macOS Sierra

This past week another new operating system from Apple was released. macOS Sierra is the latest iteration in the tradition of the OS formerly known as Mac OS X. I got it installed on my machines and have been checking out some of the new features. My initial comments are around two items.

First, the inclusion of Siri is kinda neat, although I don’t know how often I’ll use it. I use Siri on my phone all the time, however, I almost never use it on my tablet. Siri seems to be the kind of thing that I use most often when driving or walking outside. If I’m inside my house I find it a little odd to talk to my computer. However, it’s a neat addition, and I could find times when I might use it. It’s often easier to tell Siri what music I want to play right from my desktop, than searching through my iTunes collection for just the right song. Plus, Siri can put together playlists based on genre.

The other feature I’m interested in is the full integration of iCloud Drive. Much like DropBox and Google Drive, iCloud Drive is an online cloud storage for your files. Apple was late to the party on this one, despite having the underpinnings of potential early on. Right now iCloud Drive is set up to sync your Documents and Desktop between your devices, and give access to your iOS devices. It seems to work seamlessly, and it fully integrates with all of the other iCloud features such as iWork.

The biggest feature of iCloud Drive is one that I haven’t been brave enough to turn on yet. If you let it, macOS Sierra will optimize the storage on your hard drive, syncing little used files to the cloud automatically for you. I could see this being a godsend for laptops with small flash drives, but I’ll admit that I’m a bit leary. I use a backup provider to keep my data secure, so at the end of the day I probably don’t have anything to worry about. So I’ll probably give it a try with some of my files and see how well it reduces the space on my drive. If nothing else, it might clean up old video files that I really don’t need anymore.

I haven’t delved too far into any other features, but overall everything feels stable, which is the key bedrock of any new OS release. Additionally, I didn’t have any install problems, which made upgrading a simple process. I might write more as I come across new and interesting things that I haven’t yet tried.

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