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pudge (1)

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I run this joint, see?

Journal of pudge (1)

Tuesday August 06, 2002
01:56 PM

Mac OS Style Guide

[ #6938 ]

There is no MacOS. There is no MacOSX, nor MacOS9, nor OSX.

There are two operating systems, Mac OS, and Mac OS X. The former is currently at version 9.2.2, and the latter at 10.1.5. The full names are "Mac OS 9.2.2" and "Mac OS X 10.1.5". Throw in a "v" or "version" if you like.

Using "OSX" is barely acceptable, if only because so many people use it, but it is too non-specific: what is "X"? If "OSX" is to be used for "Mac OS X", then why not "OS" to refer to "Mac OS"? It should be avoided.

"MacOSX" is not acceptable, nor any other form omitting the space between "Mac" and "OS". Using "Mac OS" to mean "Mac OS X" is not acceptable; they are two different operating systems. "Mac OS 9" is acceptable, to distinguish it from previous versions of Mac OS, and barely acceptable to distinguish it from "Mac OS X", only because so many people incorrectly use "Mac OS" to refer to "Mac OS X".

Also printed on my personal site.

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  • Is OS 10. Afterall was it not common to call prior
    versions OS 9 etc.?

    This of course makes /MacOS X v?10\.\d+/ incredibly redundant/l4m3.
    Were that I say, pancakes?
    • Is OS 10.

      No, it's not. There is no Mac OS 10. It is Mac OS X, version 10.

      Afterall was it not common to call prior versions OS 9 etc.?

      There is no version of Mac OS *after* version 9, so it isn't "prior" to anything. Mac OS X is not Mac OS; Mac OS 9 is not a prior version of Mac OS, it is the current version.

      Mac OS and Mac OS X are different operating systems; it makes no sense to say that Mac OS X is a later version of the same OS, or that Mac OS 9 is an earlier version of the same OS. They are no
      • Regardless, no, no one called it "OS 9" or "OS 8". I'd never once heard that, until Mac OS X came along.

        I did. And still do. Please don't confuse what you have never heard with what doesn't exist. In the context of "Mac OS," I find "OS 8", "OS 9", and "OS X" all perfectly acceptable.
        • I'm sorry if you take literally a statement like "no one ever said that," since it is impossible to take literally ...

          And while you may find them acceptable, I do not. You are free to find them acceptable, and I am free to think they are stupid. :)
        • To be honest, I still use the term 'System', as in System 6, System 7, System 9 =)

            ---ict / Spoon
          • Well, that's wrong, too. :D I can't remember when they made the switch. I know it was Macintosh System 7.5 and Mac OS 8. I can't recall if 7.6 was Mac OS, or Macintosh System.
  • I find myself holding my nose and using "OSX" in some cases because it's more readily searchable. Some crap mailing list search engines can't/don't index anything with fewer than three characters, so "Mac OS X" gets truncated to "Mac", which usually isn't specific enough.

    I was pleased to spot "Mac OS" in O'Reilly's style guide [], after seeing it the wrong way in several books over the years. "MacOS" looks like a cereal brand.