Being the good Apple soldier, I was one of those guys standing in a line in a mall hallway waiting for the Apple Store to reopen for the Leopard World Premiere. As I mentioned earlier, I even took my daughter (see very old, but cool picture above) to join in the festivities. It wasn’t until we got in line that she realized we weren’t going to an apple store; we were going to the Apple Store. It didn’t take her long to get into the excitement surrounding the event. The people in line were so fun and happy that it was hard not to get sucked into the moment. The Apple Store employees made it a lot of fun too by doing a count down and taking pictures and videos when people were finally allowed in the store.
Once the store opened, the line moved very fast. This was nothing like the time my brother, Greg, and I stood in line for hours just to see what the Chicago Michigan Avenue store looked like. We got into the store in plenty of time to get a t-shirt (yes, I have yet another Apple t-shirt now). The atmosphere in the store was electric. Judging by some of the questions I heard while walking around, I could tell many of the people were new to the Mac. Perhaps they were drawn in by the large line of people. With that many people, surely something incredible must be going on, right?
I do have to say that Leopard ran very well on the demonstration machines in the store. Of course, these are the latest and greatest Macs. It better run well on these machines. Quick Look was very cool, and Spaces turned out to be a lot cooler than I thought it would be. The new version of Mail looked very good. It makes me wish I could use a Mac as my regular every day work computer. Overall, the OS seemed to be very responsive and polished. I expected nothing less of Apple, though.
On top of everything going on with Leopard last night, something else grabbed my attention in the store. Obviously, most people outside of the Reality Distortion Field are drawn to the iPods and iPhone. I watched many people first gravitate to the tables with those devices. They clearly were not Mac users. In fact, one woman called the Apple Store the iPhone Store. Something cool happened with these people when they were done playing with all of the latest iPods; they started playing with the Macs! I think a lot of homes will have shiny new Macs this holiday season. Let’s hope this is a trend that makes its way into the business world too. With so many corporate applications now using web-based technologies, there is no reason a major corporation could not use Macs as their desktop solution. No reason at all. Sure, they may need to use Windows on the server side if they use ASP.NET, but if they use PHP, they could even have Macs on the server side. It’s all starting to come together.
On a personal note, something else really cool happened at the Apple Store last night. I watched first hand as my daughter officially got sucked into the Reality Distortion Field. First she played at the kids table with all of the cool applications for kids her age. Then she found the iPod nano. We were at the iPod table the rest of the night. She instantly figured out how to use it without any instruction from me. That says a lot about the iPod interface. She had a little more difficulty with the iPhone interface. You hear that, Apple?
We had a lot of fun at the Leopard World Premiere last night. Kyah is now an Apple evangelist, I talked a lady into buying an iPod touch for her kid, and we had some really good father-daughter time. I didn’t buy Leopard last night because I’m not convinced my old Power Mac G4 will be able to handle all of the cool features that are important to me. I would love to have it, though, so we’ll see what happens when 10.5.1 comes out.