14 February 2003
Posted in Reports
Paul Johnston opened the presentation (or perhaps I should say, Keynote), welcoming those attending the Roadshow.He mentioned Macguide and the great job the magazine has been doing to promote Mac use within New Zealand. Moving on to the Switch campaign, he pointed out how successful it had been for Apple world-wide and then showed us 3 of the Switch ads.
His retail update talked about the Apple stores in the US and how in some respects it is hoped to promote a similar look with some resellers stores in New Zealand. In particular, he highlighted the use of a similar design for the Auckland MagnumMac store, which Renaissance supported the development of.
Moving on to hardware updates, he talked about the new Airport Extreme and new iMac configurations.
On the software side, he introduces Stuart Harris of Apple Australia, who took the stage and talked us through some software updates and introductions.
Stuart gave a demonstration of Keynote, the new presentation software from Apple and showed us the ease with which graphically stunning presentations and transitions can be created.
Moving on to the 'Digital Hub' he showed us the new iPhoto 2 and some of its features, iMovie 3 and the difference between this and previous versions, and then moved onto to one I was waiting for, iDVD 3. iDVD 3 looked incredible, with numerous themes which can be applied to your DVD project. He demonstrated a photo album styled theme which you could drop movies into as your startup montage, as well as one sowing a movie on an old projector. It was very impressive.
Finishing off this section on software demos, Stuart showed us Final Cut Express, the slimmed-down version of Final Cut Pro. Stuart would also make a presentation later in the afternoon to people wanting to learn more about Express. In short, it was obvious that it is very much like FCP but cheaper and slightly less powerful. It will be a great way to move on from iMovie though.
Paul returned onto the stage to talk about the new display added to Apple's LCD line-up and the benefits of using these displays. He then moved on to the new G4 and did the usual comparison of processing power in relation to other Macs and PCs. The obligatory Photoshop-performance-on-a-Mac-versus-a-PC was also present.
Next, it was time to move on to OSX. Stuart Harris took the stage again and ran us through the OS. He mentioned its support for industry and open standards, the power of Unix as well as some fun demos of the power of Quartz Extreme for displaying complex activity on screen when doing high powered multimedia.
He showed us Safari and the standards it has been built upon, demonstrated iChat by talking to his PC laptop on stage and showed how using standards such as Samba, you can easily connect to and share documents with PC users. Moving on to the address book, he showed how you can use iSync to synchronise information via bluetooth into your mobile phone, iCal and how you can share calendars online and concluded by showing Inkwell, OSX 10.2's inbuilt handwriting recognition software which activated when a Wacom tablet is connected to your Mac.
Paul Johnston came back on stage and handed out some great prizes to the lucky people down in the front rows (am I bitter? Yes, of course!) and then moved on to discussing XServe. After this he went through the iBook range quickly before discussing the two new PowerBooks, the 12-inch and the 17-inch. He had the 12-inch there at the show for people to view (see the gallery) but sadly the 17-inch is yet to arrive in the country. He did promise to try and get one into the country in a few days and get it around the shops for people to have a look at. He also discussed how great it is to use products like DVD Studio Pro on the 17-inch model because of the huge amount of screen real-estate.
The presentation finished off with a couple of amusing ads that are available to view on the US Apple site and Paul mentioned that he hoped at least one of the ads would be shown on New Zealand TV shortly.