John Siracusa mulls Leopard’s “top secret” upcoming features. I had been puzzled by the resolution-independence screenshot but hadn’t thought it through (the disadvantage of preparing my posts at 4am):
Look at how poorly those “stoplight” window widgets are integrated into the window background, for example. Does that match the high-quality that you’ve come to expect from in the Mac OS X UI? To me, that screenshot absolutely screams “temp artwork.” It looks like a bunch of filler images quickly whipped up to give developers something to test with.
Sure, it could also be that it’s only “temp artwork” because the graphics team is working on more detailed high-res representations of the current state of Aqua, and that, by itself, takes time. Seeing the latest evolutions on leaked screenshots (iCal losing brushed metal, Preview getting Mail-like capsules…) started to make me think that the interface was now about as refined as it would be. But, on the other hand, if they were indeed going to introduce a seriously altered look, and didn’t want anyone outside of Apple to know, then it would make perfect sense to ship their developer builds with these graphics.
There’s something wrong when your thought process goes from conclusion to hypothesis, but I guess that’s the way it goes when you discuss a rumor. Damn, I hate posting about those Apple rumors, but there isn’t much else these days.