OS.

The situation will be thousands time worse in that hypothetical future, because you will need to actually have a second machine, and that sometimes is not a option for low income people.

You will also make your company even more dependent of the good will of a single monopolist supplier for all your IT needs. Your company will need to spend money just to have his custom software signed to work on theses machines. And as market share grows, the price of the signature will just too, and guess what? They could change you by machine, or even by processor cores, for something that you made (a internal software) to be used by your company.

This hypothetical monopolist will also wield the power to smash your way of living if he wants by simple revoking your developer ID for example. You need to be just slight inconvenient to them to face such fate.


Out of all the replies yours makes the most sense. I agree that would suck, but I also believe it wouldn't be the end of the world for geeks. We'll still be able to do what we do. I mention the possibility of higher development costs and lower returns in my first post.

We are talking hypotheticals though - What the government, Apple, and Microsoft *might* do - What the market *might* be like.

Since there's no doubt in you that the free market is not enough to ensure continued free use and development for computers (and I'm borderline on it TBH), all that's left to ask now is:

Do you favor preemptive action on the part of the government do deal with that situation? And just how would they deal with it? Break Microsoft and Apple up? Make vendor lock-in illegal? Institute software development license price controls?

I favor an in-market civilian reaction, which is simply to create a better product. Anything other than that is top-down government intervention, and the government just doesn't understand computer technology... I couldn't trust them to work in our interest even if we had the money to bribe them to do it.

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