New Macbook Air (2011) & OS X Lion

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The new (July 2011) Mac Book Air is now out, shipping with Lion.

The combination of these two fixes some issues I have had with the last air and recent OS X editions.

The removal of the back lit keyboard was a deal breaker for me. When you are up late working on code and the lights are dimmed the contrast between the screen and the keyboard is often to high to clear see the keys. so a back lit keyboard makes a big usability difference when working in low light conditions.

Copying a folder to a location will finally try to merge the contents! The old behavior was to replace the entire folder (this is the behavior for files). Every other operating system and the Mac command line will try to merge the contents, I even built my own file browser to fix this issue.

NB: if you lost work due to copying a folder with the same name you did not delete it, it is not in the trash, it is just gone!

We also now get full screen applications which is very useful to those working on small laptop screens. For years the apple fanboys protested that it was not necessary and we should get use to a new way of working, except the pro apps like lightroom have always had a full-screen mode to take advantage of the screen size. Looks like Apple have finally given us some things I felt have been missing for a while.

Full drive encryption, guess this checks a box for some corporate types so business could switch over. I do like this idea for portable devices though, if some one picks up my laptop then all my work is protected.

Apparently they are also going to support NFSv4, NFS = Networked File System and they have scrapped there own AFP Apple file protocol. This should mean connecting to a linux NAS box much easier.

The terminal is now 256 Colours instead of 16.

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