By Wes Dunn
Aug 27, 2018
Summer is an exciting time to be a macOS user! Every June, thousands of software developers gather in San Jose for Apple’s annual Worldwide Developer Conference (a.k.a WWDC). While the vast majority of WWDC events focus on getting developers excited about new features in iOS, macOS, tvOS, etc. there is one event that a lot of non-developers get excited about – the Keynote! You might remember that the WWDC Keynote is where Steve Jobs first introduced the iPhone! Being a long-time macOS user, I am always excited to see what is announced for the next version of the operating system. This fall, Apple will introduce macOS Mojave, or version 10.14, of their core operating system. Today, I’ll share a few of the new features that I am very excited about.
Have you ever used an app that offers a “dark mode?” If not, it’s pretty much what it sounds like: the color scheme/theme of the applications windows, fonts, etc. are switched to be based on a black or dark grey background. For the most part, I’ve really only seen this implemented in software development focused apps/tools, but I absolutely love it. I believe that apps with “dark mode” make it much easier to use for prolonged period of time, staring at a bright white screen for hours on end can really take a toll on the eyes! So, naturally, I am extremely excited that Apple is bringing dark mode to macOS Mojave! I know it’s quite a simple thing as a concept, but I really believe it will make the overall user experience of macOS that much better!
I am most excited about the addition of “Intelligent Tracking Protection” in Safari (Apple’s Web Browser). I believe this feature will greatly improve privacy on the web for all macOS users. There are a slew of privacy improvements included in this release of Safari, but I believe the most notable is the work they have done on making it more difficult for users to be identified by their browser’s “fingerprint.” While a browser fingerprint doesn’t contain any personally identifiable information, when it is used in conjunction with other data that’s collected on websites, it becomes possible for social media companies, marketing companies, and other data aggregators to ascertain who a user is based on that browser fingerprint. Apple, by dramatically simplifying the data included in the requests made by the browser, is making it much for difficult to determine the identity of a user based on their browser fingerprint. I believe this is a huge improvement to privacy on the web and should be adopted my the other major browser vendors as soon as possible.
I’m a pretty big news junkie and often find myself checking the Apple News app on my iPhone, even when I am sitting at my desk and have my MacBook in front of me. I really like the mixture of sources that the News app displays and how often it updates. So, I am very excited to see that the News app is coming to macOS! I especially appreciate the approach they have taken to ensure that saved articles are synced across devices. It will be very, very nice to start reading on one device and pick it up again on another.
If you’re really excited, you can actually try the new version of macOS now by joining their Beta Software Program. The rest of you won’t have to wait too much longer, Mojave is due to be released sometime this fall.