My copy of iLife ’06 was waiting for me when I got back from the southland, so I spent last night and most of today playing with it. Early impressions: GarageBand seems like it’d be cool if it’d work, but I get no sound and no preferences pane, so until that bug is fixed, I can’t use it. Everything else in the existing apps is pretty much a point upgrade; all the remarkable new features require a .Mac account.
I was most looking forward to iWeb, after gushing about it on SFist and on here, and I’m still evaluating it. My first impression is that it’s neat but limited. I’m using it to finally put together my pictures from Japan, even though I’ve mostly forgotten that trip, and anyone who would’ve been interested in seeing those pictures has already seen them in different formats and heard me repeat the same stories over the past 2 years. It’s more to see how flexible iWeb is, and to finally be able to check that off instead of having it feel like a big project that I’ve left unfinished.
Apple is really pushing podcasting and videocasting with its new stuff. So just for yuks, I tried playing around with iMovie and my iSight camera. Wow, that was a mistake. Technically, it worked fine, but there’s nothing that blows the self-image quite like seeing yourself how others see you.
Few people like hearing their own voice, because it never quite comes out as good as it sounds in your head. And I’m vain enough to have spent some time playing around with the iSight to try and get a good picture of myself, so I’ve got a pretty realistic idea of what I look like. But I always kind of imagined that in practice, the voice and the face kind of cancelled each other out and reached a reasonable compromise. What I saw in the video was more like a surprisingly fey version of Frankenstein’s monster.
I guess if it proves anything, it’s that Apple’s web-publishing and podcasting revolution isn’t going to change the world anymore than its desktop publishing revolution did. Some people just don’t have any business being in the broadcasting realm. Whether or not I have any business in the writing realm remains to be seen, but I’m sticking with it for now — better to have a lower-bandwidth assault on my self esteem.