Thoughts on “Back to Mac”

Earlier today I provied some live coverage of Back to Mac and now I want to mention a few things. I was curious to see if there would be an iWork update. There was not. Not too surprising.

iLife ’11 – iPhoto ’11
This was the big thing to me in the short-term. I like what I saw with iPhoto. I use iPhoto to organize things and to do slideshows they’ve improved both. The new full-screen modes are nice, as are the slideshow themes. The Letterpress cards and the book improvements..I’ll have to see the Letterpress cards in person before deciding, but they looked impressive in the demo. I have ordered cards through Apple before and was very pleased with the quality. The books I’ve put together wouldn’t really benefit from the improvements announced today – usually they are photos from different events and dates. Emailing from within iPhoto is definitely nice. I do like the “Project view” which resembles a book shelf that stores your projects/books/cards.

iLife ’11 – iMovie ’11
The audio editing and the One Step Effects looked interesting. I could see the One Step Effects being used in a few areas in some family videos to maybe highlight something. The people finder that was brought in from iPhoto was the most interesting thing to me. That might be handy depending on how it works. The movie trailers could be a really fun thing, especially for younger family members.

FaceTime for Mac
I’m surprised they didn’t have this available with then iPod touches with FaceTime shipped, but it’s a very welcome addition.

Mac OS X 10.7 Lion
I liked what I saw with the Launchpad and Mission Control apps. Some of the full-screen stuff was interesting, but I’m still not completely sold on it. Full-screen is nice though when it’s properly utilized. It’s not going to be available until Summer of 2011, so we’ll see. I’m interested in what I didn’t see today.

Mac App Store
I don’t have a strong opinion either way. I think it could be really handy for people who are new to Macs, and going by the sales presentation at the beginning of the event today, half of new Macs are being bought by first-time Mac owners. It could also encourage more developers who have had favorable experiences with the App Store on the iOS devices.

Incidentally, iLife ’11 is available the Apple Store both online and in the retail stores, although it maybe in short supply. It is also available through, however it seems to be going in and out of stock:
* Amazon: iLife ’11 – $49.00
* Amazon: iLife ’11 Family Pack – $79.00