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Wednesday 06/30/04

Mac OS X 10.4 "Tiger"'s Dashboard widgets are Web pages.

Update: As usual, Jon Gruber of Daring Fireball is on top of the whole Konfabulator/Dashboard flap.

Update: He's on top of it again (and linked to this page for my comment recounting the Larry Niven anecdote).

Re: widgets are Web pages

There are 5 messages in this thread, displayed in the order they were posted.

Matt 7/1/2004 3:10:02 AM Pacific

Jon Gruber is the shepherd of the stupid part of the mac community. He is not on top of anything, except stupidity. The fact that both use a different technology to implement the same features only prove the point that Apple didn't stole the code from Konfabulator. Other than that, he is challenging your IQ by claiming that only an Apple engineer can decide if this is a ripoff or not or whether they should have bought Konfabulator. He is saying that you are too stupid to make this call because you can't comprehend the complex engineering problems, and yet you seem to take that challenge quite lightly. Interesting admission. I don't dispute that point, but certainly Dashboard is a clear ripoff of Konfabulator. Jon Gruber idiot had denied the security problems on MacOS X before and then later changed his position. He is not smart enough, he simply tells you what you want to hear, which is "Apple rules and everythingelse sucks".
Jerry Kindall 7/1/2004 9:03:05 AM Pacific
He is saying that you are too stupid to make this call because you can't comprehend the complex engineering problems, and yet you seem to take that challenge quite lightly.

Or else I do understand them and agree with him. Hmmmmm?

My own take is that Konfabulator is basically OneClick, plus transparency and minus much of the ease of use and some of the features (such as recordability). I was happy to see Konfabulator at first because I really got a lot of use out of OneClick, and hoped it would replace it for me, but was disappointed when I found out it wasn't nearly as easy to create Konfab widgets as it was to make OneClick palettes.

I'm sure Apple saw Konfabulator and said "This is cool, but we can do it better." What exactly should they have bought from Konfabulator? Not the code, if they were going to throw it out anyway, which they had to if they wanted to do it better. Not the graphic design, since they didn't copy that any more than Konfabulator already copied it from Apple. Not the name, which is terrible for an OS feature (hell, a fancy word for "liar" is marginal for a third-party product). Those are the only things buyable or sellable about Konfabulator.

Science fiction writer Larry Niven once said, perceptively, that if a fan gives a writer an idea, and the writer goes on to write a story from it, the writer owes the fan a beer, but no more. Because coming up with ideas is the easy part. What matters is what you do with the idea, and I think Apple has done more. Arlo and Perry do deserve a beer for their trouble, but I don't see what else Apple could owe them.

tom 7/1/2004 5:45:36 PM Pacific
I agree that Apple had no obligation to buy Konfab, but I do see some hilarious irony in the photocopier tag lines that are getting thrown around. Apple has no more of a claim against Redmond than Konfab does against Apple.
Jerry Kindall 7/1/2004 6:29:17 PM Pacific
I agree that the Redmond gibes are not really accurate, especally after Apple has copied features like fast user switching from Windows and now is going to great pains to implement Windows-compatible access control lists for permissions. But I think the posters were just to get the developers pumped up. I don't think, as Bill Palmer does, that they are harbingers of an aggressive advertising campaign for Tiger that targets Windows users. Tiger's still up to a year away; no company plans their advertising that far in advance.
Travis Butler 7/6/2004 6:55:11 AM Pacific
One thing from Hyatt's blog, that no one else seems to be picking up on: Dashboard appears to have had a completely independent genesis from Konfabulator. According to Dashboard II, Dashboard came from the idea of taking 'sidebar panels' from Mozilla and giving them an independent run-time existence.

Sounds like if anyone's got a legitimate beef, it's Mozilla.

It is currently 11/27/2014 3:35:23 AM Pacific.

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