There are always little things that bother you when changes are made in your favorite operating system. It's not a surprise that what bothers me most are the changes in the applications that I use all the time.
The differences that irritate me the most are the ones where I learned how to do something one way and now there is an extra step or the step is different. What I'm doing is very little different than it was a year ago. It just takes a little less familiar path to accomplish it.
My little issues might have zero impact on most users because we all use our computers differently. I've heard the stories about how the deep down changes in Tiger are the most important ones so for now I will accept that on faith as I wait for some of those knock-me-over applications that those features will enable.
However, please in the next incarnation of OS X, figure out "Export" and "Share." Are they commands, menus, or part of "save as?"
In the iPhoto that I use in OS X 10.3.9 there is an "export" under the file menu. In the iPhoto that I use in OS X 10.4.3 "export" resides under a new "Share" menu. In Preview in my 10.3.9 system, "export" is under the file menu. In Preview in my 10.4.3 system, there is no longer an "export" command. You get the same functionality by using "save as" just like in TexEdit.
In 10.3.9 iMovie has "export" under the file menu. In 10.4.3, iMovie HD has a "share" command under the file menu. iDVD has at least improved in that there is no "Buy DVD Media" under the file menu.
To make it seem almost certain that different teams at Apple are operating under different guidelines, iCal still has both "import" and "export" under the file menu.
Of course that begs the question of what is the different between "publish" and "share." "Publish" is the terminology used in iCal while "Share" is the terminology used in iPhoto.
The address book application shows up with "Export vCard" under the file menu in both versions of the OS.
Sometimes I wonder if the "Share Menu" under iPhoto isn't a trial balloon. After all you can now find the "print" command there as well as under the file menu.
Both "Pages" and "Keynote" have "export" located under the file menu. All of this may be hair splitting, but the reality is either the applications have gotten too complex to have consistent commands or Apple itself doesn't really care anymore.
The interesting thing is that the less Apple enforces some consistency, the harder it is to use user interface consistency as a Mac argument. Maybe it's no longer needed given the Windows competition.
However, in checking the world of Windows XP Pro, "Adobe Photoshop Album Starter Edition" 3.0, I found that it too has a "Share" menu like iPhoto. However, "Picasa2" has "Export Picture to Folder" as a command under the file menu. In the Linux world, I checked "F-Spot," a photo archiving application, that is on my SUSE Linux systems. It has "export" under the file menu. "Open Office Writer" also has "export" under the file menu. Then of course I went to "Kino Video Editor" only to find "export" under a "View" menu. I don't pretend to be able to provide the same depth of history in the changes in these applications. They may be far worse than what Apple has done, I just don't know. Also I have no illusions about MS applications, I don't want to even try to look at the problem.
I guess the point is that user interface consistency is something we hoped for in OS X based on some of our experiences with OS 9. Maybe the world has moved on, and we don't need it, but I sure miss it, and it was something to be expected of Apple.
Perhaps Apple has just been lost in iPod-lalaland and will really get focused on OS X with the next release. Otherwise, I guess I'll just get used to living in applications that always feel like something of a puzzle.