Today, X is all hip and cool. OS X. Windows XP. Alright, bad example. For whatever reason, back when OS X was but an un-launched child OS, Apple settled on cat names, but not after flirting with a few crazy names. What will be OS X’s next name?
Crazy Cats, Goodbye
Mac historians will remember the first OS X (before it was OS X) as Rhapsody, circa summer of 1997. Then Apple flirted with OS X Server, codenamed ‘Hera’ which still looked much like Classic Mac OS.
Even the original OS X developer preview in 1998 came in without a name, animal or otherwise. Speaking of animals, what was the name of OS X’s first public beta, summer of 2000?*
The first cat name was Cheetah and that appeared with Mac OS X 10.0 (Classic Mac OS made it to 9.x, so a move to 10 was logical).
Then came a long sequence of cats, some big, some small, some memorable, a few memorable for other reasons.
Cheetah, then Puma, Jaguar then Panther, Tiger and Leopard, then Snow Leopard, Lion, and finally Mountain Lion at OS X 10.8. That ended the reign of cat names for OS X.
OS X 10.9 even dropped the Mac prefix as Apple decided to move OS X names into famous locations in California, starting with the famous surfing area known as Mavericks.
What’s Next, OS X?
The latest rumor has Apple’s next major OS X version named Napa, as in Napa Valley. That certainly reflects Apple’s ‘Made in California‘ tag line.
Napa seems reasonable and memorable, but Apple may want to consider a few other names before launching OS X 10.10 later this year.
For example, there’s Yosemite, which is at the heart of California. On second thought, that brings up the thought of Yosemite Sam, the Warner Bros animated cartoon character.
How about OS X L.A.? Or, OS X Sacramento? My favorite non-starter is OS X Bakersfield, but since Apple is in Northern California I would expect a northern name.
OS X Big Sur? California is known for giant redwood trees, so what about Sequoia to honor native Americans and to show how great and long lasting OS X 10.10 could be (I give it a year, at best; we need something to look forward to).
- OS X Santa Barbara
- OS X Sonoma
- OS X Pacific
- OS X Palm Springs
- OS X Santa Monica
- OS X Hollywood
- OS X Frisco (as in San Fran)
- OS X Golden Gate
If famous California locations don’t cut it for you, let’s consider famous Californians.
- OS X Frost (Robert Frost)
- OS X Bruce Lee
- OS X Star Wars (George Lucas)
- OS X DiMaggio (as in ‘Joltin Joe)
- OS X Steinbeck (as in John)
- OS X Tiger (Tiger Woods)
- OS X Tricky Dick (Richard Nixon)
California natives all. So, if those don’t grab you, and you’re not keen on OS X Napa Valley, what would you name the next version of OS X?