That’s an actual text I got from my husband Fabio this morning. It’s not been the only one. He’s just switched from Windows. He has been delighted – yes, I’ll invoke the word – by so many affordances that I take for granted:
- “My phone rang, and the video I was watching on the computer paused!”
- Device to device copy/paste. Electronic signature sync. Markup.
- The forty-icon-ribbon-of-confusion is gone. Menus make sense. Things, such as preferences, are predictably in the same place. Rational experimentation tends to lead to success.
- There are many ways to create shortcuts to things he needs - in the dock, Launchpad, aliases on the Desktop, the Finder window sidebar. He doesn’t use Spotlight (yet) – he hasn’t needed to. Progressive disclosure.
- Simple – and thus memorable – trackpad gestures for powerful features, like Spaces.
I haven’t used Windows for ten years, since I was contractually obliged to at work. Perhaps all these features are there too. But they were not discoverable by Fabio, an intelligent person who uses a computer to do a job which is not a fancier version of “using a computer”.
I’ve been a Mac user since the IIsi. I know those features above inside-out, know which have been there since Classic days, which have just arrived, and yes, which can be flaky on occasion. But to see it through a new Mac user’s eyes is to see a vast enormity of mistakes not made. It is to perceive a clarity of intention through design, maintained over decades of updates.
I’m not an Apple pundit. I should probably listen to and read far fewer opinions from those who are. I will say, though, that no misstep today’s behemoth Apple has made, no product delay, no underperforming market, no dodgy spacebars – nothing leads me to believe that the company has lost focus on its principles of design.
I love my Mac, of course. But seeing someone else fall in love too, again, today? Pretty sweet.