Mac OS X culture mapping: stirring the melting pot

I've always thought that culture-mapping is a rich publishing model. Documentation that translates the experience of one culture into the experience of another is incredibly useful. Given the many influences that feed Mac OS X -- classic Mac, Unix, open source, Internet -- there are lots of useful translations to perform. Here's Brian Jepson's take on Mac OS X from a Unix perspective:

Top Ten Mac OS X Tips for Unix Geeks. From starting up to shutting down, there are big differences between Mac OS X and Unix machines. Brian Jepson, coauthor of Mac OS X for Unix Geeks offers ten tips he gathered while working on the book. If you're a Unix geek moving to Mac OS X, these tips will help smooth the way. [ O'Reilly Network]

Brian's new book, co-written with Ernest Rothman, is full of cultural intersections that wouldn't occur to either a Mac person or a Unix person, for example:

osascript -e \\
'tell app "Terminal" to set custom title\\
of first window to "First Shell"'

Confession: I am not worthy. ANSI escape sequences were never fun for me:

echo -n "^[]2;First Shell^G"

Neither was remembering how to type the escape key in the shell and vi (Control-V, ESC) or emacs (Control-Q, ESC). Mac OS X knows about those incantations too, but the AppleScript cross-pollination is a really nice touch.

That's a trivial example, admittedly, yet emblematic of the multicultural roots of the reincarnated Mac. Now is the perfect time for culture mappers to stir the melting pot.

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