After using Mac OS X 10.4 for awhile, I have mixed feelings.
The underlying technology improvements in 10.4 are incredible, particularly for developers. These additions and improvements are worth upgrading to 10.4 alone. I feel that Tiger is the most significant update to Mac OS X yet and I highly recommend upgrading, regardless if you are a developer or not.
That said, surface features are mediocre and bugs abound.
In general, I don’t like the new Mail app. I do not like the mailboxes on the left. I don’t like that I cannot arrange the mailbox order. I don’t like that the mailboxes are no longer bolded when there are unread messages. I especially don’t like inconsistent user interfaces. I abhor brushed metal and I hate Mail’s new brushed-metal-meets-aqua-but-not-really. Cage Figher makes the new Mail less f’ugly, but only slightly.
I have reinstated LaunchBar’s rank in my dock. Spotlight loads Applications last in its search, despite Applications being at the top of my designated search priorities. This second or so additional delay is not acceptable when I use it primarily as an application launcher.
I still haven’t found anything useful to put on my Dashboard other than the weather.
Automator is clearly a solution looking for a problem. I don’t need another application to run Photoshop commands when Photoshop has had recordable actions for many years.
iCal still doesn’t support group-managed calendars. Sharing a calendar is nice, but allowing multiple people and computers to edit a shared calendar is great.
iChat does not allow you to be online with multiple screen names concurrently. AIM for Windows does. Come on Apple… catch up. Also, I am one of the unfortunate souls experiencing the erroneous “Insufficient Bandwidth” error that prevents me from A/V chatting with anyone, even though I could in Panther. Additionally, iChatAgent stops responding at least three times a day during file transfer… and I transfer LOTS of files via IM.
My complaints are resolvable and, fortunately, Apple listens to its customers. Life always could be worse: I could be back in Windows.